Wildcats end regular
season, head into tournament
Lady Cats to face Jackson Co. in championship
Wildcats end regular
season, head into tournament
Lyndon Johnson/OCN staff
Wilson Cates outpaces a herd of Clarkrange Buffaloes on his way
to scoring a deuce in the contest on Feb. 16.
By LYNDON JOHNSON, OCN staff
The Livingston Academy Wildcats got ready for District 7-AA Tournament
play in the week past before heading to "The Hoop", otherwise
known as Hooper Eblen Center, to play in said tournament.
On Monday, Feb. 16, the Cats made the LA gymnasium sound much like
the old rancher's song, "Home on the Range". "Oh,
give me a home where the buffalo roam," says the song, and
so said LA as they faced the Clarkrange Buffaloes in competition.
In the opening quarter, both teams started hitting the boards in
a steady manner, almost too steady. After the first 8 minutes of
play, the score was tied like shoelaces at 11.
The Wildcats came out and nailed down 6 points early in the second
to take a 17-11 lead before Clarkrange managed to start keeping
up with their pace. LA Sophomore Brandon Matthews shot the last-ditch
attempt at the buzzer and swished it, making the final 3-pointer
of the half and setting the score at halftime to LA 26, Clarkrange
The Wildcats came out hustling in the third, scoring 11 points
thanks in large part to dueling 3-pointers from Wesley Puckett.
After a great start and reasonable rest of the quarter, LA led 43-31
headed down the stretch.
In the fourth, Clarkrange would score more points than LA for the
only time during the evening, albeit not nearly enough to take the
cake. The Buffaloes scored 15 to the Wildcats' 11, giving the Cats
the win at 54-46.
Matt Reeder led LA in scoring with 17 points. Wesley Puckett had
13, 12 of which came from downtown. Wilson Cates and Brandon Matthews
both scored 8 points apiece, while Tyler Livingston with 6 and Lance
Ruble with 2 rounded out the scoring summary.
On the positive mentality of that win, the LA squad headed to
the locker room knowing full well that they would have to hit the
home court again to face Cookeville High School the next evening.
The Wildcats didn't show any fatigue early in the going on Tuesday,
Feb. 17 when they faced Cookeville's Cavaliers. In the first quarter,
they came out shooting and playing just as hard as the Cavs, coming
away with the preliminary lead, 16-14.
In the second, the Cavaliers held LA down, but didn't necessarily
go on a scoring tangent themselves. Netting 11 and holding LA to
6 allowed the Cavs to take a lead of 3 points (25-22) headed to
the halftime break.
CHS made a grab for the psychological victory in the third quarter,
as LA's weary legs allowed the Cavs to score 17 points to the Wildcats'
9. With an 11-point lead headed into the fourth (42-31), the Cavaliers
And then, the Wildcats caught their second wind. In the fourth
quarter, LA came back to form in a hurry, scoring 15 points to the
Cavaliers' 6; however, the Cookevillians held off the Wildcat comeback
to take home the slim 48-46 victory.
Brad West, returning to play from injury, led the Wildcats with
13 points. Brandon Matthews with 11, Wilson Cates with 10, Matt
Reeder with 8, Wesley Puckett with 2, and Tyler Livingston with
2 completed the scoring summary.
The regular season completed, a couple of Wildcats made the District
7-AA All-District Team. Named to first team were Wilson Cates (who
was also named to the All-Defensive Team) and Brad West. Matt Reeder
was named to the All-District 2nd Team. Wesley Puckett received
an honorable mention.
And then, it was tournament time. The Wildcats headed into the
District 7-AA Tournament at Tennessee Tech's Hooper Eblen Center
on Saturday, Feb. 2 as the number 2 seed.
The competition for LA that night was Jackson County.
In the first quarter, the Blue Devils fought harder than LA by
one basket, taking the early lead at 12-10.
In the second, LA started warming up a little more, scoring 15
to the 6-point offering by JCHS to take the lead headed into the
halftime break, 25-18.
In the third quarter, both teams had a good showing, but the Wildcats
had the better. Scoring 23, the Wildcats outshone the Blue Devils'
18 and took the commanding 48-36 lead heading into the final measure.
That final measure was a close one, which meant that Jackson County
did not outscore LA by a big enough margin to take the win. Final
result: 69-58, Livingston Academy.
The Wildcats head into the semifinals in the District 7-AA tournament
as a result of that win. As of press time, the game was scheduled
for Tuesday, Feb. 24 at "The Hoop".
Lady Cats to face
Jackson Co. in championship game
Dewain E. Peek/OCN staff
Kasey Baltimore drives by a Lady Cavalier in last week's regular
season finale against Cookeville.
By DEWAIN E. PEEK, OCN staff
The District 7-AA Tournament championship game will have a familiar
look at 8 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 26 at Tennessee Tech. The Lady Blue
Devils of Jackson County will face the Lady Wildcats of Livingston
Academy, a very familiar sight over the last several years.
The Lady Blue Devils narrowly escaped defeat at the hands of the
Smith County Owlettes in a 55-53 nail-biter on Monday, Feb. 23.
Smith County had eliminated Upperman in a 49-41 upset on Friday,
Livingston advanced to the championship game after a 63-46 win
over Cannon County on Monday. The Lady Lions had upset the Lady
Dragons of York 39-37 in overtime on Friday night, sending them
Against Cannon County, LA took an 11-8 lead in the first period,
then stretched it to 31-15 by halftime. Livingston outscored the
Woodbury team 16-10 in the third, to go ahead 47-25 and the game
was effectively over. The Lady Lions outscored LA 21-16 in the fourth
period, but not enough to keep the Lady Cats from the 63-46 win.
Cannon County was led in scoring by Tracy Wilson with 14 points,
and Felicia Francis with 10 points.
LA's Katrina Beechboard led in scoring with 19 points, including
9 free throws. Also scoring in double figures for LA was Kellie
Thurman with 11 points, including two 3-pointers and 5 free throws.
Kasey Baltimore scored 9 points on three 3-pointers, Megan Thompson
scored 7 points, including 3 free throws, Megan Brown scored 4 points,
including 2 free throws, Kristin Hoover hit 4 free throws, and Krista
Clinard and Haley Mullins each scored 2 points.
Beechboard led in rebounds with 7, Mullins led in steals with 4,
and Thurman blocked 2 shots.
The semifinal win over Cannon County came after a first round win
over DeKalb County on Friday, Feb. 20.
Livingston led 14-10 over the Smithville team in a close-scoring
first quarter, then pulled away with a 17-2 defensive clampdown
in the second period to lead 31-12 at halftime. The game was all
but over as the Lady Tigers managed only 4 points in the third period
and 9 in the fourth to succumb to LA 25-63.
DeKalb County was led by Courtney Davis with 10 points.
Katrina Beechboard led LA in scoring with 13 points, including
a 3-pointer. She also led LA in rebounds with 8, and had 5 steals,
and blocked 2 shots.
Megan Thompson also scored in double figures for LA with 12 points,
including two 3-pointers. Whitney Sells scored 9 points, including
two 3-pointers, Haley Mullins scored 8 points, Krista Clinard scored
5 points, including a 3-pointer, Kellie Thurman scored 4 points,
including 2 free throws, Kasey Baltimore hit a 3-pointer, April
Handy scored 3 points, including a free throw, and Megan Brown,
Kristin Hoover, and Brittany McCoin each scored 2 points.
The Lady Cats will enter the Region 4-AA Tournament at Portland
as either the number 1 or number 2 team from District 7-AA to face
the teams in District 8-AA.
Lady Cats Coach Lesley Smith said, "Hume Fogg and David Lipscomb
are the strength of the other district, but the way Smith and Cannon
are playing, I wouldn't be shocked if they beat them both.
"Lipscomb is the exact same team they were last year, and
they were very, very good. Hume Fogg is the most athletic team any
of us has played. I'm not sure our 3 and 4 might not upset them."
At the close of the regular season, All-District 7-AA honors were
Katrina Beechboard was named All-District 7-AA Most Valuable Player,
and Kasey Baltimore was named Most Valuable Player of the District
7-AA All-Defensive Team.
Megan Thompson was named to the All-District 1st Team, Kellie
Thurman was named to the All-District 2nd Team, and Kasey Baltimore
was named to the All-District 3rd Team.
Ashley Matthews and Mallie Stephens were named to the District
7-AA All-Freshmen Team.
Kellie Thurman was named to the All-Defensive Team.
Coach Smith said of the selections, "I was happy with it.
Katrina, I think, hands down is the best player in this district.
"I feel like Katrina's one of the best players to ever play
"I was real proud for Kasey. You know, Kasey's somebody who
doesn't show up on the stat line a lot. She's so important to us.
"We recognize it, the coaches here, and our players, and our
fans, hopefully, recognize it, but it was good to have the other
district people recognize what a great defender she is."
Coach Smith was also pleased with the other LA players honored,
though she did express a wish that Kellie Thurman could have been
included on the All-District 1st Team.
Before heading into the tournament, the Lady Wildcats closed out
the regular season with home wins over Clarkrange and Cookeville.
Against Clarkrange on Monday, Feb. 16, LA jumped ahead of the Lady
Buffaloes 12-8 in the defense-dominated game, but Clarkrange fought
back with a 15-12 second quarter to trail 23-24 at halftime. The
Lady Cats outscored the Lady Buffaloes 10-7 in the third period
and 18-12 in the fourth to win 52-42.
"We played a little bit better, but they do a great job defending
us," Coach Smith said. "Our outside shots weren't falling
like they needed to against their zone.
"Defensively, I thought we played pretty well. Kellie in particular
played well on Michelle Snow.
"In that game, Katrina went right to 1,900 points and Michelle
Snow went over 1,900.
"That was a preparation game too because no one in our district
plays zones like that," Coach Smith said. "So, as we go
on, the region might be like that, or there might be a substate
matchup or something like that."
Kellie Thurman led LA in scoring with 14 points, including two
3-pointers and 2 free throws, and also blocked a shot. Katrina Beechboard
scored in double figures with 13 points, including a 3-pointer and
2 free throws, and completed a double-double by pulling down 11
rebounds. And April Handy also scored in double figures with 10
points, including 4 for 4 on free throws.
Megan Thompson scored 8 points, including a 3-pointer and 3 free
throws, and led LA in steals with 3. Kasey Baltimore hit a 3-pointer,
and Megan Brown and Haley Mullins each scored 2 points.
Livingston Academy played the last game of the regular season against
the Cookeville Lady Cavaliers on Tuesday, Feb. 17.
The Lady Cavaliers charged ahead 19-9 in the first period, but
the Lady Cats responded with a 19-10 second period to tighten the
Cavs' lead to 29-28. Livingston's defense shut down Cookeville in
the third, allowing only 4 points while the LA offense put 15 on
the board. LA finished off with a 17-13 fourth quarter to win 60-46.
"To score 60 against a Cookeville team is pretty amazing,"
Coach Smith said.
Katrina Beechboard led LA in scoring with 16 points, including
2 free throws. She also led LA in steals with 3. She had 6 rebounds
and blocked a shot.
Kellie Thurman scored 13 points, including a 3-pointer and 2 free
throws. She also had 6 rebounds.
April Handy scored 9 points, including a free throws. Kasey Baltimore
scored 8 points, including two 3-pointers, and she blocked a shot.
Whitney Sells hit two 3-pointers, and Megan Thompson and Haley Mullins
each scored 4 points. Mullins also blocked a shot.
top of page
Overton County News
415 West Main Street
P.O. Box 479
Livingston, Tennessee 38570