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Huskies sweep ‘Landers in basketball action

BY NIC MILLER
STAR CORRESPONDENT

BAILEYTON – It was a cold and wet Friday evening in the area as weather enthusiasts and meteorologists alike were calling for snowfall across East Tennessee.

But when snowfall didn’t show, there was still one thing that would be happening heading into the weekend – high school basketball.

It was the Cloudland Highlanders making the hour-long drive Friday as they would travel to take on the Huskies of North Greene in both boys and girls hardwood action.

As always, it was the girls’ squads that got things started, and the Lady Highlanders found themselves in a hole early with North Greene jumping out to a 14-7 lead after one.

However, the second quarter was a different story as the Lady Highlanders came roaring back and outscored the Lady Huskies 20-13, going into the half knotted up with North Greene, 27 apiece.

The third period saw the Lady Highlanders take a slim lead in the ball game, and after changing advantages with the Lady Huskies throughout the quarter, Cloudland went into the final quarter of play with the momentum, up 42-37

After it was all said and done, the Lady Huskies were able to come back in the late stages as a last-second shot by Cloudland to take the lead was no good, giving North Greene the sim victory, 51-50.

In the effort, the Lady Highlanders were led by Mandy Benfield with 12 points, followed by Izabella Christman who scored 11 points, and Jasmine Birchfield who put up nine points of her own.

And after a short intermission, it was time for the boy’s matchup to take place. Much like the last, this was a very tightly contested matchup from the start, with North Greene taking the early advantage after the first stanza, 18-13.

The second quarter of play saw the Highlanders begin to draw much closer than in the first, as North Greene’s lead was cut to just three at the break, 32-29.

While the Highlanders were able to keep things close for the majority of the third, a surge by the Huskies propelled them to an eight-point lead going into the final period, 51-43.

With the momentum on their side, North Greene caught fire in the final quarter of play, going on to defeat Cloudland by a score of 82-60.

In the loss, the Highlanders were led by Caleb Sluder with 21 points while Bentley Gilbert put up 11 and Victor Hicks scored nine.