Middle School Hoops: T.A. Dugger falls to Greeneville, 31-29

Published 1:44 pm Friday, December 7, 2018

Neither team could get many shots to fall.

The Jr. Greene Devils, however, found just enough to take a 31-29 win over the Jr. Cyclones at T.A. Dugger Thursday.

Coming out of the first half, the Jr. Cyclones held a minimal 14-11 lead over Greeneville as TAD’s Nate Stephens, Dalton Mitchell, and Peyton Johnson each rang the nets for four points each in the first two quarters.

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The Jr. Cyclones went cold in the third frame as they only managed two points in the quarter as the Jr. Greene Devils posted seven to hold an 18-16 lead heading into the fourth quarter.

Greeneville’s Jayquan Price played a big role in the Jr. Cyclones’ downfall in the fourth. Price was untouchable as he posted nine of the Greene Devils’ 13 fourth-points. T.A. Dugger had 11 points in the quarter.

“We wanted to get some easy baskets,” said T.A. Dugger head coach Barry Johnson. “We were trying to get some points off our defense. So we ended up pressing and trying to trap, and we left him (Price) open a few times. We knew he could shoot. He hurt us down at Greeneville.”

T.A. Dugger battled in the fourth as Mitchell and Stephens had six and five points, respectively in the frame. Mitchell got hot as he knocked down a fadeaway jumper and a guarded three to keep the Jr. Cyclones in the mix.

“The things I like about Dalton is he is subject to get hot and carry the team,” said Johnson. “I thought that was going to be the case in that little stretch that he had. It wasn’t his best shooting night, but he had a lot of guts tonight. So did a lot of our guys tonight.”

Mitchell finished the game with ten points while Stephens recorded nine. Johnson and T.A. Dugger’s Kordell Kandoje each had four in the contest.

For Greeneville, Mason Laws and Price had ten points each.

Heading into Thursday’s game, the Jr. Cyclones were without two key starters in guard Cade Russell and center Bradley Cannon.

“Cade is a big part of what we do, and Bradley is one of our more improved players and is big for us on the inside,” said Johnson. “We definitely┬ámissed them tonight.”

The loss moved the Jr. Cyclones to 7-3 on the season and 3-3 in their conference. Greeneville and T.A. Dugger have split in their season series with the Jr. Cyclones winning the first time the two teams met this year.