Boone wins Alpha Classic, falls to Science Hill
By Christopher ShieldsThe boys’ basketball team at Daniel Boone High School couldn’t have imagined a better way to end December.
The basketball Blazers captured the Alpha Classic tournament at UVA Wise on Dec. 29 against Estill County (Ky.) 61-40 to conclude the three-day event.
In Gray, the hosting Lady Blazers finished third at the Johnson City Honda Invitational.
The momentum gained by strong tournament finishes didn’t last long for the teams, as Boone returned to conference play with losses against Science Hill.
Strong finish for Lady Blazers at Invitational
The Lady Blazers concluded holiday tournament action on Dec. 29 by finishing the Johnson City Honda Invitational in the third place game against Seymour.
The Lady Blazers went 3-1 during the four-day event.
In the third-place contest, Jenny Snyder’s 18 points made the difference in the Lady Blazers 54-48 victory over Seymour.
The Lady Blazers used a big second quarter to erase a four-point deficit after the first 8 minutes and went into the half up by six points.
The game remained back-and-forth in the second half, with Boone finally taking the lead for good late in the fourth quarter. Katelyn Cox scored 11 points in the win.
The Lady Blazers reopened conference play for the first time in 2013 in Johnson City against the Lady Hilltoppers of Science Hill on Jan 4.
Boone fell behind 22-6 after the first 8 minutes and Science Hill pushed the advantage to 40-10 by the half.
The Hilltoppers pressure defense was more than the Lady Blazers could handle, as they fell 68-25.
Courtney Vasquez led the Lady Blazers with six points on two three-pointers.
The loss dropped Boone to 9-8 on the season and a 1-4 conference mark.
Gaitor leads Boone
in Alpha Classic
The Alpha Classic on the campus of UVA-Wise allowed the Blazers to see competition outside of the state of Tennessee over the course of the tournament.
Boone opened the Classic with a matchup against Somerset of Pennsylvania on Dec. 27.
Despite trailing most of the first three quarters, the Blazers rallied in the fourth for a 70-67 victory.
Jacob Littleton and Ryan Gaitor led the Blazers in their strong finish, scoring 21 and 15 respectively.
Boone followed up their first win a day later by defeating Letcher Central of Kentucky 82-71.
Jordan Stout guided the Blazers with 24 points. Dillon Reppart scored 17, Littleton and Gaitor added 16 and 13, respectively.
The win over Letcher set the Blazers up for a championship contest against Estill County.
Boone utilized a stout defensive performance to hold Estill County to less than 20 points after the first two quarters and Gaitor carried the Blazer offense with 19 points as Boone came out on top 61-40.
For his performance, Gaitor was named tournament MVP. Reppart and Littleton were named to the All-Tournament team.
The Blazers rang in the new year with matchups against Happy Valley and Science Hill.
The Blazers defeated Happy Valley 60-44 on Jan. 2 before losing to Science Hill 80-62 on Jan. 4.
The Hilltoppers used a huge first half to build a 40-24 lead at halftime and held off a Boone comeback in the final two quarters to secure the conference win.
Littleton and Gaitor were once again Boone’s primary contributors scoring 23 and 21 points respectively.
Next up the Blazers and Lady Blazers will travel to Jonesborough for a Jan. 8 meeting against county rival David Crockett High School.