Bobcats pick up split in season opener

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Guard play leads Lady 'Cats to 60-47 victory

By Goose Lindsay, Sports Editor

Opening night opened with mixed reviews in Oliver Springs as the Bobcats and Lady ‘Cats split a pair of TSSAA Hall of Fame games with Sale Creek.

The Lady ‘Cats opened the evening with a 60-47 victory over the Lady Panthers. Sixty was also the magic number in the final game of the evening, as Sale Creek knocked off the Bobcats, 60-55.

Oliver Springs hits the floor again Tuesday night when they travel to Anderson County.

Girls Game

Oliver Springs had a tussle on their hands for one half of play, but the second half belonged to the Lady ‘Cats as Michelle Christopher’s squad pulled away for a 13-point victory.

Solid guard play was the key to Oliver Springs’ success as Kellie Ball (13 points, 5 rebounds, 5 steals) along with twin sisters Rachel (15 points, 12 rebounds, 6 assists, 4 steals) and Emily Griffith (22 points, 5 steals, 4 assists) combined for 50 of Oliver Springs’ 60 points on the evening.

Emily Griffith scored seven points in the first period as Oliver Springs held a 14-9 lead after eight minutes of play.

Sale Creek, however, outscored the Lady ‘Cats 15-11 in the second period to pull with 25-24 at halftime.

The third period would see the Lady ‘Cats begin to take control. Behind five points from Emily Griffith, Oliver Springs outscored Sale Creek 15-7 in the frame to make the score 40-31.

Griffith scored 10 more points in the final period as Oliver Springs pulled away for the 60-47 victory.

Erin Hill led Sale Creek on the night with 17 points.

Oliver Springs (60) E. Griffith 22, Ball 13, Snellings 1, R. Griffith 15, Martin 4, Giles 5.

Boys Game

Sometimes stats don’t tell the whole story as on a night where the Oliver Springs Bobcats forced 31 turnovers and attempted 30 more shots than their opponents, the Sale Creek Panthers still managed to sneak out of Terry Hacker Gymnasium with a 60-55 victory.

The Bobcats put up 66 shots on the night, but made only 19 (28.8 percent on the night) while Sale Creek hit 16 of 36 (44.4 percent) of their shots. Where the Panthers made up the difference, however, was at the charity stripe as Sale Creek made 24 of their 40 free throw attempts compared to Oliver Springs making just 13 of 26.

Sale Creek led for much of the evening thanks to grabbing a 22-13 lead after one period of play. 

Chase Janous scored seven points in the period for Sale Creek while John Simms scored six points for the Bobcats.

Oliver Springs settled down and pulled to within three points, 31-28, at halftime. 

Oliver Springs’ Kane Simpson led all scorers in the second period with six points.

The rest of the game remained tight, but Oliver Springs could never make a big enough run to knock off the Panthers. Sale Creek outscored Oliver Springs 13-12 in the third period and 16-15 in the final period to pick up the 60-55 victory.

Simpson led Oliver Springs on the night with 22 points, seven rebounds and four assists. Simms was next in line with 13 points and five steals. Dakota Thompson and Matt Henley scored eight points each with Henley pulling down a team-high eight rebounds.

Logan Barton led the way for Sale Creek with 15 points and four assists. Janous (11 points, 7 rebounds, 5 blocks) and Preston Turner (10 points, 10 rebounds) also scored in double figures for the Panthers. 

 Oliver Springs (55) Simpson 22, Simms 13, Noe 1, Thompson 8, Henley 8, Murray 3.