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Public Notices

April 23, 2014

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A Look At Local Hoops Teams Heading Into The Holidays

Originally published: 2012-12-22 00:23:04
Last modified: 2012-12-27 14:52:49
 

BY WAYNE PHILLIPS

SPORTS EDITOR EMERITUS

The break for the Christmas holidays is a good time to look at the area basketball teams, and who is hot and who is not as the teams prepare for holiday tournaments and the second half of the 2012-13 campaign, which begins immediately when teams return from break.

The five local schools are members of two separate conferences. Greeneville, South Greene, West Greene and Chuckey-Doak are part of the seven-team Blue Ridge Athletic Conference, which is District 2-AA as designated by the TSSAA, while North Greene belongs to the five-team Mountain East Conference, or District 1-A.

There are no major surprises in either league as yet, although the University High boys and the Unaka girls in the Mountain East might be the source of most looks as coaches begin the final push toward the district tournaments, which begin in February.

As for the local schools, the Greeneville boys are at the head of the pack in the Blue Ridge with Chuckey-Doak right on their heels. South Greene's girls are in second place in the girls' standings.

North Greene's girls sustained a blow on Thursday night when they lost at Unaka, but when the state rankings are released for the first time in January, the Lady Huskies are expected to be one of the teams in that top 10 list, or at least among those being considered.

Here's a rundown of the local teams and how the first half of the season has gone:

BLUE RIDGE BOYS

*Greeneville's Greene Devils are 4-0 in league play and 10-3 overall, with the losses coming to Class AAA powers Science Hill and Dobyns-Bennett, plus a season opening setback to Austin East of Knoxville. The Devils will face tough competition next week at the Maryville Invitational, which begins on Wednesday with GHS facing off against the host school. They will play at least three games in that tournament.

"Next to the Arby's (at Bristol), I've been told this is the second strongest tournament in East Tennessee over the holidays," GHS Coach Brad Woolsey said last week. "It will be a challenge for us, but at the same time it'll be good for us."

*Chuckey-Doak's Black Knights are 4-1 in the conference and 7-6 overall. As expected in the preseason predictions, the Knights can be a factor in the Blue Ridge hunt this year. Their only loss was a close setback at Cumberland Gap. The Knights play next week in the Sullivan North Invitational and take on Unicoi County in their first match.

*South Greene's boys are 2-9 overall and 1-3 in league play. The season is probably going as expected, as the young Rebs had very little experience going into the campaign. But they have been competitive and could pull some surprises in the second half. The Rebs are also in the Sullivan North Invitational next week and will play Sullivan Central in their opener.

*West Greene is still hunting for their first win as they stand at 0-10 and 0-4 in the league. The Buffs are off until after the Christmas break.

Cumberland Gap appears on track to be a contender in the league as they are 3-1, 7-3 overall, and own a win over Chuckey-Doak. The Panthers' only league loss was to Greeneville. The Gap is playing this weekend in the Union County Classic with games against Gibbs and Union County.

Grainger is at 2-3 in the Blue Ridge and 5-10 overall. Claiborne is at 1-3 in the league and 3-7 overall. Both teams are in the Union County Classic this weekend.

BLUE RIDGE GIRLS

Thus far nobody has been able to hang with the Grainger Lady Grizzlies, who are unbeaten at 13-0, 5-0 in the conference. They've had very few struggles thus far in the campaign and are expected to be among the top-ranked teams in Class AA when state rankings are released next month. They may be tested next week when they play in an event at White County in Sparta.

Among the local teams:

*South Greene is 9-4 overall and 3-1 in the league, losing on the road at Grainger. The loss of Alora Ricker to an ankle injury a couple of weeks ago has been a blow, but the Lady Rebs are capable. They play next week at Hal Henard in the Landair Ladies' Classic, with Shelbyville as their opening foe.

*Chuckey-Doak's Lady Knights are the defending Region 1 champs and they have played much better than many thought they would entering the campaign. They are 5-8 overall but 3-2 in league play. Their first round Ladies' Classic opponent is Charlotte Christian (N.C.).

*Greeneville High stands at 4-8 overall and 2-2 in the conference. The Lady Devils have been up and down thus far but also are capable. They open in the Ladies' Class Wednesday against Holy Name of Parma Heights, Ohio.

*West Greene has struggled with a 1-10 worksheet and 0-4 in the league. Blessed with one of the top post players in the area in Charlotte Murphy, opponents are focusing on stopping Murphy and the Buffs are looking for some other players to step up. They play Wilson Central Wednesday in the Classic.

Claiborne (2-2, 5-6) and Cumberland Gap (0-4, 0-8) are both playing this weekend in the Union County Classic.

MOUNTAIN EAST BOYS

In what is always a rugged district race, the University High boys are off to the best start at 3-0, 9-2 overall, and already own wins over North Greene, Hampton and Unaka. The Bucs are playing in an event at Virginia High in Bristol this weekend.

Unaka, with a win over North Greene on Thursday, is at 1-1, 6-4 overall, and will be a factor in the race. They play in the Daniel Boone Classic next week.

Hampton, 9-3 overall and 0-1 in the league, will also be in the hunt. They play in a tournament at Harriman next week.

Cloudland is yet to play a league game but the Highlanders are 8-3 overall and will play in the Knox Bearden Super 16 Tournament next week.

North Greene stands at 10-4 and is off until after the break. They have two league setbacks, to University High and to Unaka.

MOUNTAIN EAST GIRLS

The girls' race in District 1-A has become as competitive as the boys, with three and possibly four teams capable of winning the title.

North Greene is off to a great start at 12-2, but the loss to Unaka on Thursday left them at 1-1 in the standings. They are without the services of post Laiken Morrow for awhile with a damaged ankle. The Huskies play next week in the Classic with Rockcastle County (Ky.) as their opening foe on Wednesday.

Unaka is now 2-0 in the league and looking strong. They are 7-5 overall and will play in a tournament at Daniel Boone next week.

Don't forget Hampton, 9-3 overall and 1-0 in the league. The Lady Bulldogs had a game on Friday with Johnson County, host Austin-East tonight, then play in the Daniel Boone tourney next week.

Cloudland, 2-7 overall and 0-0 in the league, is off to a disappointing start but has some talent. They play in a tourney at Lenoir City next week.

University High's Lady Bucs are 4-6 overall and 0-3 in the district. They will also compete in the Daniel Boone event next week.

HALFWAY HOME

Most teams are halfway through their schedules, and much is left to be decided when teams return for district games week after next.

It should be an exciting second half.

BLUE RIDGE GIRLS

Team Conf. Overall

Grainger 5-0 13-0

South Greene 3-1 9-4

Chuckey-Doak 3-2 5-8

Claiborne 2-2 5-6

Greeneville 2-2 4-8

West Greene 0-4 1-10

Cumberland Gap 0-4 0-8

BLUE RIDGE BOYS

Team Conf. Overall

Greeneville 4-0 10-3

Chuckey-Doak 4-1 7-6

Cumberland Gap 3-1 7-3

Grainger 2-3 5-10

Claiborne 1-3 3-7

South Greene 1-3 2-9

West Greene 0-4 0-10

MOUNTAIN EAST GIRLS

Team Conf. Overall

Unaka 2-0 7-5

Hampton 1-0 9-3

North Greene 1-1 12-2

Cloudland 0-0 2-7

University 0-3 4-6

MOUNTAIN EAST BOYS

Team Conf. Overall

University 3-0 9-2

Unaka 1-1 6-4

Cloudland 0-0 8-3

Hampton 0-1 9-3

North Greene 0-2 10-4

 
For more information and stories, see The Greeneville Sun.

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