Wildcats slow Maryville’s roll
By Grant Ramey | (email@example.com)
Bearden early in the week served as district tournament prep. Then Oak Ridge later in the week was regional tournament prep.
Neither of the tests were passed by Maryville, but there was plenty to take away from what could be postseason previews for Mark Eldridge’s Rebels.
Rian Hall and Issac Merian each scored 10 points and Jaylin Henderson added 8 to help visiting Oak Ridge hang on in a back-and-forth 47-44 win over the host Rebels Thursday night.
“It was a good basketball game,” Eldridge said after the loss. “I thought it had a lot of tournament atmosphere.”
Maryville (19-6, 11-2), the No. 2 team in District 4-AAA, didn’t have a scorer reach double-figures against the Wildcats (20-4, 11-2), the No. 2 team in District 3-AAA.
Clark McCall and Issac Edmiston each scored 9 for the Rebels. Bryan Landers scored 8 and T.J. Kimble had 6.
“I thought the defense was good on both sides,” Eldridge said. “I thought both teams didn’t make a lot of shots, but both team’s defenses had a lot to do with that.”
Neither team could stretch a lead. Maryville could only manage a one-point advantage in the second half. Oak Ridge’s biggest margin was 6.
The Wildcats stretched it to 40-35 on the heels of a 6-0 run, just after a McCall field goal had given Maryville what would prove to be its last lead at 35-34.
“They got out 5 (points ahead) with about two minutes to go and we fought back,” Eldridge said.
A McCall 3-pointer did the fighting, cutting the Oak Ridge lead down to one, at 42-41, with 45 seconds left.
But that’s as close as the Rebels got in the final minute.
“We had the ball down one and ran our favorite play, our bread and butter play,” Eldridge said, “and we have a six-footer wide open and we just kind of fumble it away a little bit.
“We went ahead and tried to score it then instead of going for the last shot.”
Maryville has now lost three of its last four — falling to West last week, Bearden Tuesday and Oak Ridge Thursday — after going 16-1, including an 11-game win streak, over a 17-game span between Dec. 4 and Jan. 22.
“We’re fine,” Eldridge, whose team wraps up district play tonight at Heritage, said of the losses.
“I think one thing that has to do with it (is) playing three times a week. We haven’t had time to practice. Us not being on the court practicing, we haven’t got as many shots up, we’re not as good as some little things.
“I hope we get to see (Oak Ridge) again,” Eldridge continued, “They’re a good basketball team. I thought tonight was disappointing but also encouraging, simply for the fact that that’s as good as anybody (in the region tournament).
“We’re going to take a lot out of this.”
Lady Rebels 38, Oak Ridge 22
Scott West’s Lady Rebels held Oak Ridge to single-digit point production in all four quarters of a comfortable 38-22 win.
Leila Bangash led Maryville (13-10) with 16 points and Kayla Tille added 15, accounting for all but 7 of the Lady Rebels’ 38 points. Kat Pepperman scored 3 points while Paxton Robinette and Olivia Spears had 2 each.
Oak Ridge (12-10) was led by Whitney Mitchell’s 7. Savanna Johnson had 5 and Brook Anderson scored 4.
The Lady Wildcats scored 5 points in both the first and second quarter, 8 in the third and were held to 4 in the fourth quarter.
Maryville managed just 4 points in the third quarter, allowing Oak Ridge to cut the lead down to 8, at 28-20, but the Lady Rebels’ went on a 10-2 run to close the game and cushion the advantage.
Cancellation: Maryville’s boys and girls basketball games scheduled for Feb. 9 against Karns have been cancelled, it was announced Thursday night.
OAK RIDGE 47, REBELS 44
OR 7 13 7 20 — 47
M 8 11 7 18 — 44
OAK RIDGE (20-4): Rian Hall 10, Issac Merian 10, Jaylin Henderson 8, Xavier Maddox 7, Cory Fagon 6, Rashad Gray 4, Kevin Steen 2.
MARYVILLE (19-6): Clark McCall 9, Issac Edmiston 9, Bryan Landers 8, T.J. Kimble 6, John Garrett 5, Grant Wilson 2, Bryce Miller 2, Tyler Vaught 2.
3-POINTERS: Oak Ridge 5 (Fagon 2, Maddox 2, Henderson 1); Maryville 5 (Landers 2, Kimble 1, Edmiston 1, Garrett 1)
LADY REBELS 38, OAK RIDGE 22
OR 5 5 8 4 — 22
M 11 10 4 13 — 38
OAK RIDGE (12-10): Whitney Mitchell 7, Savanna Johnson 5, Brook Anderson 4, Asia Anderson 3, Kendra Holmes 3.
MARYVILLE (13-10): Leila Bangash 16, Kayla Tillie 15, Kat Pepperman 3, Paxton Robinette 2, Olivia Spears 2.
3-POINTERS: Oak Ridge 1 (Johnson); Maryville 1 (Bangash)