By Troy Treasure
Monday, January 20
The North Shelby Raiders crushed Marion County 65-17 in boys’ first-round play. Earlier in the evening, the Lady Raiders handled La Plata with ease winning 62-35.
Monday’s Raiders game was over practically from the opening tip.
Utilizing full-court pressure, second-seed North Shelby snared a 5-0 lead 38 seconds into the game. Those five points were more than the Mustangs could muster the entire first half. NS led 40-4 at halftime.
Of the 14 Raiders suited up versus Marion County, 11 scored field goals. J.D. Rich led the way with 14 points.
In the girls tilt, third-seed North Shelby out-scored La Plata 19-5 in the second quarter and entered the half-time break up 40-16.
Four players scored in double figures led by Caroline Linberger’s 17 points. Lilly Cook and Presley Stoneburner each had 13. Ceairra Kirby added 10. Pieper Wood and Jena Lene led the Lady Bulldogs with 11 points each.
The No. 3 seed South Shelby boys were also victorious on the tournament’s opening night defeating Schuyler County 67-50.
The Cardinals’ Cole Mitchell exploded for 20 fourth-quarter points, 12 on four 3-point shots. He finished with a game-high 33 points. Guy Timbrook had 16.
In the first game Monday, the second-seeded Schuyler County girls averted an upset holding off Marion County 40-39. Jacie Morris paced the Lady Rams with 16 points. MaKinley Aeschliman scored 13.
Delaney Strauss led Marion County with 16 points. Halle Keilholz added 10.
Tuesday, January 21
The South Shelby Lady Birds had made important fourth-quarter three throws earlier in its opening round game versus Knox County.
But nursing a 43-42 lead with 2:12 remaining, it was Emma Dovin’s jumper that pushed No. 4 seed South Shelby ahead by three. A Kaylee Gaines fast-break lay-in shortly thereafter helped secure a 52-44 first-round win.
Miranda Patterson led the Lady Birds with 14 points, five on fourth-quarter foul shots. Kylee Woods topped the Lady Eagles with a game-high 18 points. Knox County was without the services of forward Riley Strange.
SS shot 16 of 23 at the line for the game. Knox County was 6 of 15 on free throws with only two attempts in the second half.
In other first-round games Tuesday, No. 4 boys’ seed Knox County got 20 points from Coltin Morrow as the Eagles beat Scotland County 57-44. The Tigers were led by Carson Harrison and Owen Triplett with 11 each.
Girls’ top-seed Scotland County dominated Highland’s junior varsity 66-15. The Lady Tigers’ Micah Cooley had a game-high 17 points.
Tel Wheeler scored 34 points as boys No. 1 La Plata cruised past Highland’s junior varsity 79-33. Freshman Seth Evans led the Cougars with 18 points.
Saturday, January 25
Scotland County held off fourth-seed South Shelby 46-42 in a girls’ semi-final contest. The Lady Birds led by 10, 32-22, entering the fourth period.
Consecutive 3-pointers by Kylee Stott to start the final eight-minutes jump-started the Lady Tigers. Two Emily Dial treys in the final three minutes were knock-out blows.
Mallory Wood and Kaylee Gaines led South Shelby with 11 points each. Micah Cooley scored a game-high 14 points for Scotland County. Dial finished with 11.
Knox County rolled past Highland’s junior varsity 60-16. Three Lady Eagles scored in double figures led by Daniela Dooley’s 17 points. Kylee Woods had 16. Riley Strange added 14.
In other girls’ action, La Plata defeated Marion County 45-37. The Lady Mustangs’ Delaney Straus poured in a game-high 25 points.
The girls’ championship game will be between the tournament’s 1-and-2 seeds. Scotland County plays Schuyler County on Saturday, February 1.
On the boys’ side, No. 4 seed Knox County (7-9) upset La Plata 44-35 in the semifinals. Trent Kloke led the Eagles with 13 points, 11 in the second half. Jacob Becker and Rylan Roberts each scored 11. Knox County will play South Shelby for the boys’ championship on Saturday, February 1.