Johnson picked to lead CHS volleyball

Clinton High School has named Lorri Johnson its new volleyball coach.

Johnson takes the reins of the Lady Dragons program from longtime head Coach Susan Zellner, and Johnson said she knows that she has some big shoes to fill.

“I know that Susan has done a lot for the community, and she’s done a lot for kids as far as helping them get college scholarships, and Susan definitely deserves respect,” Johnson said. “I’m excited to get started.”

Johnson has spent the last two seasons as Clinton Middle School’s coach. Before landing with the Lady Hawks, she coached at Knoxville Central High School.

With the Lady Bobcats, Johnson sparked some enthusiasm into a dormant program. Central reached the Region 2-AA Tournament in 2018.

Johnson said she’s eagerly anticipating her new position with the Lady Dragons.

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Dragon and Mav wrestlers advance to state meet

Anderson County’s Stone Cummins advand- ed to next week’s state wrestling meet by pinning every opponent he faced last Saturday. - Ricky Williams
Five Anderson County High School wrestlers will travel to state after the region tournament on Saturday. Feb. 13.

Stone Cummins, Lucas Prewitt and Lebron Derry finished the day with region championship wins under their belt, while two more wrestlers, Gabe Dieting and Kyle Buckner, qualified for the state tournament.

The surprise for the night came from Lebron Derry, who defeated his opponent to clinch a spot in the state tournament as a freshman. Cummins, meanwhile, pinned all of his opponents in under a minute.

Clinton High School, meanwhile, had two wrestlers qualify for state: Darrian Woodruff and Lucas Kendall.

Lady Dragons playing big time at the right time

CHS pulls plug on Lady Mavs’ season

Myra Mustard (right) and Jaz Moore (left) both jump for a rebound in the district game between the Lady Mavs and the Lady Dragons. Lady Dragons won 58-46. - Collin Riggs
The Lady Dragons hosted the ACHS Lady Mavs for the first game in the district brackets on Monday, Feb 15. The Lady Dragons won 58-46 in a game that they led from the first quarter.

Alicia Phillips, head coach for the Dragons, said it was a rough win, but those count.

“We definitely didn’t play our best game, but I’ll take it. It’s tournament time, so a win is a win. Anderson County shot the ball a lot better tonight, but we had some huge miscommunications on defense that gave them some wide open looks.

She said the players all played well, despite the miscommunication, and she’s happy to see Lydia Meldrum and Belle Starnes stepping up.

“Sarah Burton played well, Jaz Moore didn’t get as many points inside as normal, since she’s starting to get double-teamed. I thought that Lydia Meldrum and Belle Starnes stepped it up offensively. Naiyah Sanders had a great game all around with blocks, assists, and everything. She ended with ten, but had a great all-around game.”

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The Orange and Black struggled late, but won

Sarah Burton arcs the ball up and past a Lady Bobcat defender in the game against Central. Lady Dragons won 56-55. - Collin Riggs
The Lady Dragons traveled to Gibbs High School to face the Central High School Lady Bobcats in a game that Clinton won by a single point, 56-55.

Despite a strong start, the Lady Dragons lost their lead midway through the second quarter, getting outscored by 10 points to start the second half down by three.

The Lady Dragons struggled throughout the second half to regain the lead, but only fell further in the third quarter. It wasn’t until the fourth quarter where the Dragons finally managed to hold Central’s scoring in check (they only scored six points in the fourth) that the Dragons managed to claw their way back, retaking the lead in the final seconds of the game to win.

With such a close game, it’s understandable that the stats between the two teams were split fairly evenly, with Clinton taking the edge in two-point baskets (23-21) while Central took the lead in treys (2-1), and both teams tied for free throws with seven apiece. While both teams tied for free throws, the difference lay in the chances each team got. Central made seven free throws out of 20, while Clinton made seven out of 10, and in a game so close, a higher free-throw percentage could easily have changed the game’s outcome.

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Lady Mavs close regular season with win over Ambassadors

Anderson County’s Jaylynn Bullock shoots past Jaz Moore, drawing a foul during the attempt. Lady Dragons won 57-29. - Collin Riggs
After a rough season so far, the Lady Mavs showed their efforts are paying off this week after a 32-point win over the Knoxville Lady Ambassadors on Friday, Feb. 12. Lady Mavs won 67-35.

It’s the best the Lady Mavs have looked all year, taking a strong lead in the first quarter that they only increased as the night wore on.

The Lady Mavs outscored the Lady Ambassadors in every quarter but the fourth, beating them by a whopping 16 points in the third quarter.

For one of the few times this season, the Lady Mavs dominated in almost every stat recorded, with the only exception being blocks, where they lost 1-0. They finished with 26 two-point goals and three treys for an effective field goal percentage of 45, and controlled the paint well, keeping their opponents to only 12 points inside, while they themselves finished with 46. With that paint control, the Lady Mavs also dominated on rebounds, with a total of 47 (22 offensive and 25 defensive).

The Lady Mavs also finished with 21 steals, undoubtedly contributing to their 25 points off turnovers.

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The Hutchison sisters live the sporting life (it’s a family affair)

For Kenzlee and Charlotte Hutchison, sports is a family affair.

Kenzlee once competed in three sports for the Clinton City Blaze, a unique elementary school athletic program that gives young student-athletes the chance to compete. The Blaze program includes competitors from Clinton, North Clinton and South Clinton elementary schools.

Kenzlee, now a seventh-grader at Clinton Middle School, and her younger sister, Charlotte, both competed at the AAU Junior Olympics last summer and both earned All-America honors at last summer’s games. Kenzlee was named All-American in both the shotput and the discus, while competing for Knoxville Youth Athletics, while Charlotte, now a second-grader at Clinton Elementary School, was named All-American in the shotput after completing first grade last summer.

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Mavs take win from Ambassadors heading into tourney play

Connor Martin blocks a shot by Trace Thackerson in the AC vs. Clinton game. Clinton won 54-44. - Collin Riggs
After two hard losses to Clinton in two weeks, the Mavs got a much-needed confidence boost when they hosted the Knoxville Ambassadors.

After a rough start in which the Mavs trailed for most of the first three quarters, Anderson County roared back to life to win by a comfortable 85-68.

Despite the rocky start, the Mavs dominated on most stats for the night, winning on two-point baskets (20-18) and treys (13-5). The place where the Mavs almost shot themselves in the foot, though, was free throws. Anderson County gave up 20 free throws to the Ambassadors, who ended up with 17 points in total from the shots.

The Mavs couldn’t stop fouling, ending up with 17 before the end of the night, which stood in sharp contrast to the Ambassadors’ seven. Apart from that, though, the only places where the Ambassadors won over the Mavs was on steals (9-8) and points off of turnovers – which, with 17 fouls, is to be expected.

Connor Martin was the lead scorer for the Mavs with 20 points, including four treys, and a phenomenal 12 rebounds.

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