Dugger, Rangers drill Huskies

By Marvin Birchfield
STAR Correspondent

   BAILEYTON -- The Unaka Rangers rolled into the Husky Den on Friday night, displaying an impressive 84-54 victory over North Greene.
   "We moved the ball real well, and when we got the open shot we were knocking it down," said Unaka coach Donald Ensor.
   The opening tip-off was controlled by North Greene, as they went right away to their big threat inside Jason Hickman, who laid the ball up and in for the first score of the game.
   It didn't take long for the Huskies to notice the outside shooting ability of the Rangers, with Aaron Dugger putting on a display of the long-range bomb, knocking down four treys in the first quarter.
   "I was just in the comfort zone tonight, and Cody and Dustin Collins got the ball to me after penetrating and drawing the defense," said Dugger.
   Dugger finished with 30 points on the night, and connected on five of Unaka's nine 3-point shots.
   Unaka had built a 16-6 lead by the three-minute mark in the first, when Dugger drained the shot from the right corner.
   North Greene's only offensive threat in the period was Hickman, who poured in 10 of the Huskies' 12 points, as they trailed 19-12 to start the second quarter.
   "We wanted to get it up the floor and make it an up-tempo game," Dugger said. "We didn't want to let the big man set up in the half-court offense."
   Hickman led the Huskies with 18 points on the night, while teammate Dustin Collins had 11.
   In the second period, the Rangers outscored the Huskies 12-4 in the first four minutes with Ben Cole making the steal and layup to give them a 31-16 lead.
   The Huskies came back to convert on the next five baskets of the game, closing them within five with 1:30 left until halftime.
   From there, it was Unaka's turn to make a run as it managed to post the next eight scores with a 3-pointer going through from Dustin Collins with three second to go.
   This put Unaka up 39-26, as they had dominated the outside perimeter throughout the first half.
   The Rangers increased the intensity in the third period, pushing the lead to over 20 in the first three minutes.
   "We did a good job of running the floor, but the key was our level of defensive intensity in the second half, which we made it work," said Ensor.
   Unaka continued holding their advantage in the third, with Rusty Chambers tapping in a missed shot at the buzzer to make it 59-37.
   North Greene was unsuccessful in making a run in the final period. The Ranger ballclub seemed to be a step faster in outrunning the Huskies.
   "We couldn't stay with them for they get up the floor quick and shoot the ball excellent," said North Greene coach David McLain.