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BHS girls 2nd at Stone

Despite missing one of the area’s top inside players to injury for the better part of two games, Bearden’s Lady Bulldogs still enjoyed a top tourney finish.

Nathan Hodges’ BHS girls took second among a six-team field at the King of the Mountain Thanksgiving Tournament in Crossville, hosted by Stone Memorial High School.

Losing standout 6-foot-1 junior post Mary Hirst to what Hodges described as a “lower limb injury” early in its pool play game versus Meigs County, BHS still won 77-51 before falling to host Stone Memorial 71-62 in the finals Saturday, Nov. 24.

With or without Hirst, “I felt we got better in the three games that we played, and that’s what we’re looking for early in the season,” Hodges said.

However, “We’re still pretty inconsistent, where we’ll play real well at times and then have some stretches where we’re not playing at the level that I hope we can get to later in the year.”

Hodges said he hopes to have Hirst back by Friday at Heritage or next Tuesday, Dec. 4, against Maryville at BHS.

Despite the finals loss, Bearden (2-1 record entering the week) had five players reach double figures scoring, led by Sarah Canter and Rikki Sanders with 13 points each.

Jenna Maynard and Ellen Smith each added 11, with Shayla McDaniel scoring 10.

“We had some young players step up ... we played some sophomores that really hadn’t had any experience at the varsity level.”

That included Smith, a 6-foot-2 sophomore filling in for Hirst, and McDaniel, a 5-foot-9 sophomore guard/post.

“Shayla’s really stepped up for us on the defensive end guarding one of Stone Memorial’s best guards,” Hodges said. “Ellen Smith really picked up some of Mary’s scoring. She really stepped up and played well.”

Against Meigs Wednesday, Nov. 21, in second round pool play the Lady Bulldogs were led by Smith’s 20 points and 15 rebounds.

Next was Sanders with 17, followed by Canter 12, Hirst eight, Maynard seven, Taylor Cravanas five and Joy McCuen and McDaniel four apiece.

Bearden opened tournament play Monday, Nov. 19, by beating Lebanon 71-62. Hirst led the scoring parade with 19 followed by Sanders’ 16.


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