By TREY WILLIAMS
Ayden Begley might be momentarily confused about which bench to go to when Daniel Boone’s basketball team visits rival David Crockett on Friday.
Begley, a sophomore shooting guard, transferred from Crockett to Boone between semesters. He scored seven points for the Pioneers in their 69-60 win at Boone on Nov. 30. Friday, he’ll try to earn a personal series sweep while helping Daniel Boone get a split.
Begley scored 11 points and made three 3-pointers in Boone’s victory against Volunteer on Friday. He scored 22 points and made six 3-pointers in Crockett’s win against Volunteer in the Hardee’s Classic in late November.
“Ayden Begley transferred in and is doing a nice job as he gets acclimated to our system,” Daniel Boone coach Chris Brown said. “He hit three big ‘threes’ Friday at Volunteer, and as he continues to get more comfortable, his role will increase. He has the ability to stretch the floor, and you can never have enough guys that can put the ball in the basket.”
Leading scorer Chad Heglar led Boone with 22 points against the Falcons. Heglar made two 3-pointers, as did Jared Adkins (14 points).
Sophomore Cade Norris had 11 points and six rebounds in Boone’s 74-54 loss at Morristown East on Saturday.
In addition to visiting Crockett on Friday, the ‘Blazers (1-3, 6-8) must travel to Gate City to take on high-scoring guards Zac Ervin and Bradley Dean on Saturday.
“We had a good road win Friday night at Volunteer,” Brown said. “Went to Morristown East Saturday and had a tough time with Conner Jordan and company. Big week coming up. … Conference road games are tough and we have to play with a level of toughness both mentally and physically. We will have to maintain our composure and deal with the ebb and flow of the game. … This week will be a big test and one we look forward to as we get into the meat of the conference schedule.”
The David Crockett boys (1-4, 5-13) bounced back from a 72-64 home loss to Science Hill on Jan. 8 with a 76-53 win against Cherokee. Mason Britton made six of the Pioneers’ 11 treys en route to 20 points against the Chiefs. Mack Hensley also had 20 points and John Kollie added 13.
Hensley will have Boone’s attention on Friday. He scored 32 points in Crockett’s win at Boone in November.
Pioneer freshman point guard Dawson Wagner scored 14 points in the Pioneers’ win in Gray, and looked like the best penetrating guard on the court much of the second half.
The Daniel Boone girls (2-2, 14-7) bounced back from a Jan. 8 loss to Dobyns-Bennett with a 66-42 win at Morristown East on Saturday. Junior Jaycie Jenkins and senior Bayleigh Carmichel scored 17 and 13 points, respectively. Kayla Gibson and Madi Runnels each added nine points.
“It was a big win for us on Saturday at Morristown East,” Boone coach Beau Hauldren said. “We knew going in it was going to be a tough game. Coach (Mike) Potts does a great job and I felt like our girls got off to a great start shooting the ball, something we haven’t done well lately. Defensively, it took a quarter to get going, but once we settled in we were able to come up with some stops and gradually pull away.”
Carmichel is leading Boone with 14.7 points per game and she’s shooting 81 percent at the foul line. Jenkins is averaging 14.4 points, 6.6 rebounds, 4.0 steals and 4.0 assists per game.
Boone defeated Crockett 73-38 in Bobby Snyder Gym on Nov. 30. But Hauldren doesn’t anticipate a sweep coming easily against the Pioneers (2-4, 6-11).
“Coach (Tony) Gordon has done a great job with his team this year,” Hauldren said. “They are getting better every time they step onto the court. It is going to be a great challenge for our girls. They are excited to play in a big rivalry game like this one.”
Crockett sophomore Emma Gouge averages 13.1 points and 6.4 rebounds per game. Mackenzie Baldwin is averaging 7.1 points and 7.3 rebounds.
“Emily Trivette has developed beyond a freshman to provide ball-handling and perimeter shooting,” Gordon said. “Halle Scott has emerged as a consistent guard both offensively and defensively, especially after the loss of Karina Palomino to an ACL tear.
Boone dominated the first match up but I think my players are ready to show how much better and tougher they have become.”