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Three-mendous showing

Rebel 3-point barrage keys big district win at Bearden

By Stefan Cooper
Blount Press Row

Knoxville – Bearden clung doggedly to a zone defense Wednesday night, and Maryville shot it to pieces.

Nick Myers slices to the rim for a Rebel basket Wednesday night. Photos by Jolanda Jansma

The Bulldogs withstood a barrage of four straight Rebel 3s to start the second half, but two more from guard John Garrett with four minutes left were simply too much in a 66-63 Maryville win.

T.J. Kimble sails to the basket against Bearden during Wednesday night's win

The Rebels (11-2, 4-0 District 4AAA) hammered repeatedly at a Bearden zone throughout. The Buldogs (14-2, 4-1) rallied each time in a midseason battle for District 4AAA supremacy. Garrett’s last bomb was simply one too many.

“Big win, especially at their place,” Maryville coach Mark Eldridge said.

With Maryville trailing 54-53 with 4:29 left, Garrett struck for a 56-54 lead with a basket from the left corner. One Rebel possession later, the Maryville point guard popped from the left wing.

“I was surprised they stayed in (the zone) as long as they did,” Garrett said.

A highlight, reverse layup from T.J. Kimble off the break, followed by a drive to the basket by Nick Myers with a little over a minute left, opened a 63-56 lead Bearden was unable to close.

Kimble scored twice off the drive in the final minute to ice the game.

Kimble paced the Rebels with a team-best 17 points, putting to full advantage Bearden’s inability to double the speedy Maryville guard. Garrett followed with 16 points on four 3s, with post players Clark McCall (15 points, three treys) and Bryan Landers (12, two 3s) adding plenty of supporting firepower.

Bryan Landers looks to make a move.

Sharing the basketball fueled Maryville’s hot night from the perimeter, Garrett finishing with a team-best six assists. Myers had four, Landers three.

Sam Greene tossed in a game-high 20 points, including a pair of 3s, to pace the Bulldogs, with big man Brady Smith and guard Adrius Wilson adding 13 each. Isaiah Campbell added 11.

It wasn’t all bombs away for the Rebels. McCall opened the game’s scoring with one from the left corner. Garrett followed with another soon after. Bearden answered with speed at the guards, the Bulldogs leading 14-12 after a quarter.

It was 26-25 Rebels at the half, Garrett providing some foreshadowing with a 3 to close the quarter.

“We knew if they went man we’d have the advantage,” Eldridge said. “We didn’t think they’d be able to stay on the perimeter and guard our big guys.”

Landers, twice from the right wing, and McCall, twice from the left, opened the second half with four straight treys, forcing the Bulldogs to play catch up.

Lady Bulldogs 42, Lady Rebels 34
A cold-shooting first quarter saw the Lady Rebels tally only a free throw.

Georgia Miller, team-best 10 points, and Olivia Spears, nine, three treys, sparked the offense to life over the following three quarters, and defense put Maryville (5-7, 3-2) in position to take sole possession of second behind frontrunner Farragut in the district standings.

Kayla Tillie works her way to the rim against Bearden's Erin Walsh.

Paxton Robinette lets it fly.

A strong third quarter from the Lady Rebels defensively sent the teams to the fourth quarter locked in a 25-25 tie, where sophomore Kayla Tillie’s ball-handling, distribution and sticky defense keyed a Maryville surge to start the frame.

After opening a 32-27 lead with four minutes to play, Maryville, mistakenly, continued to push the tempo, Lady Rebel coach Scott West said.

“We took some ill-advised shots,” he said. “We rushed it a few times.”

Bearden took the lead for good, 34-32, on a Kaci Mitchell layup with three minutes left. The Lady Bulldogs (11-5, 3-2) went 6-for-6 from the free-throw line inside the final minute to hold the lead.

Erin Walsh set the tempo for Bearden with a game-best 13 points, with Lexus Norwood adding 11 on the strength of three 3-pointers. Mitchell hit three times for the Lady Bulldogs from 3.

Emerald VanWinkle popped twice from downtown to finish with six for the Lady Rebels, with Tillie finishing with four and Paxton Robinette three.

“They fought,” West said. “They never quit. We just made some mistakes.”














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