The undisputed top squad in Northeast Tennessee, Class AAA Dobyns-Bennett (26-3) was pushed to the limit before finally subduing Elizabethton 60-55 at John Treadway Gym.
A 72-46 loser at D-B just last weekend, Elizabethton (20-6) demonstrated this time that it’ll be a tough out in Class AA postseason play.
“Five-point loss to D-B after the way they took us to the woodshed last week, yeah, I’ll take it, I’ll take it,” said Elizabethton coach Lucas Honeycutt. “We had Carter Everett back this week and now I think we’re ready to go.”
TOO MUCH TRIBE
D-B trailed throughout much of the first half and was down 32-28 at intermission before finally drawing even at 35 with 5:12 left in the third period.
Behind the combination of speedy Marae Foreman and 6-foot-7 Charlie Browder, the Indians moved out to a 44-35 advantage only to see Nico Ashley and Everett bring the Cyclones back to a 50-50 deadlock with just over five minutes to play in the game.
However, Foreman scored on a pair of tough drives, Riamello Wadsworth nailed a patient 3-pointer from the wing and the Tribe hit the Cyclones with a fatal 8-3 blitz in the final 2:28.
“Foreman, he’s a handful and he kind of does it quietly sometimes, like if he’s not shooting well he’s doing other things quite well to help his team,” Honeycutt said. “He’s fast and he runs that offense very well and gets out in transition.
“And Browder, we failed to box out backside and he got a few easy ones over the top there late. It’s tough though, with his size and his strength.”
Foreman and Browder each finished with 16 points, and Wadsworth added 11. Britt Thomas made four 3s for 12 big points for D-B.
Elizabethton, which hit 10 3-pointers, was paced by the 17-point game of Evan Perkins. Ashley, who kicked in 14, Perkins and Everett each connected on three 3-pointers.
D-B GIRLS ROLL ON
Courtney Whitson closed out the regular season in style, pouring in 30 points to carry the Lady Indians to a 45-31 win over Elizabethton.
A 6-foot senior who owns the school career scoring record, Whitson hit four 3s on the night and pushed D-B (25-5) to a 24-17 halftime edge that the Tribe expanded to 41-26 through three quarters.
Abbey Townsend, Kaylen Shell and Kaitlin Bailey each scored eight to pace the Lady Cyclones (5-20).
Dobyns-Bennett begins play in the Big 7 Conference tournament.
Elizabethton enters the Three Rivers Conference tournament fray.