After a tightly contested first half, the Coffee County Middle School boys basketball team took control in the third quarter, going on to notch a 54-42 over East in Tullahoma on Thursday night.
At the end of the third quarter, the Raiders led 42-28. However, the Panthers wouldn’t go away, closing its deficit to 42-35. Malik Grizzard and Jalen Hill did the bulk of the scoring during that run for East.
Coffee County responded with an 8-0 run of its own, taking a commanding 50-35 lead with 2:20 left on the clock. Cooper Reed knocked down a pair of baskets, while Ethan Hargrove and Cotter Neel each added a field goal for the Raiders.
Hargrove went on to add three free throws in the final two minutes for Coffee County. Reed then added a free throw of his own, to lead the Raiders to the victory.
Early in Thursday’s matchup, East lead early, including leading 8-7 with two minutes remaining in the opening period. Coffee County ended the first quarter on a 4-1 run, taking an 11-8 advantage into the second quarter.
East evened the score at 11 early in the second period. The Raiders then countered with an 8-1 run to gain some separation and taking a 19-12 advantage with three minutes left in the first half.
The Panthers went on to outscore Coffee County 9-7 the remainder of the second quarter, as the Raiders took a 26-21 advantage into halftime.
Hargrove led the Raiders in scoring, netting 19 points. Reed also finished with double figures, putting up 16 points. Jackson Shemwell added six points for Coffee County, while Neel finished with five points and Brendon Sheppard and Brennon Young each totaled four points.
Grizzard led East with 14 points, while Hill added 11 points. Jerrel Sheffield netted six points, while Keegan Taylor and Jaiden Sanchez each scored five points, while Khani Johnson made a free throw.
The win came after the Raiders crushed the Cannon County Lions earlier in the week, 48-31.
The Raiders doubled up the Lions in the first quarter, leading 14-7 after one. They pushed their ad-vantage to 13 by the half. The lead was enough as Cannon couldn’t cut into the advantage. Ethan Hargrove led all scorers with 17 on the night.
Hargrove was joined in double digits by Cooper Reed who had 13 for the Raiders.