Demarco Moore, Sports Writer
Shelbyville 14 17 10 7 – 48
Red Raiders 15 12 18 12 – 57
MANCHESTER, Tenn. — Coffee County Central boys basketball coach Micah Williams went through his usual pre-game routine, talking with fellow coach Ben Holl before the Red Raiders played Shelbyville Central on Friday inside Joe Frank Patch Memorial Gym.
This time, however, Holl was the visiting head coach of the Eagles.
“At first it was kind of weird seeing Ben on the other side,” said Williams, whose Red Raiders spoiled the former CHS assistant coach’s return to Manchester with a 57-48 win over Shelbyville.“We still communicate and talk, but those four quarters it’s time to compete.
“We see the same thing, and it’s good to be out to compete against a good friend.”
The Red Raiders’ (5-1 overall; 1-0 District 8-AAA) successes came mainly on the boards, where they grabbed 40 rebounds on the night – 12 from junior De’Aaron Rozier.
“We practice every day on rebounds,” said Rozier, who also finished with 6 points. “Day in and day out [coach Williams] is always saying ‘crash the glass.’”
“That’s amazing,” added Williams. “It was a total team effort on the glass, and it’s gotta’ be when it’s 40 rebounds.”
The Red Raiders took a 9-point lead with 6:06 left in the game. Shelbyville battled to within 4 points, but Coffee County put the game away at the free-throw line.
Senior Garrett Eldridge had yet another solid shooting performance, scoring 22 points while pulling down 2 rebounds of his own.
Sloppy third quarter dooms Lady Raider
Shelbyville 15 13 13 14 – 55
Lady Raiders 16 10 2 17 – 45
The Coffee County Central Lady Raider basketball team looked like the better team for three quarters against Shelbyville Central – but it was one quarter in particular that cost the Lady Raiders an undefeated season.
Shelbyville came into Manchester and defeated Coffee County 55-45.
It was the first loss of the season for the Lady Raiders (5-1 overall; 0-1 District 8-AAA), who were plagued by a 13-2 third quarter in which the Eaglettes switched to a 2-3 zone defense to take away Coffee County’s strength on offense — post play.
“We weren’t able to penetrate and pass it into our post, said Lady Raider Holli Smithson, who finished the game with 5 points and 3 rebounds.
“Our shots weren’t falling outside, so they stayed in the 2-3 zone and were effective in that.”
Shelbyville led by as many as 15 in the fourth quarter before the Lady Raiders made a run at a comeback, cutting the lead to 8 on an Abby Morgan 3-pointer with :55 left. However, the damage from the third quarter was too much to overcome for Coffee County.
“We didn’t do a good job of adjusting to [the 2-3] zone,” said Lady Raiders’ coach Herb Horton.
“We just have to make adjustments quicker than what we did tonight in the third quarter.”
Morgan finished the game with a team-high 17 points, while pulling down 3 rebounds.
NEXT GAME: Home vs. Warren County on Tuesday, Dec. 6 (6 p.m.)
Reach Demarco Moore at email@example.com, and follow him on Twitter @iam__demo