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’Dawgs roll twice

There are two goals for the Bearden Bulldogs basketball team right now.

The first is execution and the second is getting as many players as possible in game shape.

Bearden succeeded on both of its goals as 11 Bulldog players got in the scoring book in a 68-38 rout at home against Sevier County Friday, Feb. 1.

The Bulldogs (24-2, 10-2 in District 4-AAA entering the week) jumped out to an 8-2 lead on Sevier County (11-12, 2-9) and never looked back. Junior Demonte Simpson led Bearden with 13 points while fellow junior Gabe Campbell had 12.

Bearden continued to control the pace of the game and took a 29-16 lead into halftime, but it wasn’t until the second half the Bulldogs really showed their dominance.

“I thought we played a lot better in the second half,” Bearden head coach Mark Blevins said. “Overall everybody had fun tonight.”

Turnovers were a problem for the Bulldogs in first half, but Bearden took care of the ball much better in the final two quarters.

“Andy [Fennell] had five turnovers in the first half and I don’t think he had any in the second half, so he played much better in the second half,” Blevins said. “We are trying to get our execution down and get in game shape.”

For senior Marcus Webb, getting ahead early and putting the opponent away was the number one priority for the Bulldogs heading into this game.

“We just really wanted to come out and get them early so hopefully they would fall off,” said Webb, who finished with six points on two 3-point field goals. “That’s what a lot of teams do, so we were trying to come out here, up the pace a little bit and just go from there.”

Junior Dustin Craig had 11 points for the Bulldogs and provided a solid compliment to the inside presence of Simpson.

Others scoring for Bearden were Nathan Parker with eight, Matt Ternes eight, and two each for Andy Fennell, DeShawn Oravetz, Josh Collins, Lawson and Fair.

“We are playing really good as a team,” Webb said. “We are trying to build up the wins and get ready for the playoffs.”

Bearden has been a tough opponent for every team it has played this season, but one team that has had its number is Maryville. Despite the two overtime losses to the Rebels, the Bulldogs are looking forward and just concentrating on playing as well as they can.

“We are just going out and playing our game,” Webb said. “We know we will get another chance at [Maryville] in the playoffs and that is where it really matters.”

With each game, the Bulldogs feel they are improving and turning into the team they want to be. With only four regular season games left before the playoffs, Bearden thinks it will be peaking at the right time of the year.

“We are not there yet,” Webb said. “But we will be by the time we see Maryville again. It’s going to be a different game.”

BHS 83 WEBB 42

Bearden destroyed Webb 83-42 Monday, Jan. 28, at BHS. The ’Dawgs took a 25-2 lead after one quarter and never looked back.

Craig and Parker led Bearden with 16 points each. Others scoring for BHS were Simpson 13, Blake Jenkins nine, Gabe Campbell eight, David Upchurch seven, Ternes four, Benji Ware three, Webb two, Fennell two and Gaylen Campbell one.


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