Mavs soar, Lady Mavs stumble

Lady Mav Shae Berry works inside against two Halls High School defenders last week. (photo:Conner McCarty )
December and January are important months of the high school basketball season. During this time, teams attempt to establish an identity and a rhythm, while battling a rigorous schedule full of district games and holiday tournaments.

The Anderson County Mavericks and Lady Mavericks basketball teams are both in the beginning stages of that process, and already proving that this time can easily increase or hinder a team’s momentum.

Last week Anderson County hosted Knoxville Halls in District 3AAA play.

The Lady Mavericks (6-2, 0-2) were undefeated heading into the contest, but suffered a heartbreaking 52-51 defeat. The boys ballers of Anderson County, who started the season off shaky, took care of the visiting Red Devils easily — 65-38.

Anderson County then hosted Campbell County later last week, on Friday, and the end results were the same. The Lady Mavs dropped their second straight game, 68-50, to the Lady Cougars. However, the Mavs (6-3, 3-1) defeated Campbell County 60-48. As the Mavs increase their win streak to three games in a row, the Lady Mavs look to bounce back from a rough week.

Against Halls, the Lady Mavericks were led by Freshman point guard Shae Berry, who led all Anderson County scorers with 19 points.

The Lady Mavs’ inside-out game is created through the senior duo Brooklin McCoy and Maci Houser, who each had 11 points.

Anderson County led after the first half of play, but the Lady Red Devils would take the lead on a big third quarter, where they outscored the Lady Mavs 18-7. Anderson County battled the deficit, and cut the Halls’ lead to one point.

A shooting foul against Halls was called as the buzzer sounded to end regulation, and Anderson County had an opportunity to win the game on two walk-off free throws — both were missed.

The tough early-December defeat seemed to impact Anderson County later in the week.

The Lady Mavs struggled shooting from the floor against the AAA Region 2 leading, undefeated Lady Cougars.

Even with the loss, the Lady Mavs still sit in the second spot in the district standings.

The Anderson County boys had two solid District 3AAA performances last week. Against Halls, the Mavs opened up a 35-24 lead by halftime and never looked back.

The Mavs’ 12-point win over the winless Cougars puts Anderson County in a good position in the district, and it is easy to see that the Mavs are starting to mesh heading into the Christmas break.

Anderson County had another big district matchup against Powell on Tuesday, but the results were unavailable by press time. Up next for Anderson County is a challenging contest, as they travel to Oak Ridge this Friday. This will likely be the best opponent the boys have seen this 2018-2019 season. On the girls side, the Lady Mavs look at a winnable road game.

Tip-off for the Lady Mavs’ contest is scheduled for 6 p.m., and the boys matchup will follow.