Jellico High School’s varsity boys battled back from an early deficit last week (Nov. 24) to defeat District 4-A rival Oakdale, 80-60, for their first win on the basketball court this season,
Senior guard Jeremiah Thompson paced the Blue Devils (1-0 district, 1-2 overall) with 15 points, all from 3-point range. Senior forwards Thomas Ridenour and Jesse Chambers chipped in 11 and 10 points, respectively, for Jellico.
Tee Steinmetz led all scorers with 20 points, including four 3-pointers, for the Eagles (0-1 overall). He scored 12 points and hit a pair of treys during a fourth-quarter blitz.
“It’s good to get a win, especially a district win,” said Blue Devils coach Mike Reynolds.
“We struggled in the first half, but in the second half we boosted our intensity level and got after them a little bit.”
After falling behind 17-9 near the end of the first quarter, Jellico pulled to within two, 17-15, when Thompson hit back-to-back 3-pointers from the right corner.
Thompson bombed in another trey to open the second quarter for an 18-17 advantage. Oakdale regained the lead briefly, but the Blue Devils put together a 10-0 run to climb back on top.
Gabe Mitchell swished a 3-pointer from the top of the key at the first-half buzzer to give Jellico a double-digit advantage, 39-29.
D.J. Currier had a big first half for the Eagles with nine points, including a slam dunk, but the Blue Devils clamped down on defense and held him to three in the second half.
Jellico was up 23 points, 59-36, by the end of the third quarter.
Also scoring for Jellico was Brent Ayers with eight points, Dustin Smiddy and Mitchell with seven each, Michael Smith and Jerry Walker six each, Lee England five and Darius Marlow four.
Rounding out the scoring for Oakdale was Trenton Daugherty and Ryan Young with eight points each, Aaron Kilby with seven and Josh Kilby five.
The Lady Eagles ran away with the girl’s game, 63-30, as Nicole Thompson scored a game-high 24 points.
Lindsey Kilby added 12 points for Oakdale (1-0 overall), followed by Marissa Redmon and Amber Snow with eight each, Haley Colston and Audrey Rogers four each, and Natalie McGill three
Rachel Ayers led the Lady Blue Devils (0-1 district, 0-2 overall) with six points, followed by Amber Barton, Kayla Bolton, Hannah Lambdin and Destiny Creekmore with four each; Noel Tiller, Brooke Walden and Ashley Gulley three each.