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franklin county times

Belgreen teams get winning records started

Noelle Willingham sparks Lady Bulldogs

Noelle Willingham sparked the Belgreen Lady Bulldogs to a 2-0 start this past week with 20-point performances in both games.

Willingham scored 22 points in a 55-53 season opening overtime win over Covenant Christian. She followed with a 26point performance at Sheffield in an easy 66-40 win.

Covenant Christian opened up a 13-11 first quarter lead and extended the lead to 22-17 at halftime. Both teams found their scoring groove in the third quarter, with the Eagles outscoring the Bulldogs 20-17 to extend their lead to 42-34. Belgreen roared back in the fourth quarter, outscoring Covenant 14-6 to tie the game and send it to overtime.

As time expired in overtime, freshman Dacota Green was fouled. Green calmly stepped to the freethrow line and sank the gamewinning shots.

Green scored 14 points for the Bulldogs. She was followed by B.B. Scott with six points, Alayne Tate with five points, Isabella Tate with four points and Makenna Fisher with four points.

Belgreen wasted no time trying to put the game away against Sheffield. The Bulldog girls jumped out to a 22-8 first quarter lead and led 36-23 at halftime.

Belgreen extended that lead to 55-35 in the third quarter, cruising to the easy win.

Scott and Green followed Willingham’s 26point outburst with 11 points and 10 points, respectively. Alayna Tate added eight points, followed by Carson Hovater with five points, Fisher with four points and Jacqueline Alban with two points.

Belgreen boys make early statements

Fresh off a Class 1A state finals run, the Belgreen Bulldogs picked up where they left off. The 2021 Class 1A boys basketball runnerup faced off against two top area basketball teams this past week in Covenant Christian and Sheffield. In both games, the Bulldogs had to come from behind in the fourth quarter to secure wins.

Just like last year, down the stretch, the ball and the game found their way into the hands of Will Bonner.

Bonner scored 25 points against Covenant, including 17 points in the second half.  Against Sheffield, Bonner dropped 28 points, including 16 in the fourth quarter alone.

Covenant Christian led much of the game against the Bulldogs. The Eagles jumped out to a 16-6 first quarter lead and led 20-15 at halftime. Belgreen trimmed Covenant’s lead to 28-25 by the end of the third quarter, and the Bulldogs had their biggest output in the fourth quarter, scoring 14 points and holding the Eagles to 10 points to claim the lead and the win.

Bonner led the game with 28 points, followed by Collin Bonner with eight points. Canaan Stough and Adrian Reeves added three points each.

In the Sheffield game, Belgreen jumped out to a 13-7 first quarter lead. The Bulldogs got five of their seven points from Austin James.

In the second quarter, Belgreen couldn’t find the basket. Sheffield shut Belgreen out in the second quarter 22-0 to take a 29-13 halftime lead.

Belgreen rebounded in the third quarter, outscoring Sheffield 14-4 to trim Sheffield’s lead to 33-27.

In the fourth quarter, Will Bonner took over. Bonner scored 16 points in the fourth quarter to spark the rally.  Bonner was 10 for 11 from the free throw line.

Collin Bonner scored 13 points in the game, all in the second half. Stough added two points.