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Archives 11-29-2006

Sports

Cats score 106 points in win over Kenwood
Lady Wildcats sweep week's play
Softball tournament A League winners announced
Softball tournament B League winners announced



Cats score 106 points in win over Kenwood

Kassie Hunley/OCN Sports
Jordan Everley makes a fadeaway shot in Tuesday's win.

By MAC McLEOD, OCN Sports No one at the Jackson County gym Saturday afternoon, Nov. 25 could recall Livingston Academy ever scoring 100 points in a boys basketball game, not fans, former players, or veteran radio announcer Craig Cantrell.

None would go so far as to say it "never" happened, but now if approached with the same question, they can say when and where.

After defeating Pickett County 65-56 earlier in the week in a game played at Livingston, the Wildcats brought their 2-1 record into Friday's opening round of the Jackson County Thanksgiving Classic against a strong 3A Independence High from Wilson County.

When it was over, the Wildcats were looking at the short end of a 77-59 whipping, which brought their young season mark to 2-2.

"Independence was a very good team with some very fine shooters," LA Head Coach Richard Melton pointed out. "Everybody on that team could shoot, and it was by far the best team we've seen so far this season."

Melton's Wildcats left the floor with a 106-58 trouncing of Kenwood of Clarksville in what may well be LA's first 100-plus performance ever, and certainly in a long time. "Tonight I think the players wanted to prove something," Coach Melton beamed.

"Tonight we showed great attitude and determination. This was a lot better than yesterday.

The week started off in a tough scrap with the always determined Pickett County. Livingston jumped out to a 14-6 lead at the end of the first period, and added to the margin at 33-12 at the intermission.

During the first half, the Wildcats played outstanding defense, a strong 8-0 run early in the game, and an occasional 3-point shot to control the tempo and the score board.

But anyone knowing Pickett County basketball and its very competitive coach Greg Bibb knew the game was only half over and it could turn around quickly in the second. And it did.

The Bobcats came out firing in the third period and scored the first 7 points to cut the margin to 12 at 33-19. Justin Poston finally stopped the LA bleeding with his first bucket of the night, then came back and hit a big 3-pointer to up the lead to 11 at 40-29 with 30 seconds remaining in the third frame.

Pickett County pulled within 2 midway through the fourth frame at 52-50, and trailed by 2 at 55-53 with a little over 2 minutes remaining. Then, as he had done all night, sophomore Chase Dunn put out the Bobcats' fire with critical baskets and free throws down the stretch. A technical foul on Bibb with 30 seconds remaining sealed the win for LA as Dunn walked to the line and hit two important free throws.

Dunn was the only Wildcat in double figures as he led the scoring with 26. Tyson Stover connected for 8 points, and Deven Ramsey was good for 6 before he fouled out.

Dunn later explained, "We knew Pickett would be tough, they always are, but we maintained our composure late in the game and it worked out.

"The fans had to love it simply because the outcome was in doubt until right there at the end."

Friday afternoon was a different story altogether. In the opening round of the Jackson County tournament, Livingston and Independence battled to a 12-12 deadlock at the end of the first period, but from then on, it was all Eagles. A 29-15 run in the second frame just about sealed the outcome and a 23-15 difference in the third period was all it took for Independence to move its mark to 3-0 and even the Wildcats' mark at 2-2.

In Friday's game, only Clint West hit in double figures as he led Livingston with 13 points. Dunn and Jordon Everley each added 9, and Ramsey hit for 6.

So with the 77-59 beating still fresh in their minds, the Wildcats set out to make amends against Kenwood on Saturday afternoon, Nov. 25.

Stover opened the LA scoring midway through the period with a 3-pointer, then Ramsey quickly added 4 with a basket and a pair of free throws. For the next several minutes, the two teams went about trading 3-pointers.

Stover hit three of the 3-point shots in the frame, and Dunn added another, and suddenly, with a minute remaining in the frame, the Wildcats simply took over offensively and defensively and raced out to a 31-18 lead.

Picking up where they left off at the end of the first frame, the Wildcats went back to work and simply rolled over the Knights in the second 8 minutes. Ramsey took charge inside, and his big frame and nice shooting touch forced the Knights to go outside, and there, solid defense by Dunn, West, and Todd Smith, along with added hustle inside by Stover, quickly put the game out of reach.

At the half, LA led by 20, 53-34, and there was more to come. Stover opened the second frame with his fifth 3-pointer of the night, and Dunn followed quickly with a layup following a steal. By the time 2 minutes remained on the clock in the period, LA was ahead by 35 and heading for the century mark on the scoreboard.

Todd Smith hit a 3-pointer to start the final frame, and at that point, with his team leading 87-42, Melton went to his bench.

With 2:40 showing on the clock, Poston took a pass after a steal and fired the shot that sent the Wildcats to the century mark. At that point, Livingston led 100-56. Josh Huitt moved it to 102-56 seconds later, and then it was just a matter of running out the clock.

Where he was held to only 9 points on Friday afternoon, Dunn rebounded well with a game high 32 on Saturday, and Ramsey, who had been having early foul trouble, managed to play the entire game with only 2 fouls and ended the game with 18 points.

Ramsey admitted, "I've worked on the foul stuff. Tonight I only got two I think, and that let me play more aggressive on the boards.

"We still need to work on the defensive boards, but tonight we came together and played a good solid game. It was fun."

As for Dunn, he wasn't sure where all the points came from, but he was just happy to be part of the 100-plus performance.

"I really can't tell you where it came from," the likeable sophomore said."I must have been unconscious or something.

"Seriously, that was a great team performance, and it helped make up for Friday's loss. We didn't play well Friday at all, and that probably was because Independence played well and was a good team."

On the week, Dunn had 67 offensive points and Stover had 11 three-point baskets. As a team, the Wildcats outscored their opponents 230-191.

After hosting Cookeville on Tuesday, Nov. 28, Livingston Academy will host district foe Macon County on Friday, Dec. 1. Then the Cats will travel to Jamestown on Tuesday, Dec. 5 to take on district rival York Institute.

Kassie Hunley/OCN Sports
Chase Dunn elevates for a shot over a Pickett County Bobcat in Tuesday's tough win.

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Lady Wildcats sweep week's play

Kassie Hunley/OCN Sports
Shelby Taylor powers through the Pickett defense
.

By MAC McLEOD, OCN Sports Any week you can win all the games you play has to be rewarding, but last week's 3-0 run for the Livingston Academy Lady Wildcats was a little special.

"I'm pleased we won all three games," LA Head Coach Lesley Smith pointed out last Saturday afternoon following her Lady Wildcats' 64-25 thrashing of Kenwood High from Clarksville. "But I think more importantly, two of those wins were on neutral courts, and you have to learn to win on the road if you expect to go anywhere come tournament time."

If that's the case, come March, the Lady Cats should be in good shape.

After holding off a scrappy Pickett County team 69-51 on Tuesday night, Nov. 21 at home, LA hit the road to Jackson County for the Thanksgiving Classic. Jackson County's gym has not always been the fondest place to play for the Lady Cats over the years, but this weekend it produced two good victories with strong showings both offensively and defensively for the Cats.

On Friday night, Nov. 24, Livingston got by 3A Independence 48-40, then rolled over Kenwood on Saturday, 64-25.

Only 3 points separated Livingston and Pickett at the end of the first period in the Tuesday game, but a 13-9 run in the second frame gave the Lady Cats a 37-30 lead at halftime.

After Mallie Stephens opened the third period with a long 3-point basket, Pickett County made a 7-2 run to close the gap to 45-37, but that would be as close as the Lady Bobcats would get.

Ashley Matthews, Shelby Taylor, and Kendria Kilgore would go on a scoring spree late in the game to pull away to the 18-point victory.

Matthews led the Lady Cats with 17 points, but a well balanced scoring attack played a major role in the win. Stephens added 9 points, while Alison West, Brittany McCoin, and Taylor each hit for 8, and Kilgore was good for 7.

Matthews would later point out, "That was a total team effort. It's not up to me to score so much this year because everyone on this team can shoot, and I'm really liking the role of playmaker more. I think we played good defense tonight also."

For McCoin, like Matthews, the role is different this year from last.

"I'm learning step by step," the senior explained. "Last year I came in for a few minutes, but this year it's my job to get in there from the start, and it's different. I know my teammates are relying on me to do my job, and I like that pressure."

Independence proved to be more capable on Friday. Livingston led 12-11 at the end of the first period, and were down by 2, 23-21at the half.

In the second half, the Lady Cats outscored the Lady Eagles 27-17, and went on to the 8-point win.

Jada Ledbetter found her shooting range on Friday, and she and Kilgore each dropped in 11 points while West had 9, Matthews added 8, Taylor 5, and McCoin 4.

Coach Smith said, "I told the team at the half that we were changing the lineup, and they all agreed. That shows leadership from our seniors.

"We put Kilgore and Taylor in and we got results, and it spread throughout the entire team."

On Saturday, Coach Smith went back to her original starting five of Matthews, West, Stephens, McCoin, and Ledbetter, and it didn't take long for them to get things moving.

After leading by 3, 10-7, at the end of the first period, the Lady Cats went on a 14-0 run in the second period to break the game open. Regardless of who shot the ball, the results were usually the same - 2 points.

Livingston led 33-12 at intermission, then hit the first 9 points of the third frame to put the game totally out of reach, 51-20, at the start of the final period.

Ledbetter explained after the game, "We really came together tonight. Our defense played extremely well, and the shots fell from about anybody who shot."

For Kilgore, it was another solid performance for the sophomore who played very little last season.

"I'm starting to get the feel of things," the easy-going Kilgore said. "I just need to keep it up and learn every game and every practice."

Coach Smith added, "Next week we start our district play, and everything gets real from then on. We've had some good games, and we've been able to try all kinds of combinations to see who plays good with whom.

"Elizabeth (assistant coach Elizabeth Maxwell) has been working extremely hard with Kilgore, and that's starting to pay off.

"I think the team is comfortable with each other, and we have experience and leadership out there. These early games have given us a chance to see what we can do and what we need to work on. Now it's time to get it done."

Ledbetter led Saturday's scoring effort for Livingston with 13 points, while Matthews added 12. Kilgore added 8, and Stephens ended the afternoon with 7.

After hosting Cookeville on Tuesday, Nov. 28, Livingston Academy will host district foe Macon County on Friday, Dec. 1. Then the Lady Cats will travel to Jamestown on Tuesday, Dec. 5 to take on district rival York Institute.

Kassie Hunley/OCN Sports
Ashley Matthews fires a 3-pointer in the Lady Wildcats' win over Pickett County.

 

 

Softball tournament A League winners announced

courtesy of Crystal Kingery
Lightning took 1st place in the A League of the Billy Presley Co-Ed Softball Tournament. Team members are, front row from left, Rachael Barlow, Whitney Walker, Stasha Babb, back row, Amanda Mihelic, Chris Swallows, Chad Watson, Joey Dyer, Heather Walker, Kit Baxter, and James Baxter.

 

courtesy of Crystal Kingery
Squeak's took the runner-up spot in the A League of the Billy Presley Co-Ed Softball Tournament. Team members are, front row from left, Angela McDougle, Trudy Barrett, Amber Dickerson, Scotty Smith, Shannon Ford, Squeak Smith, Danny Ford, back row, Brian Smith, Michael Poston, and Gary Ballard.

 

courtesy of Crystal Kingery
Wolf River Grill took 3rd place in the A League of the Billy Presley Co-Ed Softball Tournament. Team members are, front row from left, Shannon Brown, Ashley Cook, Dedra Booher and son, Crystal Kingery, back row, Brandon Robinson, James Gibson, Heather Huddleston, Josh Thrasher, Jessie Boles, and Lonnie Reeder.

 

Softball tournament B League winners announced

courtesy of Crystal Kingery
S&S Farms took 1st place in the B League of the Billy Presley Co-Ed Softball Tournament. Team members are, front row from left, Kenny Smith, Pam Smith, Lisa Copeland, Serenna Cole, Trista Nelson, Jill Neal, back row, Amanda Mihelic, Kelly Taylor, Kevin Taylor, Jeff Hammock, Wayne Huckeby, Chris Nelson, and, not picture, Amanda White, Tiffany White, Chelsey Brannum, and Shawn Walthall. Jeff Hammock and Trista Nelson were the home run derby winners.

 

courtesy of Crystal Kingery
Taylor's took the runner-up spot in the B League of the Billy Presley Co-Ed Softball Tournament. Team members are, front row from left, Josh Parsons, Bruce Dixon, James Parsons, back row, Kelly Williams, Mandy Winningham, Amanda Cantrell, Betha Jo Crabtree, Jason Cox, Shania Taylor, and Robert Owens.

 

courtesy of Crystal Kingery
Billy's Bunch took 3rd place in the B League of the Billy Presley Co-Ed Softball Tournament. Team members are, front row from left, Ashley Melton, Larry Melton, Juliann Melton, Jeff Hammock, Chris Winningham, Travis Staggs, back row, B.J. Presley, Trudy Barrett, Donnie Staggs, Stacia Ledbetter, Melanie Staggs, Gwen Rhoten, Missey Winningham, Kylor Winningham, and Dylan Winningham.

 

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