T.A. Dugger sweeps HV

By Ivan Sanders

   The T.A. Dugger Jr. Cyclones blew through the Dugger gym like the wind that howled through the barren trees on Thursday, as the boys and girls' eighth-grade teams came away with resounding victories.
   In opening action, the Jr. Lady Cyclones managed to pull away from the Jr. Lady Warriors in the latter part of the second period and ran away with a 44-21 opening season win.
   "All the girls were a little scared and jittery to start the game, and were worrying about making mistakes," said Jr. Lady Cyclone head coach Angie Barker. "We told them to relax and they started to play like a team late in the second quarter by playing tough defense as well as making really great passes on offense."
   Jasmine Treadway paced the Lady 'Clones with 10 points, six of those coming in the third period when TAD turned a 25-10 halftime advantage into a 40-12 edge by the end of the quarter. Hannah Fritz and Kelli Culler tossed in eight points each to aid the TAD cause.
   A couple more players that Coach Barker was pleased with were Leah Henson and Mariah Pietrowski.
   "Pietrowski really stepped up and played well," stated Barker. "We were also pleased with Henson, who has improved her game and is playing like we want her to."
   Leading the charge for the Lady Warriors was Hannah Banks, who hit for eight points, followed by Courtney Byers coming off the bench with five points. Leandra Mullins and Summer Ward chipped in with four points each for Happy Valley.
   Said HV coach Dana Hill: "We played with a very talented team early, but those last three minutes of the second quarter they made a run and we never could catch up. I thought Hannah Banks and Amber Dugger did a great job handling their pressure. We can build on the simply fact that we were able to play with such a talented team as Dugger has."
   With the win, the Jr. Lady Cyclones are 1-0 on the young season while Happy Valley dropped to 0-3, having lost to Vance and Gray in the early going.
   The Lady Warriors host Unaka on Tuesday. TAD visits Vance next Thursday.
   T.A. Dugger 48
   Happy Valley 13
   The T.A. Dugger boys team picked up where the girls left off, as TAD raced out to a 13-3 first-quarter lead and never looked back in taking the lopsided affair.
   Riding the hot hand of Bo Carter, who scored all 11 of his game-high total in the first half, the Jr. Cyclones were never really challenged as Ryan Green also netted 11 points to keep the fire on the Jr. Warriors.
   "The guys did a great job in bouncing back after a tough loss to Bluff City in overtime by showing tremendous heart out there on the court," said Jr. Cyclone coach James Jacobs. "It was definitely a team effort and I thought the defense held when it had to."
   David Martin added nine points, including five of five from the foul line for TAD, while Brent Thomas tossed in five and Ryan Birchfield added four points along with Aaron Bradford for the Jr. Cyclones.
   Happy Valley received six points from Jesse Richardson to show the way for the Jr. Warriors. Nathan Whitson, Tyler Blevins and Cody Hyder pitched in with two points each while Nathan Kapoor closed out the scoring with a free throw.
   "This was really an improvement for us after we had a really good practice yesterday," said Happy Valley coach Rik Anderson. "If we can keep on coming out and doing one or two good things each game, we should be able to get to a level where we are ready to play with some of these teams like TAD."
   TAD evened its record at 1-1 on the season and will play against Vance at home next Thursday. Happy Valley entertains Unaka on Monday.
   7th-grade boys
   T.A. Dugger 31
   Happy Valley 23
   T.A. Dugger's seventh grade boys improved to 2-0 on the young basketball season with a 31-23 win over Happy Valley.
   Jared Lyons paced the Jr. Cyclone squad with 10 points, while Zac Montgomery, Kendall Walsh and Vic Deloach added seven points apiece in the the T.A. Dugger win.