Bobcats pounce Tigers for first win

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By Brody Jones

Often, a one-win season can be the equivalent of kissing your sister, but for the Oliver Springs Bobcats, that win against the Sunbright Tigers had to be like kissing Megan Fox as they pulled off their first win of the 2010-2011 basketball season with a 51-40 stunner over the Sunbright Tigers.

The Bobcats started the season with 25 straight losses, but have shown steady improvement over the last month and missed out with close losses against Coalfield, Oakdale and District 4-A champion Jellico in the past three weeks.

Oliver Springs will now try to build momentum Friday night at Oneida before traveling to Wartburg on Thursday for the first round of the District 4-A Tournament.

Sunbright started off the game on an 11-5 run, but the Bobcats whittled down the lead to 15-13 at the end of the first period. The Bobcats then roared to life in the second period with a 15-4 run at one point before Sunbright hit the final three-pointer of the half, making the score 28-22.

Sunbright chopped that lead in half to 35-32 at the end of the third period, but in the final period, the Bobcats used an 11-2 surge of momentum down the stretch to take home their first win of the season on Senior Night.

Both teams had 26 boards, but Oliver Springs had a 9-6 advantage in team steals.

Oliver Springs was led in scoring by Michael Taylor (12 points), Matt Henley (11 points) and Jordan Romero (10 points).

John Simms (7 points, 6 boards) and Cory McBee (6 boards) each played well in the win.

Sunbright was led in defeat by Tyler Langley (20 points) and Austin Webb (8 points, 5 boards).

Blake Shannon (6 boards), Timmy Turner (6 assists, 5 boards) and Matthew Bakker (5 boards) also played well for the Tigers.

The seniors for Oliver Springs playing in their final home game were Michael Taylor, Brady Sweet, and Tassilio “Taz” Hanappi.

Sunbright (40) Langley 20, Webb 8, Bakker 4, Seabolt 4, Turner 2, Shannon 2.

Oliver Springs (51) Taylor 12, Henley 11, Romero 10, Simms 7, Gann 4, Crisp 3, McBee 2, Sweet 2.

Girls Game

The Oliver Springs Lady Bobcats, much like Bachman-Turner Overdrive, were "taking care of business" Tuesday evening against the Sunbright Lady Tigers, rolling to a 49-23 win at the Terry Hacker Gymnasium.

Oliver Springs started off rolling with a 17-5 first period tilt and a 13-5 surge in period number two to take a 30-10 halftime lead.

Sunbright scored the first six points of the third period, but the Lady 'Cats went on a 9-2 run to close out the period with a 39-18 lead.

The Lady 'Cats outscored Sunbright 10-5 in the final period to take home the 49-23 win.

Oliver Springs owned a 41-34 edge on the boards and an 18-13 advantage in team steals.

Katie Harvey (15 points, 6 boards) and Sarah Davis (9 points, 7 boards) led the Lady 'Cats in scoring. Kellie Ball (6 points, 5 steals) and Leigha Carter (6 points) also had key scoring contributions for Oliver Springs.

Maleah Murray (8 boards) and Macy Martin (6 boards) each played well in the win.

Sunbright was led in defeat by Sarah Sexton (11 points, 10 boards), Maggie Widick (6 points, 11 boards) and Hannah McWhorter (6 points).

The evening was the final home game for seniors Katie Harvey, Sarah Davis, Katie Fitch, and Maleah Murray.

Unlike the boys, the Lady ‘Cats have a lot riding on Friday’s game at Oneida. Depending on the outcome of that game at Friday’s game between Oakdale and Coalfield, Oliver Springs can finish anywhere between second and fourth in the final district standings.

However, no matter the finish, Oliver Springs will host a first round District 4-A Tournament game on Tuesday.

Sunbright (23) Sexton 11, Widick 6, McWhorter 6.

Oliver Springs (49) Harvey 15, Davis 9, Ball 6, Carter 6, Christopher 5, Martin 3, Fitch 3, Murray 2.