Castlewood's teams pull off district sweep

George Thwaites • Jan 17, 2007 at 12:30 PM

EWING - Making its longest district road trip of the season with snow and ice in the forecast didn't faze either of Castlewood's basketball teams Tuesday night.

"It's not that bad," Blue Devil boys coach Aaron Williams said. "We came down here once and at McDonald's it was karaoke night."

The only music on this visit was "string music."

The Castlewood girls put four players in double figures in a 72-58 Cumberland District win at Thomas Walker. The boys boasted five double-figure scorers in an 82-47 rout of the Pioneers in the nightcap.

Kayla Gordon led scoring for the Lady Blue Devils (10-4, 3-0), pouring in 22 points.

"We were sitting in class today wondering about the weather, hoping it wouldn't snow us out," said Gordon, who also grabbed six rebounds.

Castlewood girls coach Barry Ruff was less worried about the weather and more concerned about missing point guard Kelsey Addington, who is sidelined until next week with a knee injury. He moved Lorren Evans to the point, put Amelia Chafin in the starting lineup and hoped for the best.

The best is what he got. Evans fired up 19 points and pulled down eight rebounds while Chafin contributed 17 points. Nicole Counts chipped in 12 points and seven boards.

"We scored more points tonight than we've scored all year, so I'm happy," said Ruff, whose pressure defense garnered 20 steals - including five for Evans and four apiece for Counts, Gordon and Shaina Hall, who also had eight rebounds.

The Lady Blue Devils led 21-13 after the first quarter and took a 39-29 advantage to intermission.

The Lady Pioneers (5-8, 2-2) did a better job adapting to the press in the second half. Thomas Walker also had more luck getting the ball in the post to Tiffany Gibson, who finished with 26 points.

"Our girls gave their all, especially in the second half," said Thomas Walker coach Janet Nelson, who also got 10 points from Jennifer Burke.

"We call Tiffany ‘Big Red.' If we get the ball in there, she puts it in the hole for us. She did her job tonight."

The Thomas Walker boys hit the floor with a lot of fire. The Pioneers took the 6-5 lead on a Robbie Giles stickback at 5:18 in the first quarter and got 3s from Dude Overton and Justin Helton to take a 14-13 lead into the second stanza.

The Blue Devils (13-1, 3-0), ranked No. 1 in Group A, bombed the home team with six 3-pointers in the second quarter, a development that ultimately helped loosen up things inside.

Post Brad McReynolds - who had only three first-quarter points, all free throws - finished with 16 points and nine rebounds. Travis Carter hit three 3-pointers on his way to 14 points, Chris Smith hit two treys en route to 12 and Patrick Fisher nailed two trifectas as part of his 10-point total.

"It's good to have balanced scoring, not just in terms of players, but balance in terms of where we scored from," Williams said. "We were scoring from different areas, inside and outside. I thought we moved the ball well."

Drew Justice, who had seven rebounds to go with his 11 points, also nailed a 3. The Blue Devils doled out 22 collective assists, led by Fisher's seven and Smith's six.

"They're very difficult to guard," Pioneers boys coach Chris Sutphin said. "When a team shoots like that, they're hard to defend. That's why they're so good. You've got to defend all of them - even the kids off the bench."

Justin Helton scored 15 points to pace the Pioneers (11-4, 2-2).

"I thought my kids played all right in the first quarter. But there are four quarters in a game," Sutphin said.

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