Russellville varsity basketball teams find success on court versus county teams
The Russellville Golden Tigers hosted the Red Bay Tigers Dec. 3, and RHS got the win by a 72-69 score.
The two teams battled until the final shot, with both squads playing with intensity throughout the contest.
Red Bay jumped out to a 20-11 first quarter lead with the help of hot shooting and had a 33-24 advantage at the half. Russellville came out of the locker room determined in the third quarter and outdid RBHS by a 26-14 total in the period to grab a three-point lead going into the final quarter.
In the fourth, both teams scored equally down the stretch, with the Golden Tigers making just enough free throws to get the win and improve their record to 3-2 on the season.
Seven RHS players scored in the game, with Eli Gipson leading the way with 18 points. He was followed in double figures by Amir Williams with 15, Malachi Duncan with 13 and Nathan Brockway with 10. Ashton Boyd added seven, Boots McCulloch scored six, and Conner Warhurst had three points.
“I have a lot of respect for John, and we’ve become friends over the years, and I think it’s a great game,” said Russellville head coach Patrick Odom about hosting Red Bay. “Obviously, they traveled well, and it was a fun gym to play in, and that’s what it’s all about.
“We kind of missed that last year, so it’s fun to have that back.”
Earlier in the week, Nov. 30, Russellville went to Florence and fell to the Falcons by a 97-58 score. FHS outscored the Golden Tigers 28-6 in the first quarter and held a 56-29 advantage at the half. Russellville improved the point total in the third by outscoring Florence 17-14 in the period.
The Russellville girls improved their record to 4-3 on the season by winning three of their past four games. All of the RHS wins over that span came against teams from Franklin County, two versus Belgreen and one versus Red Bay.
Nov, 24 RHS went to Belgreen and defeated the Bulldogs by a 54-28 score. Jenna Whitfield led the Golden Tigers with 18 points, and Avery Watts also scored in double figures with 10. Anna Beth Oliver and Jacey Moore had eight apiece, and Ella Copeland scored six, while Jayna Poss and Ashlyn James scored two each.
Florence defeated RHS by a 44-33 score Nov, 30. The Lady Tigers had a 20-15 lead at the half but couldn’t hold on for the win.
Russellville finished the season sweep of Belgreen with a home win Dec. 2 by a 54-22 total. RHS led 23-12 at the half and got scoring by nine players in the victory.
Russellville dominated Red Bay Dec, 3 for a 49-8 win. RBHS managed two field goals in the contest, with the first coming with just over five minutes remaining in the third quarter. The Lady Golden Tigers led 25-3 at the half and 40-7 after three quarters.
Whitfield led RHS with 13 points.
“It was a great win,” said Russellville head coach Jermaine Groce. “The girls came out and played with a lot of energy and defensive intensity.
“We’ve talked about playing fast, hard and aggressive. Our girls love when we get in our press and speed people up because it helps us get out in transition,” Groce added. “I think tonight we played one of the most complete defensive games since I’ve been the head coach here.”