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Greene, Dawgs rip Irish, advanced to 4-AAA title game

MARYVILLE - Ty Greene scored 25 points to lead the way as Bearden defeated Knoxville Catholic 80-56 in the Region 4-AAA District Tournament semifinals at William Blount High School Monday night, Feb. 21.

It was Bearden's third victory of the season over Catholic (20-8) and followed a familiar script.

“Ty played an excellent game in the second half, all good shots, and took the ball to the hole strong,” BHS head coach Mark Blevins said. “He ran the break very nicely, but [point guard] Dion [Fair] was feeding him very well, too.”

It was a game that seemed to be played in slow motion at times, belying the 80 points the Bulldogs ended up putting on the board.

But just when you thought the Irish might be ready to make a run, Bearden (28-2) found another gear to expand the lead. It was Bearden scoring first, last and often, with some brilliant passing, shooting and defense, making Catholic work for every point and every rebound on every possession.

The Bulldogs, No. 2 seed and 4-AAA league co-champs, play the West/Maryville winner Wednesday night, Feb. 23 (after deadline) for the district crown.

Bearden jumped to the early lead, 15-10 after one quarter. It was 33-28 late in the first half when the Bulldogs ran off a 7-2 run, led by five from Drew Standifer, including a big bucket just before the halftime buzzer.

Standifer, junior post and a man on the backboards, made eight of 10 free throws and finished with 12 points.

Standifer and Greene kept the heat on until the lead reached 13 at 49-36 at the 4:03 mark of the third quarter.

It was “pretty tough” inside, Standifer said. “I had to box out the big guys, go up and get the rebound, put it back up, and get the fouls called. That helped out shooting free throws. I've been shooting more free throws in practice.”

Greene had nine in a row to extend a 56-40 lead to 65-40 early in the fourth.

Rico White added 10 and Will Winton nine for Bearden.

Lucas Branch had 13 for the No. 3 seeded Fighting Irish, while Matt Cox added 10.


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