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Bearden routes Govs, Lady Govs

Rust or rest, which was more telling for Bearden’s Lady Bulldogs Tuesday night? History perhaps dictates rest.

Perhaps it comes down to which side of the court you focus upon when evaluating the effects of BHS’s 18-day layoff.

Defensively against William Blount (3-11, 0-6 in District 4-AAA), the Lady Bulldogs looked well rested, holding WB scoreless for a 12:32 stretch of the first half en route to a 44-28 win Jan. 5, at BHS.

“Last year we had a long break ... because of snow where we didn’t play for a week, and actually had a few days off because we couldn’t practice,” Bearden head coach Nathan Hodges said about unexpected rest last season aiding his team’s run to district and Region 2-AAA championships.

“After that break it seemed that we were able to build momentum and play really well in postseason,” he added. “This year, with a team that’s not really deep, you don’t want to wear them out in practice, or play a lot of stuff over Christmas that wears them out. ... Just to refresh their batteries a little bit.”

Shayla McDaniel’s 16 points led Bearden, which improves to 8-3 overall, 5-1 in 4-AAA.

Meanwhile, the BHS boys roll along undefeated, using a 23-0 first quarter run to easily push aside William Blount 73-44 to improve its record to 15-0 overall, 6-0 in 4-AAA (More on BHS boys later in this story).

Hodges said McDaniel, a senior forward, “had a really good game in the second half offensively, and to hold [Tatum] Burstorm to just five points, and only one field goal for the game, I thought was really good on the defensive end.”

Bearden also struggled offensively in the first half, scoring only one point during a 7:23 stretch but leading 18-10 at halftime.

Admitting to a bit of rust showing offensively, Hodges said, “We were a little out of sync ... a little out of rhythm.”

McDaniel said, “Our shots weren’t falling in the first half, but we weren’t too rusty.”

Taylor Cravanas, senior guard, added 13 for BHS, while Jai-Jai McLaughlin scored seven, Mary-Mc Alexander four and two each for Sara Burklin and Ellen Smith.

Sami Van Vraken, the Lady Govs’ top offensive threat, scored 13.

Rico White, junior wing, and Will Winton, junior post, led Bearden’s boys with 14 points each.

Spencer Peake, junior post, added 11 as did junior guard Ty Greene.

Despite his team’s 15-0 start, Greene said, “I think we’re at about 60 percent of where we could be. We’ve got guys coming off injuries. We still hadn’t played our best game. We’ve got a lot of improvement to do.”

Drew Standifer scored seven, Jaeland Lawson and Chris Phillips four each, DeQuan Wright and Dion Fair three apiece and Jordan Wall two points.

Micah Ballard’s 21 points led William Blount (8-6, 2-4).


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