BHS, THS split wins
BELGREEN — Three players came up big for the Belgreen Bulldogs in their 81-59 win over the Tharptown Wildcats Friday night.
Brock Hester had 25 points and eight rebounds on the night, leading the Bulldogs and the game in scoring.
Chase Landers had 21 and Josh DeVaney amassed 17. DeVaney also had an extremely impressive game on the boards by pulling down 17 rebounds, matching his point total and netting him a double-double.
With production like that from Belgreen’s key players, the Wildcats just simply could not keep up.
The Bulldogs had a 6-5 lead in the early goings before making a 12-0 run, giving them an 18-5 advantage.
Tharptown would score only seven more points in the first, but Belgreen would add 10 more.
Belgreen fell off of that blistering scoring pace some in the second quarter, and both teams tied with 12 points scored in the period before halftime, which saw the Bulldogs take a 43-24 edge into the locker room.
“That is probably the best our offense has played all year,” Belgreen head coach Greg Watson said. “We took the ball to the paint more, and we were more aggressive on offense.”
The Bulldogs and Wildcats both stayed on the same offensive pace they had in the second quarter during the third.
Belgreen outscored Tharptown 17-14 in that eight-minute period, and the Wildcats could do nothing to slow down their opponent or make up any of the difference on the scoreboard.
Both teams began firing on all cylinders on offense in the fourth and final quarter.
Belgreen scored 21 points in the final eight minutes to Tharptown’s 22, but this was not enough to make much of a dent in Belgreen’s lead, and the Bulldogs picked up an area win over a county rival by a 22-point margin.
“Hopefully we will continue to gain confidence as we play,” Watson said. “There are some things we didn’t do right. Brock and some other players stepped up for us tonight, and Josh had his best all-around game of the season.”
Also scoring for the Bulldogs on the night were: Dustin Smith (6), Nick Miller (5), Jared Mitchell (3), Hugo Castillo (2), and Dakota Davis (2).
Belgreen also hit 13-14 free throws on the night, which effectively complimented the Bulldogs’ production on offense.
Riley Nolen was the leading scorer for Tharptown on the night with 17. Kelby Hallmark had 15, and Max Nolen added 10.
Also scoring for the Wildcats were: Will Little (5), Blake Gray (4), Colton Blankenship (4) and Patrick Tharp (4).
The Tharptown Lady Wildcats kept rolling past their area opponents with a 23-point victory over county rival Belgreen at 66-43.
The win puts Tharptown at 6-0 in the area with the county and area tournaments quickly approaching.
The Lady Wildcats took the drivers seat early in the game by scoring 12 points before Belgreen made it onto the scoreboard.
The first quarter ended with Tharptown ahead 16-4, and Belgreen would be unable to go on top throughout the rest of the game.
“We’re 6-0 in the area now, and we have two area games coming up next week against Vina and Phillips,” Tharptown head coach Chad Green said. “We are definitely planning for the area tournament. Our big goal is to try and win it and host the sub-regional game.”
The Lady Bulldogs battled back in the second quarter, outscoring the Lady Wildcats 20-14. Tharptown took a 30-24 lead into the break, and after halftime the Lady Wildcats began rolling yet again.
It was 50-33 near the start of the fourth quarter after several points by Tharptown in the third.
The Lady Wildcats held Belgreen at bay on defense, and the team ended up with the area and county win over their rival.
“Belgreen and Hackleburg have good teams that have both had a lot of improvement,” Green said.
“Coach Humphres has done a great job at Vina, and he has some great guards. The first time we played Belgreen it was nip and tuck, but tonight we put more pressure on them. We’ve got to handle the ball better, but we’ll get better as we go.”
Kamri Sears led Tharptown and the game in points with 24. Danielle Creasy had 14 and Kassy Baker added 9.
Also scoring for the Lady Wildcats were: Haley Malone (4), Kaitlyn Vandiver (4), Jessica Wilson (3), Katherine Alfaro (2), Savannah Robinson (2) and Erica Valdez (2).
Allyson Bragwell was the leading scorer for Belgreen with 17 points. Also scoring for the Lady Bulldogs were: Lexie Bragwell (6), Mollie Hester (5), Abby Hester (5), Laken Bragwell (4), Hanna Taylor (4) and Katelynn Scott (2).
—stats kept by Jeremy Reed