County Line Beats Danville For Tournament Title
By Kevin Taylor Times Record
LAVACA — Evan Franklin and Trent Gattis combined for 45 points Wednesday to power County Line to a 73-57 win against Danville in the boys’ championship game of the Lavaca Golden Arrows Classic.
Gattis’ 3-pointers helped County Line keep a big lead against Danville’s Jay Trusty, who scored 23.
"Our guards played well," County Line coach Joe Brunson said. "We were concerned coming in against Danville, the way their guards like to play. They like to press and trap and we were concerned about the turnovers. I thought we did a pretty solid job."
Both teams came off big wins on Tuesday and shot the ball well for the most part. The Indians broke up a tight game early by building a 19-7 lead late in the first quarter.
Even after Danville (6-1) chipped away, Gattis hit a 3-pointer to stretch the lead to 34-19 with 45.2 seconds left in the first half.
County Line (12-2) led by just 12 at halftime but outscored the Little Johns 13-8 to open the second half, capped by another Gattis 3 with 2:48 to play in the third quarter.
Trusty tried to keep Danville close, but County Line maintained a large enough lead. Along with Franklin and Gattis, Michal Kuykendall scored 14 points and Cory Wilhelm contributed eight for the winners.
"If we have a good postseason, we’ll play 35 or 38 games this season," Brunson said. "We’re not even at the midway point yet, so we still have a lot of room for improvement.
"But the point we’re at right now, I feel pleased with the boys so far."
Mulberry 34, Mountainburg 31
GIRLS — Second-year Mulberry coach Adam Carlton doesn’t mind when junior Tiffany Edwards launches 3-pointers.
He knows eventually they’ll start to fall and that’s exactly what happened in the girls championship of the Lavaca Golden Arrows Classic.
Edwards hit four second-half 3-pointers and the Lady Yellowjackets’ tenacious defense forced three Mountainburg turnovers in the final minute of play to win.
"She has the green light to shoot whenever she wants to," Carlton said. "She can shoot it from three or four feet from behind the line, and a lot of times she’ll make it. I know that if she keeps shooting, eventually she’s going to make some."
Poor shooting contributed to a low first-half score, with Mulberry leading just 12-11 at the break. Mountainburg was 3-of-21 from the floor in the first 16 minutes and Mountainburg’s 5-of-22 effort wasn’t much better.
"Neither of us lit it up in the first half by any stretch of the imagination," Carlton said. "But we kept playing. I have a good group of kids over there."
Mountainburg made just three first-half field goals and trailed through much of the game before finding some late magic. The Lady Dragons made their final three field goals Wednesday and might have won had it not been for the turnovers.
Lauren Becker’s 3-pointer gave Mountainburg a 31-30 lead with 1:37 left to play. The Lady Dragons were attempting to run out the clock when Mulberry forced a turnover with over a minute remaining.
Edwards’ final 3 of the night put the Lady Jackets ahead for good at 33-31. Then Mountainburg turned the ball over again with 52.5 seconds left to play.
Because Mountainburg had been whistled for just two fouls, the Lady Dragons were forced to repeatedly foul in the final 35 seconds in effort to put Mulberry on the line. That didn’t happen until there were 15.5 seconds left in the game.
Montainburg will get a chance to avenge Wednesday’s loss later this week at Alma’s Crawford County Classic.
"We’re going to see them here in a couple of days over in Alma," Carlton said. "They’re well-coached and play hard and the (Tara) Webb girl signed with (Arkansas) Tech. It’s good for our kids to play good teams."
Webb led Mountainburg with a game-high 16 points and 11 rebounds.
Along with Edwards, junior Lexi Voorhees had eight points and six rebounds.
Golden Arrows Classic at Lavaca
COUNTY LINE 73, DANVILLE 57
County Line 10 24 22 17 — 73
Danville 10 12 15 20 — 57
County Line (12-2): Franklin 23, Gattis 22, Kuykendall 14, Wilhelm 8, Goodson 3, Morris 3.
Danville (6-1): Trusty 23, Phouthavong 12, Frost 9, Rameriz 6, Cathey 4, Wesley 3.
MULBERRY 34, MOUTAINBURG 31
Mountainburg 7 4 8 12 — 31
Mulberry 8 4 11 11 — 34
Mountainburg (7-2): Webb 16, Ross 8, Moore 4, Peters 2, Hobson 1.
Mulberry (11-2): Edwards 12, Voorhees 8, Naegle 6, Archer 5, Treat 2, Cagle 1.