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Overmatched Blazers, Lady Blazers fall big to Science Hill

It has been bad news for just about every team playing the Hilltoppers (17-1, 5-0) and even worse news for teams facing the undefeated Lady Hilltoppers (17-0, 5-0) of Science Hill High School this season.
Both Science Hill squads sit atop the Big 8 Conference leaderboard after dominating conference competitors this season.
For the Blazers (5-12, 1-4) and Lady Blazers (6-7, 2-3) of Daniel Boone High School, the 2012 conference schedule began in Gray on Jan. 6 against the two talented Johnson City teams.
While the schools do share the same county, neighborly goodwill is put aside when these two meet.
The visiting Lady Hilltoppers used a huge second quarter to dash the Lady Blazers’ chance at a win in a 63-44 final and the boys completed the sweep on the night turning in a dominating 84-50 win over the Blazers.
Little doubt remains that the Science Hill Lady Hilltoppers are the top team in the conference, but the Lady Blazers of Daniel Boone, aside from three minutes, showed up to play tight, highly contested and competitive basketball.
Science Hill opened the first quarter with three straight baskets to jump to an early lead.
Boone would respond, shooting themselves back in the game to draw within one toward the end of the opening eight minutes.
The first ended with the Lady Blazers very much in the thick of things trailing by just four points, 14-10.
Boone continued their strong play for almost the entire second stanza, locking down the Hilltopper offense and matching their baskets just enough to keep the game close.
With Science Hill controlling a seven-point lead with just over three minutes to play, the Lady Blazer defense broke down. Turnovers piled up and the once seven-point deficit turned into a 20-point blowout by the half.
Boone limped into the half trailing the Lady Hilltoppers 40-20 at the break.
The defense returned for the Blazers in the second half as Boone outscored the Lady Hilltoppers in the final two quarters 24-23, but the final minutes of the first half proved the decider as Boone could never overcome the 20 point deficit, losing by 19 points.
Boone’s Jordan Bacon led all scorers with 15 points, 12 of which came on four 3-pointers. The senior wing had the hot hand behind the arc, shooting a respectable 40 percent. Junior post Kathleen Casey was the only other Blazer to reach double-figures, finishing with 10 points.
After watching the Lady Blazers falter, the boys of Boone took to the court against the Big 8’s best in hopes of a better end result.
But turnovers and Science Hill’s strong offensive attack would ultimately put the boys of Boone on the losing side of the match up.
The Trailblazers trailed by nine after the first eight minutes, but fought back hard in the second to pull within a point with three minutes to play in the half.
But Boone couldn’t close out the final three minutes as Science Hill exploded with a 15-3 run to take a 37-24 advantage to the half.
As the third quarter opened, the Blazer turnovers continually increased, helping Science Hill score a staggering 34 points in the quarter. Boone finished the contest with 20 turnovers.
During the third quarter, the Hilltoppers increased their lead to 28 points by the end of eight minutes in the second half.
The lightning-paced game slowed in the fourth quarter as Science Hill added to their advantage with a 13-7 final quarter for a huge win.
Junior Ryan Gaitor led the Blazers on offense with 19 points. Jacob Littleton netted 12.
Both Blazer teams enter a week which features three games including home contests on Tuesday, Jan. 10, against county rival David Crockett.
The Blazers will cap off the week with another conference matchup at Sullivan Central on Friday, Jan. 13.