What an amazing Region 4-AAA high school basketball tournament.
On the first night, all four of our 7-AAA girls teams won. Blackman destroyed Franklin County at the Furnace, Oakland beat a good Lincoln County team at Oakland, Smyrna beat Shelbyville for the third time, this time on the road, and Riverdale, in perhaps a tiny upset, won by 18 (18!) at Columbia. All three of the TSSAA Miss Basketball nominees were in the tournament.
On the second night, the 7-AAA boys all won as Siegel pounded Lawrence County, La Vergne easily whipped Franklin County, Blackman beat Coffee County badly and underdog (maybe) Smyrna beat Columbia on the road.
As a result of all this, the entire tournament, originally set for Shelbyville, returned to Siegel for the rest of the games. I’m sure something similar has happened before, but I don’t remember when. First, one district hardly ever sweeps another and certainly not all eight games. Anyway, our teams got to play each other again.
In the girls semifinals Oakland and Smyrna slugged it out. The game was tied 19–19, but the Lady Pats pulled it out and won by 11. The difference was the fourth quarter, which Oakland won 13–5. Trust me, it wasn’t easy. Smyrna ended a fine season at 22–12.
In the other semifinal, Blackman, the state’s No. 1 team, beat Riverdale. After leading by two at the half, the Blaze won the second half by 14. More than 2,000 fans watched and many couldn’t get in the sold-out gym. Riverdale ended its season at 25–7, ending an amazing 128-12 run over the last four years!
In boys semifinal action, Siegel struggled some with a constantly improving Smyrna team that finished 14 -17. Siegel ran their terrific record to 29–1.
In the second semi -final game, Blackman played La Vergne for the sixth time this year and the Blaze ran their record to 24-5 with the win. La Vergne’s season ended at a sparkling 21–10.
In the girls championship game, Oakland slowed and controlled the tempo, and trailed by only two points after three quarters before eventually falling 41–33 to powerful Blackman. Oakland played at Bradley County and Blackman hosted Cumberland County in the sectional on Saturday night.
In the boys championship, Blackman and Siegel battled it out again, with the Stars finally winning. Blackman now goes to Crossville to play Stone Memorial on Monday night, while Siegel Nation will host Walker Valley on the same night. The winners advance to Murphy Center March 12.
In the girls championship game Oakland slowed and controlled the tempo, and trailed by only two points after three quarters before eventually falling 41–33 to powerful Blackman. Oakland will go to Bradley County and Blackman will host Cumberland County in the sectional.
In the boys championship Blackman and Siegel battled it out again with the Stars finally winning. Blackman now goes to Crossville to play Stone Memorial on Monday night and Siegel Nation will host Walker Valley on the same night. The winners advance to Murphy Center March 12th.