Jr. 'Dogs top Hunter in varsity matchups

By Tim Chambers
STAR Correspondent
Good things come in threes. Thanks to three converted three-point plays in the second half from Bulldog forward Jarred Irick, Hampton knocked off visiting Hunter 50-33 in elementary basketball action Friday afternoon.
This was a game of two halves, with Hunter holding a slim one-point advantage at intermission.
"We came out and played better defense the second half," said Irick. "Everyone on the team stepped up and played well."
Hampton sprinted to a 14-4 lead in the first period behind some offensive explosion from Bobby James, who accounted for seven points in the period.
Nick Papantoniou kept the Tigers close with a three-point shot that found its mark, then nailing a deuce at the buzzer to close the gap to 14-9 after one.
The Tigers continued their comeback in the second period behind a trey by Bryant Collins and two baskets in the paint from Hunter Taylor. Two more buckets from Jeff Wilson and Kelly Rapert gave Hunter its first lead 19-18 with two minutes remaining in the quarter.
Stacey Honeycutt provided the 'Dogs a one-point advantage with a three off the wing but Hunter answered with Cody Smith scoring off a baseline drive to keep Hunter in front 22-21 at intermission.
The tide shifted in Hampton's favor during the third quarter as Hunter went nearly nine minutes without a field goal. Meanwhile, Irlck would answer the call for the Bulldogs, scoring six points all via the old-fashion three-point play to give the 'Dogs a 29-21 lead after three.
Hunter tied to regain its composure in the fourth period, but 21 points by the Bulldog offense kept the Tigers from getting back into the game. James opened the period with a putback to up the lead to 31-21.
Hunter broke the drought with a free throw by Dustin Carden and a two buckets from Jeff Wilson to close within five at 31-26. James and Irick continued to spark the 'Dogs with timely baskets to keep the lead at 10.
Two scores from Justin Bentley and one each by Lucas Andrews and Dustin Milhorn proved too much for the Tigers to overcome.
James led all scorers with 13, followed by Irick with 11. Jaynes and Honeycutt added nine and eight, respectively, to lead the Dogs.
"We played better the second half," stated James. "It was a much better effort by our entire team."
Taylor tossed in 11 to pace the Tigers while Wilson added six to the cause.
"Coach (Chris) Collins has done a great job with Hunter," stated Bulldog mentor Leon Tolley. "They are a much-improved team. They were beating us off the dribble in the first half so we tired to make adjustments at halftime. I am pleased with our effort."
Collins was disappointed in the Tigers' second-half performance.
"Our shot selection was awful, we got to do a better job of running our offense or we won't beat anyone else this year," he said.
Lady Jr. Bulldogs 28
Lady Tigers 27
Mary Beth Ingram sparked a second-half comeback that saw the Bulldogs come from 10 points down to win in the final seconds of the game.
The Lady Tigers raced out to a 12-6 lead after one thanks to the play of Hollie Grindstaff and Brooke Westberry. Ingram tossed in four during the period for the Lady Dogs.
Hunter maintained a six-point advantage, thanks to buckets from Andrea Lewis and Hannah Colbaugh.
The Lady 'Dogs found their offense in the third period behind six points from Ingram and two each from Mikki Oliver and Lana Hicks. Cassie Johnson's three extended Hampton's lead to 23-19 heading into the final period.
The fourth quarter provided much excitement with the lead swaying back and fourth during the remainder of the game. Kayla Winters hit for two, but the Dogs answered with a runner by Josie McKinney to give the Bulldogs a 25-23 lead.
Colbaugh's three put Hunter out in front by two after a free throw by Westberry but Ingram tied the score with a jumper. Andrea Smith's free throw with 30 seconds remaining in the game proved to be the difference.
Ingram tallied 12 to lead the 'Dogs. Colbaugh, with seven, paced the Tigers.
"We played much better in the second half," stated Hampton's legendary coach Ronnie Street. "I was proud of the entire team."
JV Boys
Hunter 31
Hampton 20
Hunter salvaged a win in the junior varsity game by stopping Hampton. Cody Cornett and Dustin Carden topped Hunter with eight each, while Drew Chambers, with seven, and Kelly Rapert, six, added to the cause.
Bret Price led the Bulldogs with seven as Dustin Roberson and Alex Chambers tossed in five and four, respectively, for the Bulldogs.