HENDERSONVILLE — Mt. Juliet’s girls won the battle of big on big Monday as the Lady Bears outlasted Hendersonville 48-39.
The Lady Bear trio of Sally McCabe and twins Ronjanae and Raeyana DeGray could be one of the best front lines in the state. Hendersonville also has three six-footers, though one comes off the bench.
In the case of Monday’s makeup game, being out of school for the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday and an early start time may have had something to do with what Mt. Juliet coach Chris Fryer described as ragged play by both teams.
“We didn’t play one of our better games,” Fryer said after his Lady Bears improved to 16-1 for the season and 8-0 in District 9-AAA despite shooting around 40 percent when they normally shoot in excess of 60 percent. “We shot ourselves in the foot by missing some easy shots.
“But that may have been because of their size.”
Mt. Juliet, which remained No. 4 in the latest Associated Press Class AAA poll released earlier Monday, never trailed, building a 19-10 first-quarter lead. The Lady Commandos climbed to within 24-20 by halftime before the Lady Bears widened the margin back go 34-26 going into the fourth.
Hendersonville made a run in the fourth period which Raeyana DeGray, who led the Lady Bears with 19 points, effectively ended with a three-point basket.
McCabe finished with 15 points while Ronjanae DeGray scored seven and Tyia Waller four. Ashley Roby, who turned her ankle early in last Friday’s game against Lebanon, finished with two points and Skye Riggan, battling a deep thigh bruise, dropped in a free throw.
No one scored in double figures for Hendersonville, who also have wing players Joslyn Jarrett and freshman Anastasia Hayes to cause matchup problems.
“We knew it was going to be a tough game,” Fryer said. “I’m proud of our girls for pulling out a win.”
Mt. Juliet will play host to Gallatin at 6:30 p.m. tonight before traveling to Portland on Friday.
“If we have a good week right here, it puts us in the driver’s seat,” Fryer said.
Golden Bears battle from early deficit to beat Hendersonville
HENDERSONVILLE — Mt. Juliet’s boys had to overcome a slow start to gut out a 47-38 win at Hendersonville on Monday.
The Commandos led 15-6 following the first quarter before the Golden Bears battled in front by five late in the second. Hendersonville hit a three-pointer to pull within 23-21 by halftime. Mt. Juliet entered the fourth quarter ahead 33-27.
“They played us good,” Mt. Juliet coach Troy Allen said after his Golden Bears improved to 11-8 for the season and 5-3 in District 9-AAA. “They played us zone the whole way. We haven’t seen much zone all year.
“We missed shots early. We had to fight and hang on. We didn’t play that bad. We played pretty good on defense. These are the games, if you’re a pretty good team, you find a way to win.”
Reagan Johnson’s 14 points paced Mt. Juliet while Daniel Schroder scored 11. John Mark Bell rang up a pair of three-pointers on his way to seven while brother Christian Bell finished with five, Nolan Chowbay four and Austin Brown and James Womack three each.
Philip Johnson scored 11 points and Braden White 10 for Hendersonville, which will play host to Lebanon tonight while Mt. Juliet entertains Gallatin.
MJCA boys go 0-for-East Tennessee
It was a rough weekend on the East Tennessee road for Mt. Juliet Christian’s boys, who lost at King’s Academy in Seymour 50-39 Friday night and at Knoxville Webb 66-47 Saturday afternoon.
Jeremy Weech sank six three-pointers to lead King’s with 27 points while Adam Deatherage dropped in 12 points.
Newman Ward knocked down a pair of threes as he and Zack Jones each scored 11 points for Mt. Juliet Christian. Drew Headrick and Landon Boyd finished with four points apiece and Wyatt Oberg, Justus Willis and Nathan Green three apiece.
Ben Baily bagged five triples for Webb as he scored 17 points while Dean Miniard finished with 15 and Alexander Berube 12.
Jones led Mt. Juliet Christian with 11 points while Oberg knocked down a pair of threes on his way to nine. Willis also hit a couple of triples as he and Alex Graves each scored seven, Ward six, Boyd five and Green two as the Saints slipped to 9-10.
Mt. Juliet Christian will play host to Trousdale County tonight with the girls tipping off at 6 p.m.