In & around SEC basketball

By Cole Frederick/Staff Correspondent NCAA Tournament Weekend 1 Review Five SEC teams made the NCAA Tournament, and the conference represented itself very well during the first weekend of the tournament. Three teams – Kentucky, Florida and South Carolina – advanced to the Sweet 16, and the conference boasts a 7-2 record so far in the
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Area teams ranked in ASWA baseball, softball polls

Released March 23 Baseball  Class 7A 1. Hewitt-Trussville 2. Grissom 3. McGill-Toolen 4. Sparkman 5. Theodore 6. Auburn 7. Central-Phenix City 8. Buckhorn 9. Hoover 10. Oak Mountain Class 6A 1. Cullman 2. Spanish Fort 3. Decatur 4. Helena 5. Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa 6. Hazel Green 7. Chelsea 8. Florence 9. Oxford 10. Hartselle Class 5A 1.
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Hokes Bluff gets past Yellow Jackets

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor As is often the case in sporting events involving Hokes Bluff and Glencoe high schools, last Tuesday’s baseball game between the county rivals at went down to the wire. With the score tied at 2-2 on the bottom half of the seventh inning, Hokes Bluff leadoff hitter Dylan Teague worked a
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Westbrook shuts out Gaston in area opener

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Following an 0-8 start to the season, Westbrook Christian is beginning to see the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. Helped by a solid pitching performance by Tyler Self, the Warriors posted a 10-0 shutout in five innings over visiting Gaston in Class 2A, Area 12 action last Tuesday
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Gadsden City's Troup finalist for Player of the Year award

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Haley Troup has been recognized yet again for her outstanding 2016-17 high school basketball season. The Gadsden City senior was one of 21 players statewide selected as finalists for the Alabama Sports Writers Association’s Miss Basketball/Player of the Year awards presented by ALFA. The winners will be announced at a banquet
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Locals make all-state girls basketball teams

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Haley Troup certainly is closing out her outstanding high school basketball career with a bang. For the third year in a row, the Gadsden City senior guard was named to the Alabama Sports Writers Association’s All-State girls basketball first team. She was the only area girl or boy player who made
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Area cagers named to all-state boys basketball teams

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Four area student-athletes were recently named to the Alabama Sports Writers Association 29016-17 All-State boys basketball teams. Coosa Christian senior forward Caden Davidson was selected to the Class 1A second team, Gadsden City senior guard Deonte Jones was picked for the Class 7A third team, West End senior forward Andre Little
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Titans’ Burns, Troup end prep careers in all-star fashion

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Haley Troup and Brooke Burns shared the hardwood floor one last time on March 17. The Gadsden City High seniors participated in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star girls’ basketball game at Alabama State University in Montgomery. Troup, who recently was named to the Alabama Sports Writers Association Class 7A All-State first team, finished
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Locals compete at GCHS track and field meet

Southside High won nine events and host Gadsden City won eight at the GCHS track and field meet on March 16. Hokes Bluff and Etowah won five and four first-place events, respectively. Hokes Bluff’s Tylynn Register had four first-place finishes – the 100-meter hurdles (16.11), the 300-meter hurdles (48.23), the long jump (16-10.50) and the
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Hokes Bluff triathlon set for April 15

The Hokes Bluff Library Foundation along with the Hokes Bluff Lions Club and Tawanna Lions Club will host the “Bookin’ it though The Bluff” triathlon on April 15. Beginning at 8 a.m. at the Hokes Bluff Community Center, the event includes 22.6 mile- bike ride through eastern Etowah County to the Hokes Bluff Ferry Park.
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Glencoe’s Holbrooks highlights All-Etowah County boys basketball team

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Glencoe High’s Cole Holbrooks is the Player of the Year of the 2016-17 All-Etowah County Schools boys basketball team. A 6’4, 200-pound senior forward and two-year starter, Holbrooks averaged 14.9 points, 7.5 rebounds and 2.2 assists along with 50 blocks and 26 steals in 25 games this past season. He helped
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Matt Scott resigns as Gadsden City football coach

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Gadsden City High is on the lookout for its third head football coach in the school’s 11-year history. Matt Scott submitted his resignation at the March 16 meeting of the Gadsden City Board of Education. GCHS Principal Jeff Colgrove accepted the resignation on Friday (March 17). In four years and 47
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In & around SEC basketball

By Cole Frederick/Staff Correspondent SEC Tournament Review The Kentucky Wildcats won the Southeastern Conference in the regular season and followed that up with their 31st tournament championship. The Wildcats defeated Arkansas 82-65 in the SEC championship game and knocked off Alabama in the semifinals and Georgia in the quarterfinals. UK point guard De’Aaron Fox was
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Hokes Bluff's Johnson tops All-County girls basketball team

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Kendall Johnson literally has been the center of attention for the Hokes Bluff High girls basketball team for the past several years. The 6’0 senior post player won 122 games in five seasons on the varsity, and this year her accomplishments resulted in her being named the MVP of the All-Etowah
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Area teams ranked in ASWA baseball, softball polls

Released March 16 Baseball Class 7A 1. Hewitt-Trussville 2. Sparkman 3. Theodore 4. Grissom 5. Auburn 6. Hoover 7. McGill-Toolen 8. Central-Phenix City 9. Buckhorn 10. Enterprise Class 6A 1. Cullman 2. Spanish Fort 3. Decatur 4. Helena 5. Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa 6. Florence 7. Hartselle 8. Hazel Gree 9. Chelsea 10. Southside CLASS 5A 1. Briarwood
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Etowah County Sports Hall of Fame to induct Class of 2017

The Etowah County Sports Hall of Fame recently announced its 2017 Class. Former local high school football standouts Andre “Brick” Haley, Larry Rose, Carnell Williams and Toderick Malone will be inducted at the organization’s annual banquet and ceremony at 6 p.m. on April 8 at Convention Hall in Gadsden. A meet & greet sessions will
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Blue Devils, Lady Warriors win Kickoff Classic

By Chris McCarthy/Editor The Etowah boys and Westbrook Christian girls took first place in the fifth annual Kickoff Classic golf tournament last Saturday at Twin Bridges in Gadsden. The tournament featured both nine and 18-hole formats. The Blue Devils finished with an overall score of 305, while the Lady Warriors shot 254 as a team.
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Jenkins signs with Montreat College

Gadsden City High School senior Landon Jenkins signed a baseball scholarship with Montreat (N.C.) College last Sunday (March 5) at Meadowbrook Baptist. In 84 games, Jenkins had 47 runs scored, 26 RBI and 22 stolen bases. Pictured, sitting from left: East Cobb baseball coach Bo Curtis, Montreat head baseball coach Jason Beck, Landon, East Cobb
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Local teams compete in Yellow Jacket Invitational

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Photo caption: Glencoe High’s Lauren Cole tees off during the Yellow Jacket Invitational girls golf on March 9 at Silver Lakes. (Gary Wells) Westbrook Christian finished in fourth place out of 21 schools at the Yellow Jacket Invitational girls golf tournament hosted by Glencoe High School at Silver Lakes’ Heartbreaker/Mindbreaker courses. The
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In & around SEC basketball

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Alabama Week 9 Review The Crimson Tide finished the regular season with a 59-54 loss on the road at Tennessee. Alabama led 36-22 at the half but a strong second-half surge by the Volunteers in the ended the Tide’s NCAA Tournament chances. At 10-8 in the conference, Alabama still earned the
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GCHS duo to play in all-star basketball game

Gadsden City High School seniors Haley Troup and Brooke Burns were among 12 high school players across the state recently selected to the Alabama roster for the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star girls basketball game next Friday (March 17) in Montgomery. The game will tip off at 5 p.m. at the Dunn-Oliver Acadome on the Alabama State University
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Conquerors' Hampton ties AHSAA softball record

Coosa Christian’s Alaina Hampton tied an Alabama High School Athletic Association softball record in the Lady Conquerors’ 12-3 win over Ashville on March 2. The senior catcher tied the AHSAA record for number of doubles in a single game after going 5-for-5 with four doubles, a triple and five RBI. Her five hits also tied
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Lady Panthers swing past Gadsden City

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Behind a strong pitching outing from Savanna Yancey and a late-game offense surge, Southside High posted an 8-5 victory over Gadsden City on Monday (March 6) at SHS. With the game at tied at 1-1 going into the bottom of the fifth, the Lady Panthers crossed home plate seven times over
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Lady Blue Devils go 4-1 at J.B. Pennington tournament

Etowah High went 4-1 in the J.B. Pennington Tiger Pride Classic this past weekend in Blountsville. The Lady Blue Devils defeated Susan Moore, 8-0; New Hope, 11-6; Shades Valley, 16-2; and Pelham, 3-1. Etowah’s lone loss came against the host Lady Tigers by a score of 3-0. Against Susan Moore, Melissa Love allowed two hits
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Lady Cardinals advance in conference tournament

Raven Cooley shot 50 percent (5-for-10) from the three-point line in Gadsden State’s 74-60 victory over Lawson State in the opening round of the Alabama Community College Conference Tournament on March 3 in Birmingham. The Lady Cardinals (8-18) will face Shelton State in the tournament quarterfinals on Wednesday, March 8. Cooley finished with 21 points
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In & around SEC basketball

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Alabama Week 8 Review The Crimson Tide suffered back-to-back losses to Georgia and Texas A&M this past week, which ended any chances they had of earning an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. Alabama’s offense struggled in both losses, as the Tide scored only 55 points at home against the Bulldogs
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West End's Little leads off All-Messenger football team

By Chris McCarthy/Editor It was a Little bit of this and a Little bit of that all season long for the 2016 West End High football team. Versatile senior Andre Little rarely left the field for the Patriots as they made their first postseason appearance in six years and won their first playoff game since
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Local trio to be inducted into state softball hall of fame

Three local individuals will be inducted into the Alabama Amateur Softball Association Hall of Fame’s Class of 2017 this Saturday (Mar. 4) in Tuscaloosa. Deborah Dixon, Steve Nelson and Steve Salvador will join 31 previous ASA inductees from the Gadsden/Etowah County area. Dixon and Salvador will be inducted as slow pitch player, while Nelson will
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In & around SEC basketball

Alabama Week 7 Review The Crimson Tide won back-to-back games last week after dropping a home game against Kentucky. Alabama knocked off Missouri on the road, 57-54, and followed that up with a 90-72 win over LSU. Those wins didn’t do much to bolster the Tide’s NCAA Tournament resume, since LSU and Missouri are the
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Buzzer-beating trey ends Glencoe's season at regionals

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent With 28 seconds remaining and a one-point lead, the Glencoe boys basketball team just needed one stop to advance to the Northeast Regional Tournament finals. Senior forward Cole Holbrooks had just sunk two free throws to give the Yellow Jackets a 62-61 advantage over New Hope, and Indian guard Campbell Everett
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Lady Yellow Jackets fall in 3A regional semifinals

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Despite three freshmen and a sophomore in the starting lineup, the Glencoe High girls basketball team was not by any means intimidated by either the raucous atmosphere at Jacksonville State University’s Pete Mathews’ Coliseum or an undefeated Plainview squad in the Class 3A Northeast Regional Tournament semifinals last Monday (Feb. 20). Whether
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Lady Eagles come up short in regional semifinals

By Chris McCarthy/Editor A seven-point output in the third quarter came back to haunt the Hokes Bluff girls basketball team in a 59-49 loss to Madison Academy last Monday (Feb. 20) in the Northeast Regional Tournament semifinals at Jacksonville State. Starting the second half with a three-point lead, the Lady Eagles (28-5) managed just two
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Panther wrestlers finish second at 6A state tournament

Photo by Mark Almond/preps@al.com Southside finished runner-up at the AHSAA Class 6A state wrestling tournament last Saturday in Huntsville The Panthers finished with a score of 171.5 to Oxford’s 195. Pinson Valley was third at 148 and Homewood was fourth with 115.5 points. Landon Thompson earned Class 6A MVP honors after winning the 152-pound weight
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Coosa Christian loses in 1A regional semifinals

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Making its first-ever appearance in the Class 1A Northeast Regional Tournament last week, the Coosa Christian boys basketball team held its own in the first and third quarters, with only a 61-49 point deficit. It was the other two periods that severely compromised the Conqueror cause, as Coosa (23-5) managed just one
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Lady Conquerors lose in 1A regional semifinals

By Chris McCarthy/Editor The Coosa Christian girls basketball team’s historic season came to a disappointing end in the semifinals of the Class 1A Northeast Regional Tournament last week. Plagued by poor shooting, particularly in the second half, the Lady Conquerors fell to Skyline, 69-44, on Feb. 17 at Jacksonville State. It was the first time
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Westbrook falls in regional semifinals

By Chris McCarthy/Editor The Westbrook Christian boys basketball team had an unusually poor shooting night on Thursday (Feb. 16), and the Warriors paid the price in the Class 2A Northeast Regional Tournament semifinals at Jacksonville State. Westbrook (26-7) shot just 33 percent (21-for-63) from the field and 21 percent (5-for-24) from the three-point line in
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Mountain Brook edges Gadsden City at regionals

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent The Gadsden City High Titans ran into an old nemesis in the form of Mountain Brook on Thursday (Feb. 16) at Jacksonville State. Just as in past few years, the Spartans wound up ended the Titans’ season at the Class 7A Northeast Regional Tournament. Mountain Brook (28-5) led 48-45 with four
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Lady Titans fall in OT in regional semifinals

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent The Gadsden City Lady Titans fell to Spain Park, 52-49, in overtime in the semifinal round game of the Class 7A Northeast Regional Tournament Regional on Thursday (Feb. 16) at Jacksonville State University. Spain Park came back from 10 points down to win by three points in overtime. The third quarter
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Guntersville shoots past Blue Devils in 5A subregionals

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent A dynamic shooting performance catapulted Guntersville over Etowah, 92-80, in a Class 5A sub-regional game on Tuesday (Feb. 14) in Attalla. The Wildcats buried four first quarter 3-pointers and took advantage of a poor shooting performance from the Blue Devils as the visitors built a 19-11 lead after the first frame.
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Conquerors roll into regional tournament

By Chris McCarthy/Editor For the first time in school history, the Coosa Christian boys basketball team will require clean game jerseys in mid-February. The Conquerors (21-4) led from opening tip until the final buzzer in a 58-51 victory over Spring Garden in the Class 1A subregionals on Tuesday (Feb. 14) in Gadsden. Coosa will play
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Westbrook plows Section, heads to regionals

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent The Warrior Express remained on the right track last Tuesday (Feb. 14) in Rainbow City. Westbrook Christian led by 23 points at halftime on the way to a 72-42 victory over Section in the Class 2A boys subregional round. The red and white clad Warriors’ next stop will be at the
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Glencoe girls headed to JSU after subregional win

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent A 19-1 second half run propelled Glencoe High to a 51-42 win over Weaver in the Class 3A subregionals on Monday (Feb. 13) in Glencoe. The win sent the Lady Yellow Jackets (17-13) to the Northeast Regional Tournament at Jacksonville State University, where they will take on Plainview on Monday (Feb.
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Lady Eagles trounce Handley, head to regionals

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Photo by Alex Chaney The Hokes Bluff Lady Eagles are heading to Jacksonville State University to play in the Northeast Regional Tournament on the strength of a 56-32 shellacking of Handley on Monday (Feb. 13) in the Class 4A subregional round. Hokes Bluff (28-4) will face Madison Academy on Monday (Feb.
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Lady Panthers come up short in subregionals

By Chris McCarthy/Editor The Southside High girls basketball program must wait another year to qualify for its initial appearance at the Northeast Regional Tournament. The Lady Panthers’ fine season ended on a disappointing note on Monday (Feb. 13) at SHS, as Southside fell to Fort Payne, 56-49, in the Class 6A subregional playoffs. Poor shooting
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Blue Devils hold off Alexandria in area title game

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Alexandria had shaved Etowah 15-point fourth quarter lead to three points by the time Andy Noles stepped to the foul line with 5.2 seconds left in the Class 5A, Area 13 Tournament championship last Saturday (Feb. 11) in Attalla. The senior guard needed to make one of two foul shots to
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Yellow Jackets fall to Piedmont in area tournament championship

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent A poor shooting night derailed Glencoe’s chances of winning the Class 3A, Area 10 Tournament championship game, as the Yellow Jackets fell to Piedmont, 50-42 on Feb. 10 in Glencoe. The Yellow Jackets only mustered eight points in the opening quarter and trailed the Bulldogs 17-8. The Glencoe offense picked up
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GCHS girls, boys win area titles, qualify for regionals

Gadsden City defeated Grissom, 62-50, in the Class 7A, Area 7 Tournament championship game last Saturday (Feb. 11) in Huntsville. The Titans (16-13) will face Mountain Brook in the Northeast Regional Tournament semifinals at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday (Feb. 16) at Jacksonville State. For GCHS, tournament MVP Deonte Jones finished with 21 points, 10 rebounds
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Warriors win area tournament championship

Westbrook jumped out to a 44-18 halftime lead on the way to a 72-57 win over Collinsville in the Class 2A, Area 12 Tournament championship game last Saturday (Feb. 11) at CHS. The Warriors (26-6) host Section on Tuesday (Feb. 14) in the sub-regional round. For Westbrook, Will Jones went 11-for-12 at the free throw
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Lady Eagles edge Jacksonville in area title game

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent The Hokes Bluff Lady Eagles overcame both a 10-2 early deficit and a 25-point performance by Kyra Williams en route to a 50-48 victory over Jacksonville in the championship game of the Class 4A, Area 12 Tournament on Feb. 10 at Hokes Bluff. The Lady Eagles host Handley in the sub-regional
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Coosa rallies past Ragland for area tournament title

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent After visiting Ragland jumped out to an early 17-5 lead in the Class 1A, Area 11 Tournament championship game on Feb. 9, Coosa Christian head coach Richard Hollingsworth took his most important timeout of the season. Coosa senior Caden Davidson buried a 3-pointer soon after that well-timed break, and the Conquerors
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Lady Conquerors win first ever area title

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent The Coosa Christian Lady Conquerors connected on nine 3-pointers en route to the first area basketball tournament championship in program history in a 59-51 win over Appalachian on Feb. 9 in Gadsden. The Lady Conquerors improved to 17-4 on the season and will host a sub-region game against Jacksonville Christian on
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Etowah's Wilson to play at Kansas juco

Etowah High School senior Malik Wilson signed a football scholarship with Dodge City (Kans.) Community College on Feb. 9. Wilson also had scholarship offers from Tennessee Tech, Mercer, Shorter University, Independence Community College and Garden City Community College. Dodge City had 11 players sign Division I scholarships this year and finished ranked No. 15 in
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Conquerers blast into tournament finals

By Cole Frederick, Sports Correspondent Class 1A No. 3 Coosa Christian used a blistering start to sail past Appalachian, 76 – 55, in the semifinals of the Area 11 tournament on Tuesday, Feb. 7 at the Coliseum. The Conquerors started the game on a 16 – 0 run, which catapulted them into the area championship game
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Coosa girls dominate over Ragland

Coosa Christian cruised to the Class 1A, Area 11 Tournament girls’ championship game with a dominating 64 – 44 win over Ragland on Monday, Feb. 6 in Gadsden. The Lady Conquerors fell behind 6-0 early on but responded with a 13 – 0 run in just over four minutes and led 13-8 at the end
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In & around SEC basketball

By Cole Frederick Alabama and Auburn Week 5 Review Auburn completed the season sweep of Alabama as the Tigers knocked off the Crimson Tide, 82 – 77, in Coleman Coliseum last Saturday, Feb. 4. Senior guard Ronnie Johnson scored 15 points off the bench for the Tigers (16 – 8, 5 – 6), who hadn’t
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Lady Eagles dispatch White Plains in area tournament

By Mike Goodson, Sports Correspondent Hokes Bluff overcame a 23-point performance by White Plains’ Grey Young to take a giant step towards Jacksonville with a 51 – 37 win on the Class 4A, Area 12 Tournament semifinals at HBHS. “Everyone came up big tonight,” said Hokes Bluff head coach Jason Shields. “Grey Young is a great
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Lady Titans move to tournament finals

By Mike Goodson, Staff Correspondent The Gadsden City High Lady Titans overcame a sluggish first half start to dismantle Huntsville, 59 – 41, in the semifinal round of Class 7A, Area 7 Tournament on Tuesday, Feb. 7 at GCHS. Gadsden City will face Grissom in the tournament championship game on Friday. Since there is no subregional
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Lady Panthers dismantle Oxford in area title game

By Cole Frederick, Sports Correspondent Class 6A No. 8 Southside secured the Area 13 Tournament championship with a dominating 77 – 37 win over Oxford on Wednesday, Feb. 8 in Southside. The Lady Panther defense forced several Oxford turnovers in the first half, and Southside built a 20 – 6 lead after the first quarter. Oxford
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Area athletes medal at state indoor track & field meet

Southside High’s Hunter Nails and Gaston’s Amayiah Hill each won a gold medal at last weekend’s AHSAA State Indoor Track & Field Championships at the Birmingham CrossPlex. Nails won his second straight first-place medal in the Class 6A 800-meter run with a time of 1:56.50. He also won second place silver in the 1600 meter
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In & around SEC basketball

By Cole Frederick Auburn Week 4 Review After the Tigers suffered their worst loss of the sea-son at South Carolina, they responded with their best win of the year on the road at TCU. Auburn defeated the Horned Frogs, 88-80, in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge. True freshman Austin Wiley led the way with 25 points
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Eight Titans sign college football scholarships

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Several Gadsden City High seniors reaped the benefits of hard work in the classroom and on the gridiron on Wednesday (Feb. 1). Eight Titan players capped their prep careers by signing college scholarships – offensive linemen Toryque Bateman (University of Louisville), Quaddrick Rice (Arizona Western Community College) and Tank Collins (Miles College);
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Panthers’ Williams signs with Auburn

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent A large gathering of friends, teammates, family members and well-wishers were on hand on Wednesday (Feb. 1) at the Southside High School library as senior Alaric Williams signed a scholarship to continue his playing days with Southeastern Conference member Auburn University. Williams was a four-year standout for Panthers at running back.
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Area teams ranked in final ASWA basketball poll

Poll released Feb. 2 BOYS CLASS 7A 1. Lee-Montgomery 2. Hoover 3. Mountain Brook 4. Huffman 5. Smiths Station 6. Auburn 7. McGill-Toolen 8. Grissom 9. Jeff Davis 10. Murphy CLASS 6A 1. Pelham 2. Daphne 3. Helena 4. LeFlore 5. Carver-Montgomery 6. Austin 7. Spanish Fort 8. Clay-Chalkville 9. Oxford 10. Pinson Valley CLASS
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Lady Panthers win state bowling title

By Chris McCarthy/Editor The Southside High girls bowling team swept its way to the state championship and into school history in the AHSAA girls bowling tournament on Jan. 27 in Pelham. The Lady Panthers (26-0) went 4-0 in match competition at Oak Mountain Lanes, including an 806-647 victory over Hartselle in the finals. It was the
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Panther wrestlers finish second at state duals tournament

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Photo by Dennis Victory/preps@al.com Oxford overcame an early 13-point deficit to defeat Southside, 40-24, in the Class 6A finals of the Alabama High School Athletic Association’s State Wrestling Duals Tournament last Saturday (Jan. 28) at the Birmingham CrossPlex. The Panthers built at 16-3 advantage with a 15-3 major decision by Colin Edwards
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In & around SEC basketball

By Cole Frederick Auburn and Alabama Week 3 Review The Tigers pulled away from Alabama in the second half on Jan. 18, winning 84-64 behind dynamic performances from a pair of true freshmen in Mustapha Heron and Austin Wiley. Heron finished with 15 points, while Wiley had the best game of his young career as
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Stafford’s buzzer-beater sends Westbrook past Conquerors

By Chris McCarthy/Editor A standing room-only crowd at the Coliseum was treated to a barnburner on Tuesday (Jan. 24). In a matchup of the only state-ranked boys teams in the area, Class 2A No. 9 Westbrook Christian battled back from a 19-point halftime deficit to post a 72-69 victory over Class 1A No. 3 Coosa
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Four local teams headed to state bowling tournament

Southside High defeated James Clemens, 784 to 757, in the finals of the North Regional Tournament on Jan. 20 in Tuscaloosa. The Etowah boys team finished runner-up to James Clemens, falling in the championship match by a score of 776 to 947. The Lady Blue Devils, who posted the top match score of the tournament
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Lady Eagles win county title on last-second shot

By Chris McCarthy/Editor With just under two seconds left in regulation and the ball at halfcourt, it looked as if the girls’ championship game of the Etowah County Schools basketball tournament would be decided in overtime last Friday (Jan. 20) at Glencoe. Amanda Noah had other ideas. Stationed several feet beyond the three-point line, the
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Yellow Jackets cruise past Hokes Bluff in county championship

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Glencoe ran out to a 20-4 first quarter lead and never looked back as the Yellow Jackets posted a 48-28 win over Hokes Bluff in the championship game of the Etowah County boys basketball tournament on Jan. 20 at Glencoe. After jumping out to a 4-0 lead, Glencoe went on a
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Lady Eagles sink Glencoe in county semifinals

By Chris McCarthy/Editor A potent perimeter game and solid production under the boards propelled Hokes Bluff to 54-34 victory over Glencoe in the Etowah County Schools girls basketball tournament semifinals on Thursday (Jan. 19) at GHS. The Class 4A No. 5 Lady Eagles (17-4) knocked down seven 3-point baskets – including four by senior guard
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Yellow Jackets edge Sardis in county semifinals

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent The championship game of the 2016-2017 Etowah County boys basketball tournament is set. Hokes Bluff will meet Glencoe for the crown on Friday (Jan. 20) following the Yellow Jackets’ 54-52 semifinal victory over Sardis on Thursday at Glencoe. The Eagles defeated Southside in the other semifinal earlier this week. After the
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In & around SEC basketball

By Cole Frederick Auburn Week 2 Review Auburn split a pair of conference road games against Missouri and Kentucky last week and picked up their first SEC win of the season against the Tigers. Auburn trailed in the second half but overpowered Missouri behind freshman guard Mustapha Heron’s 16 points. Four days later, the Tigers
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Hokes Bluff holds off Panthers in county semifinals

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Hokes Bluff is headed for the championship round of the Etowah County High School Basketball Tournament after a 43-37 victory over Southside on Wednesday (Jan. 18) at Glencoe. The Eagles advanced to play the winner of Thursday’s Glencoe/Sardis semifinal. Hokes Bluff used a near perfect defensive performance to hold off the
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Stout defense carries Lady Panthers past Sardis

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Southside High used a frenetic defense to storm past Sardis, 63-32, in the semifinals of the Etowah County Schools Tournament on Wednesday (Jan. 18) at Glencoe. The Lady Panthers (17-2) earned a berth in the county championship game on Friday (Jan. 20) at 6 p.m. against the winner of Thursday’s Hokes
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Area teams ranked in Jan. 19 ASWA basketball poll

BOYS CLASS 7A 1. Lee-Montgomery 2. Hoover 3. Mountain Brook 4. Auburn 5. Huffman 6. Smiths Station 7. McGill-Toolen 8. Central-Phenix City 9. Murphy 10. Spain Park CLASS 6A 1. Pelham 2. Helena 3. Austin 4. Daphne 5. Spanish Fort 6. Clay-Chalkville 7. LeFlore 8. Carver-Montgomery 9. Ramsay 10. Hazel Green CLASS 5A 1. Jemison-Huntsville
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ASWA names Mr. Football; Back, Lineman of the Year

Beauregard High School’s La’Damian Webb was named the 35th recipient of the Alabama Sports Writers Association’s Mr. Football Award on Wed-nesday (Jan. 18) at the ASWA’s annual Player of the Year Awards luncheon presented by the Alabama High School Athletic Directors and Coaches Association in Montgomery. A 5-foot-8, 184-pound junior running back, Webb added his
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Late surge pulls Yellow Jackets past West End

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent “You know, anyone can win this tournament this year.” These were the words from Glencoe High School boys head basketball coach Jason Gilley after his “Yellow Jackets” had just taken a hard fought 56-51 win over the West End Patriots on Tuesday (Jan. 17) in the Etowah County Tournament quarterfinals at
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Lady Eagles breeze past Gaston in county tournament quarterfinals

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Hokes Bluff had little difficulty in advancing to the Etowah County Schools Tournament semifinals, breezing past Gaston, 44-10, on Tuesday (Jan. 17) at Glencoe. The Class 4A No. 4 Lady Eagles (16-4) blasted away early on from the perimeter, knocking down five 3-point baskets on the way to a 24-0 lead after
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Harp’s sharpshooting helps Eagles advance in county tournament

By Mike Goodson Sports Correspondent If Gaston High boys head basketball coach Jesse Chandler came to the Etowah County Basketball Tournament looking for improvement in his Bulldogs, he came to the right place. For 16 minutes on Monday (Jan. 16), No. 5 seed Gaston played toe-to-toe with the favored No. 4 seed Hokes Bluff Eagles,
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Lady Lions advance to county tournament semifinals

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Although Sardis High girls head basketball coach Josh Wallace was pleased that his team beat West End, 45-12, in the opening game of the Etowah County Schools Tournament on Monday (Jan. 17), he knows that the Lady Lions must take it up several notches for Wednesday’s semifinal matchup with No. 1 seed
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All-Etowah County football team announced

By Chris McCarthy/Editor The 2016 All-Etowah County Schools football team features a somewhat green tint. Hokes Bluff High took three of the top four awards after recovering from a 1-3 start to finish and make it all the way to the Class 4A state semifinal round for the first time since 2004. The team’s top
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In & around SEC football

National Championship Game Review Alabama’s quest to repeat as national champion ended after Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson found receiver Hunter Renfrow for a 2-yard touchdown with one second remaining. The touchdown gave the Tigers a 35-31 lead and its first national championship since 1981. Alabama jumped out to an early 14-0 lead and appeared to
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Area team ranked in Jan. 12 ASWA basketball poll

BOYS CLASS 7A 1. Mountain Brook 2. Lee-Montgomery 3. Huffman 4. McGill-Toolen 5. Hoover 6. Central-Phenix City 7. Auburn 8. Murphy 9. Smiths Station 10. Vestavia Hills CLASS 6A 1. Austin 2. LeFlore 3. Pelham 4. Carver-Montgomery 5. Spanish Fort 6. Helena 7. Daphne 8. Clay-Chalkville 9. Fort Payne 10. Chelsea CLASS 5A 1. Jemison-Huntsville
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Former Etowah, Alabama standout Rich honored

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Seventy-four Etowah High School graduates and friends honored 1957 Etowah High School graduate and 1961 University of Alabama graduate Jerry Rich at the Blue Devil Spirit Fellowship Luncheon on Jan. 4 at the Attalla Community Center. As a three-sport letterman for the Blue Devils, Rich earned All-Etowah County honors in football, basketball
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Westbrook cruises past Bulldogs

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Westbrook Christian led from the opening tip to the final buzzer in a 78-27 Class 2A, Area 13 victory over Gaston last Tuesday (Jan. 10) in Rainbow City. Six different players scored in the first quarter as the sixth-ranked Warriors (15-5, 4-0) broke out to a 22-8 lead. Will Jones scored 12
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Lady Warriors turn back Gaston

By Chris McCarthy/Editor With her young and inexperienced squad enduring growing pains for much of the season, Westbrook Christian girls head basketball coach Jamie Barkley was happy to see her team come out on the high end of the scoreboard last Tuesday (Jan. 10). The Lady Warriors notched their third win of the year with
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Coosa Christian corrals Mustangs, 75-57

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Coosa Christian overcame a sluggish start to improve to 11-2 with a 75-57 win on Class 1A, Area 11 action last Tuesday (Jan. 10) in Gadsden. The Class 1A No. 5 Conquerors fell behind by eight points in the early going but eventually caught fire and never looked back down the
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Lady Conquerors dismantle Southeastern

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Coosa Christian placed three players in double figures in a 70-40 win over Southeastern last Tuesday (Jan. 10) in Gadsden. The Lady Conquerors improved to 9-2 with the Class 1A, Area 11 win. Coosa head coach Jayme Hollingsworth was proud of his team’s effort in the come-from behind victory. “We played
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In & around SEC football

College Football Playoff Review For the second straight year, Alabama and Clemson will meet in the national championship game. The Crimson Tide submitted yet another stellar defensive performance in a 24-7 win over Washington, while the Tigers gave their best performance of the season in a dominating 31-0 victory over Ohio State. Alabama (14-0) allowed
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Etowah dispatches Douglas in area action

By Chris McCarthy/Editor A good many coaches prefer their team to maintain an unselfishness approach at all times during a game. Not so James Graves. With his team clinging to a four-point lead at halftime against Douglas on Tuesday (Jan. 3), the Etowah High boys basketball coach reminded his players that if they had an
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Lady Blue Devils clip Douglas

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Etowah High girls head basketball coach Ryan Fore was aware coming into last Tuesday (Jan. 3) that Douglas liked to run and gun. His team ultimately grounded the Lady Eagles’ flight plan on the way to a 54-44 Class 5A, Area 13 victory in Attalla. Trailing by four points at halftime, the
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ASWA Back/Lineman of the Year finalists announced

The Alabama Sports Writers Association recently released its Back/Lineman of the Year finalists for the 2016 high school football season. The 48 finalists were chosen by a panel of prep writers from around the state at the ASWA’s all-state football meeting in December. The 48 players are also finalists for the state’s Mr. Football award,
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick Friday, Dec. 30 Liberty Bowl TCU vs. Georgia (-2.5) Kirby Smart’s first season in Athens didn’t pro-duce the results many hoped it would, but the Bulldogs at least have a foundation in place moving forward. Jacob Eason made strides at quarterback in his freshman season, while running backs Nick Chubb and Sony
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Sardis edges Westbrook in OT at Glencoe Holiday Shootout

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Sardis High boys basketball coach Van Owen received a late Christmas present on Wednesday (Dec. 28), as his Lions stunned Class 2A No. 6 Westbrook Christian, 57-56, in overtime at the Glencoe Holiday Shootout Tournament. Sardis outscored the Warriors 16-6 in the third period to cut the Westbrook lead to 40-39
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Area football players make ASWA All-State teams

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Six out of The Messenger’s 10 area coverage high schools placed players on the Alabama Sports Writers Association 2016 All-State football teams. Gadsden City, Hokes Bluff and Etowah each had two players make the first team, while West End had one. Eight local players were second team selections and six student-athletes received
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick Bowl previews and predictions Monday, Dec. 26 St. Petersburg Bowl Miami (OH) vs. Mississippi State (-14) Mississippi State is 5-7 but the Bulldogs earned a trip to a bowl game due to their high Academic Progress Rate. The Bulldogs finished the season with a resounding 55-20 win over rival Ole Miss, and
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Lady Panthers pour it on in second half against Chelsea

By Chris McCarthy/Editor With Chelsea within single digits of her Lady Panthers at intermission last Monday (Dec. 19), Southside High girls basketball coach Kim Nails streamlined her halftime adjustments to one area. Convert turnovers into points. “We created a lot [of turnovers] in the first half but we weren’t able to capitalize on some of
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No. 10 Hornets sting Southside, 58-31

By Chris McCarthy/Editor Though disappointed in the outcome, Southside High boys basketball coach Chad Holderfield found a silver lining in his team’s 58-31 loss to Chelsea on Monday (Dec. 19) at SHS. “This gives us a good measure of who we are and what some of the better teams in the state are like,” he
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick College football bowl previews and predictions Saturday, Dec. 17 New Mexico Bowl Texas-San Antonio vs. New Mexico (-7) The Lobos (8-4) earned their second consecutive bowl bid under coach Bob Davie and are looking for their first bowl win since 2007. This is the first bowl bid Texas-San Antonio (6-6) has received
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