Bobcats are impressive in 70-48 win over Halls

By Steve Williams

Central had a new look when it took the court against Halls in the District 3-4A basketball tournament on Feb. 14.

“The last time we played this team they were beating us for the first 29 minutes and we won the last three minutes,” recalled first-year head coach Marcus Huie. “The difference this time was we started off fast. We played as a team. We shared the basketball. We moved without the basketball on the offensive end. On the defensive end, we helped each other out.

“Not only that, we made sure (we knew) who the main guy was for Halls, which is No. 2 for them, Jake Lane. He’s a heck of a player. The kids just followed the game plan. We knew he was their leader.”

The Bobcats ran off and left the Red Devils in posting a 70-48 victory. Halls committed 10 turnovers in the first period as Central took a 19-8 lead. It was 36-25 at halftime and 57-33 after three stops.

“The best thing about this basketball team tonight,” said Coach Huie. “It finally showed that when we are in offensive transition, we can be one of the best basketball teams in Knoxville, maybe even in East Tennessee. That’s where we hurt them the most.”

JD Harris (17 points), Reggie Jones (14) and Josh Brown (10) led the scoring. Efrain Pastrana chipped in nine.

Jones did a good job directing his teammates offensively, noted the Central coach. Brown owned the paint and hit two 3s on the outside. Harris had his normal night and really helped on defense and in rebounding.

“To be honest, that might have been our best basketball of the entire year,” said Coach Huie.

Central, the No. 4 seed, was scheduled to face No. 1 seed Oak Ridge Friday night. Win or lose, the Bobcats will play in the Region 2-4A tournament Tuesday night.

“The job is still not finished,” said Huie. “Oak Ridge, they are the kings.”

Kaiden Stanton led Halls’ balanced attack with 11 points. Lane, Gabe Holmes and Evan Workman scored nine points each for Coach Clint Sharp’s Red Devils. Jarrell Chandler added eight.


Powell ousts Campbell County

Powell, the No. 3 seed, put Campbell County out of the tournament with a 47-33 win.

The Panthers led 25-14 at halftime.

Veteran PHS Coach Gary Barnes concurred that elimination games can be kind of scary. “They are for the coaches for sure,” he said. “I don’t know if the kids get that much wrapped up into it. We try not to talk about it a whole lot. We just wanted to be who we are, play relaxed and they were able to do that for the most part. Shooting was not good; maybe that had a little something to do with it.”

Barnes said his team’s defense was really good in the do-or-die game. “We held their best two players (Number 5 and 12) to a total of 17 points. I was proud of that.”

Noah Brewer led Powell with 16 points. Nathan Russell contributed 10 points, Kaleb Walker nine and Deuce Rodgers seven. Luke Browning (12) and Tyler Kitts (11) were top scorers for the Cougars.

The victory upped Powell’s record to 22-6. The Panthers were scheduled to play Karns in the semifinals Friday. The Panthers and Beavers split their two regular season games.


District 3-4A Boys Schedule

At Central

Tuesday, Feb. 20


Consolation Game

6:00-Central vs. Karns


Championship Game

7:30-Oak Ridge vs. Powell