The Cloudland Lady ‘Landers continued their strong showing at Hall’s Sgt. York Southeastern Christmas Invitational on Friday.
The Lady ‘Landers advanced to the championship game of the tournament with a thrilling 52-50 over Clay County (TN). The Cloudland boys kept their tournament alive by dispatching Washburn 56-39 in an elimination game.
In the girls’ game, it was a back-and-forth battle.
The teams traded shots in the opening minutes until Clay County pushed the lead out to six points. Buckets from Mandy Benfield and Jasmine Birchfield closed the gap to 11-9 at the end of the first quarter.
Heaven Caraway hit a big shot early in the second quarter to push CHS into the lead. The Lady ‘Landers were unable to pull away as CHS maintained a 21-20 advantage at the half.
The second-quarter trend carried over the second half as CHS was unable to extend their advantage more than a few points.
In the final quarter, Clay County used a late run to regain the lead in the final minute, but Birchfield hit a shot in the final minute to push CHS to the win.
Birchfield finished with 20 points in the win, while Gracie Freeman tallied eight points. Karah Fields had five points for Cloudland.
In the boys’ game, Cloudland jumped out early and never looked back.
Hunter Shell scored 14 points in the first quarter to power CHS to a 20-10 advantage after eight minutes of play. The ‘Landers were able to maintain that advantage for most of the quarter and they took a 29-22 lead into the half.
Elijah Blair took things over in the third quarter as he scored eight points in the frame as CHS pushed the lead back to double digits entering the final quarter.
From there, it was all Cloudland.
Blair led the way as he finished with 17 points, while Shell tallied 14 points. Bentley Gilbert had 11 points in the game.