The Cleveland Lady Raiders squeaked by the Baylor Red Raiders 38-36 on Tuesday on the opening day of the 2103 MurMaid Mattress Cleveland Classic .The Hamilton Heights boys defeated McMinn County in the nightcap.
The girls game began with Baylor in control as the half was marked by little offensive output and grinding defense. Cleveland and Baylor scored just 5 and 6 points respectively in the 2nd quarter.
The second half began with the Red Raiders up 16-12, as the Blue Raiders picked up the pace on defense and with Nora Berry and Hallea McClendon both blocking shots in the 3rd quarter. Berry added two 3-pointers that same quarter to help Cleveland outscore Baylor 10-9 in the 3rd. Baylor got into foul trouble in the fourth and Cleveland hit 8-11 free throws as both teams play hard-nosed defense.
Cleveland’s free throw shooting turned out to be the difference, accounting for half of the team's points in the final quarter. Cleveland held on to win the close contest. Baylor’s Kalee Clemons led all scorers with 15, while Nora Berry led Cleveland with 13 points, that included three from behind the arc.
Cleveland head coach Mindy Kiser spoke after the game, “We were able to hang in there and hit some really big shots down the stretch, We only had four people score tonight but when they score they were realty at the right times. It was just a really good win for our program.”
In the last game of the night the Hamilton Heights Hawks rolled past a much-smaller McMinn County. The Hawks jumped out to lead the game quickly by controlling the post early. While McMinn played tough and scrappy until the end, the Cherokees were just outmatched as the Hamilton big men dominated frontcourt all night. Hamilton Heights’ Joan Duran led all scorers with 20, while Corey Edgemen led McMinn with 15.
McMinn’s head coach said, “I’m very proud of my guys, I though we scrapped and we never quit, we just needed to make a few more plays against those big guys and maybe we could’ve mad it a real game at the end. But really, I don’t know if I’ve played against a more talented bunch than that team right there.”
BOYS BOX SCORES:
Hamilton Heights 16 14 14 18 -- 62
McMinn County 10 8 20 17 -- 55
Hamilton Heights (62) – Joan Duran 20, Silas Adheke 15, Vilius Nauseda 13, Olanrewaju Olatunji 10, Hillary Huyler 2, Darryle Pitts 2
McMinn County (55) – Corey Edgemen 15, Rob Saxton 9, Brian Armstrong 8, Peyton Lawson 8, Jaylen Martin 6, Luke Marshall 6, Tristen Spradling 3
3-Point Goals: Hamilton Heights 3, McMinn County 7
GIRLS BOX SCORES:
Cleveland 7 5 10 16 -- 38
Baylor 10 6 9 11 -- 36
Cleveland (38) -- Nora Berry 13, Bre Ware 10, Jenna Scoggins 8, Jamiyah person 4, Hallea McClendon 2
Baylor (36) -- Kalee Clemons 15, Abby Hubert 8, J. McMahan 4, S. Looper 3, Krosby Huckabay 2, Jasmine Simpkins 2, Selena Popp 2
3-Point Goals: Cleveland 7 (Berry 3, Ware 2, Scoggins 2); Baylor 1 (K. Clemons)
Hamilton Heights 8 8 13 6 -- 35
McMinn County 8 6 11 7 -- 32
Hamilton Heights (35) -- Kamile Kasciunaite 11, Nina Vukosavljevio 9, Victoria Monyei 6, Augusta Kievisaite 4, Gerda Paulauskaite 3, Amber Hunt 2
McMinn County (32) -- Madison Dispensa 10, Keke Smith 6, Rachel Simbeck 4, Rachel Burke 4, Ebony Kelley 4, Taloria Robinson 4
3-Point Goals: Hamilton Heights 0, McMinn County 0