Harriman stumbles in season opener

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By Goose Lindsay


The 2013-14 basketball season got off to a rough start Tuesday evening for the Harriman Blue Devils and Lady Devils as Monterey invaded Richard Pickell Gymnasium and took home a pair of wins in TSSAA Hall of Fame games.

Harriman’s girls took the floor first and dropped a 39-35 decision.

The boys game was played at a faster tempo, but that didn’t help the home team as Monterey completed the sweep with a 64-56 victory.

Harriman will look to rebound tonight (Friday) at Sweetwater in another set of Hall of Fame games.

Girls Game

Points were hard to come by Tuesday as Harriman and Monterey combined for just 13 points in the opening period with the Lady Devils holding a 7-6 lead after eight minutes of play.

The scoring pace picked up a tad in the second period as Monterey outscored Harriman 11-6 in the frame to take a 17-13 lead at halftime.

Monterey’s Sierra Hill led all scorers in the first half with seven points while Marilyn Franklin’s four points paced the Lady Devils.

The Lady Wildcats nearly blew things open in the third period as six Monterey players scored in giving the visitors a 31-19 lead entering the final period of play.

Harriman, however, didn’t go away quietly. The Lady Devils opened the final period with a 13-2 run to pull within 33-32, but they couldn’t get over the hump as Monterey hit enough free throws down the stretch to hold on for the 39-35 victory.

Abby Higgins led Harriman on the night with nine points and three steals while Haley Goldston and Jada Johnson chipped in seven each.

Monterey’s Hill led all scorers with 12 points.

Harriman (35) Higgins 9, Goldston 7, LaRue 3, Boyd 1, Franklin 6, Goins 2, Johnson 7.

Boys Game

For years Harriman fans have been accustomed to watching left-handed guard Xavier Howard barrel his way down the lane and torch opposing defenses.

Howard is now at Roane State and Tuesday night it was a left-handed guard from Monterey that stole the show as junior Jared Phillips rocketed his way past the Blue Devils on his way to 29 points, six rebounds and six assists in leading the Wildcats to a 64-56 victory over the Blue Devils.

Phillips got off to a quick start as he scored 10 points in the first quarter to lead the Wildcats to a 17-13 lead after eight minutes of play.

Another left-hander, Harriman freshman John Johnson scored five points to lead the Blue Devils in the opening frame.

Harriman held Phillips to six points in the second period, but Monterey still added to their lead as Cody Dove and Brett Hastings combined for eight points as the Wildcats took a 31-24 lead into the locker room at halftime.

Jacob Gresham and Chase Randolph scored six points each for Harriman in the first half while Johnson and Alex Wampler chipped in five.

Harriman had the momentum early in the third period, cutting the lead to 37-33 at one point, but the Wildcats ended the period on a 13-3 run to take a 50-36 lead into the final period of play.

Monterey scored first in the fourth quarter to make the score 52-36, but Gresham suddenly caught fire for the Blue Devils as he buried two three-pointers and scored 10 total points in pulling Harriman within 55-48.

Gresham stayed hot down the stretch, scoring seven more points, but Phillips would hit eight free throws in the final period as Monterey picked up the 64-56 victory.

Besides Phillips, Dove (15 points, 4 steals) and Hastings (14 points, 15 rebounds) scored in double figures for the Wildcats.

Gresham (25 points, 6 rebounds) led the way for Harriman. Wampler (11 points), Randolph (8 points, 5 rebounds) and Johnson (7 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists) also put up solid numbers for the Blue Devils.

Harriman (56) Upton 3, Gresham 25, Nelson 2, Randolph 8, Johnson 7, Wampler 11.