Hampton draws split with Claiborne

By Travis Brown

   The Hampton High School boys basketball program is taking it to the next level as the Bulldogs continue to defeat quality programs. Tuesday night they silenced the Claiborne County Blue Devils by a score of 75-61.
   Despite the solid victory, the girls continued to struggle as they fell to a very capable Lady Devil squad, 51-29.
   After the contest Lady 'Dogs head coach Leslie Campbell was concerned about her team's play.
   "We were not ready," said Campbell "We're not consistent right now."
   The Lady Bulldogs got off on the wrong foot as they fell behind 18-7 after the first period. The Lady Devils were dominant in all facets of the contest, playing well underneath as well as on the foul line.
   Going 17-for-19 from the free stripe helped to pace the Devils throughout the contest, as defensively they were able to contain the Bulldogs' solid shooting.
   The second half saw a good third quarter from the Lady 'Dogs as they fought back to get in the ballgame. Kari Stout, who led the Dogs with 15, scored six in the third to keep it close heading into the fourth period.
   The fourth would not be so kind, however, as Katasha Brown and Ashley Keck slammed the door with good defense and foul shooting to close out the 22-point victory.
   In the nightcap, the Bulldog boys team continued to show good team unity and hustle to secure a the victory against the Blue Devils.
   Early on Jeremy Hall topped the Bulldogs as he put eight points on the board in the first quarter with good work inside and punishing defense on the other end.
   A halfcourt three-pointer at the end of the first quarter pulled the Devils to within two heading to the second stanza.
   Both teams would pick up the pace in the second quarter as Grant Honeycutt stepped up for the Bulldogs. During the second quarter the stifling Hampton defense was the key for the 'Dogs as it helped extend the lead to eight heading into the locker room.
   The good defensive pressure continued in the second half while Ryan Deskins came off the bench to score 13 points over the final two quarters and keep the pressure on the Devils.
   Meanwhile the Blue Devils simply could not keep up, despite an 18-point effort from Tony Brogan. The towering post player was prone to turnovers though, and late in the fourth quarter his shooting was only contributor on the floor for the Devils.
   Despite a respectable effort, the Blue Devils fell to the impressive Dogs by 14 in an all-around, well-played contest.
   Afterwards, skipper Jerry White was impressed with his team's performance.
   "I'm pretty well pleased," said White. "The effort was good and our defense played well."
   White is still looking to improve his team, however, as this Friday will bring a key home matchup with the Warriors of Happy Valley.
   "They're always tough," White said. "We have to work on rebounding a little more, and we have to shoot well from the foul line."