By Ed Greif
The CCHS basketball teams closed out their regular season Tuesday night by dropping a pair of games at Clarkrange. The Lady Jets were beaten 68-49, while the Jets lost 64-51 before a standing-room only crowd in the host's gym on senior night.
Clarkrange 68, Lady Jets 49: Kara Meadows opened the Clarkrange scoring with a jumper; however, the Clarkrange students created their own "blizzard," throwing toilet paper on the floor, resulting in a technical foul. Makenzie Iles nailed the two freebies, but the Lady Buffaloes finished the quarter with a 19-11 run for a 21-13 lead.
Meadows had eight points for the Lady Buffaloes, who were eight of 12 from the field with four turnovers, while the Lady Jets were five of 17 with one turnover.
Things went down hill from there, as CCHS couldn't buy a bucket, going one of 12 from the field and one of four from the charity stripe with six turnovers, with the hosts taking a 37-16 lead at the break.
Clarkrange cooled off slightly hitting five of 13 from the floor with six turnovers.
The teams exchanged baskets throughout the third quarter, as CCHS outscored Clarkrange 13-12 to slice the gap to 49-29. Iles and Gina Dick each had four points for CCHS, which was six of nine from the field with six miscues.
Dick and Iles each scored five points in the fourth quarter, as the Lady Jets outscored Clarkrange 20-19 for the final margin of 68-49.
Statistical leaders for CCHS were Iles (13 points, six rebounds, five steals), Dick (10 points, three rebounds, two assists, one steals) Alli Hyder (three points, one assist), Destiny Carlton (seven points, three rebounds, two assists, five steals), Victoria Lee (two rebounds, one steal); Rebekah Teeple (eight points, five rebounds, three assists, one steal), Klaire Varney (two points, one rebound) and Courtney Smith (four points, four rebounds, two steals). Kelsie Eldridge also played.
The win avenged CCHS' 86-81 loss on Nov. 22. Clarkrange posted a 5-1 against District 6AAA teams this season - spliting with CCHS; sweeping SMHS (76-36, 56-37), sweeping Cookeville (60-43, 69-49) and beating White County once (70-63). The Lady Buffaloes own one win over District 5AAA foe McMinn County (80-59), which finished in a second-place tie in District 5AAA with Walker Valley.
Schedule: The Lady Jets (24-4) open District 6AAA Tournament play Saturday at 3 p.m. at Cookeville High School against the Rhea County/Stone Memorial winner. CCHS split with Rhea County during the regular season and swept SMHS.
Clarkrange 64, Jets 51: The standing room only crowd Tuesday night saw another "blizzard" occur, after Ronnie Siems scored on a putback basket early in the quarter.
Jet senior Logan Parsons converted the two techincal foul shots to the tie the game at 2-2. After Landon Baldwin's lay-up gave the Buffaloes a 4-2, the Jets buried three straight treys — one by Parsons and two by Austin Brown — for an 11-4 lead with 3:38 left in the first quarter.
A hook shot by Siems triggered a 6-4 run to slice the Jet lead to 15-12 by quarter's end.
Clarkrange opened the second quarter with a 7-0 run for a 19-15 advantage and went on to outscore CCHS 12-11 for a 32-26 lead at the break.
Brown and Cade Smith each six points in the first half for the Jets, who were nine of 30 from the field and three of three from the charity stripe. Baldwin had 10 points for the Buffaloes, who were 12 of 23 from the field and two of two from the charity stripe with six turnovers.
Clarkrange led 39-28 on a three-point play by Siems, but a jumper by Parsons started an 11-6 run to slice the gap to 45-39; however, the Buffaloes finished the stanza with a 6-0 run for a 51-39 lead.
The Buffaloes opened the final quarter with an 8-0 run, before treys by Poore and Parsons stopped the bleeding at 59-48 with 2:38 remaining in the game. Clarkrange finished the quarter with a 5-3 run for the final margin of victory.
Statistical leaders for the Jets were Poore (five poins, four rebounds, five assists), Alex Dixson (two assists), Drew Vaden (one rebound), Tanner Christopher (two points), Brown (six points), Smith (13 points, one rebound, one steal), Blake McLaughlin (two points, five rebounds, one assist, one steal), Parsons (21 points, four rebounds, one assist, two steals) and Ty Tabor (two points, four rebounds, one steal). David Elliott and Brandon Myers also played.
Schedule: The Jets (10-16) open District 6AAA Tournament play Friday at 7:30 p.m. against Warren County at Cookeville. CCHS won both regular season meetings over the Pioneers.