An all-Nashville final?? — CPA, East Nashville hope so
By HAROLD HUGGINS
Could it really happen??
No. 1 ranked Christ Presbyterian Academy and East Nashville landed in opposite brackets when the TSSAA boys state drawing was held Saturday in Murfreesboro. Two wins by each this week at MTSU would set up an all-Music City showdown Saturday in the Class AA final — the first time in 38 years.
Of course, there’s considerable work to do this week in quarterfinal and possible semifinal games played by two teams who were in the same district last year.
The pursuit of the gold ball starts Thursday when East Nashville faces Chattanooga Tyner at 1:15 p.m. and CPA takes on Upperman at 4:30 p.m. two games later. Semis are Friday.
East Nashville’s Terry Holt and CPA’s Braxton Blackwell could meet in TSSAA finals.
Look Back at 1920s High School Basketball
Sometimes when you are involved in the task of house cleaning and organizing, some forgotten items can be found. About a decade ago I came across an old scrapbook that once belonged to my great-aunt tucked away behind some boxes in a closet.
The scrapbook has a collection of memorabilia from the mid-1920s, but further examination revealed that my great-aunt, Louise Joplin, collected mementos while she was a student at the old Nashville Central High School. Her sister was my late grandmother, Hattie Joplin Traughber.
Central High School was the first public high school in the county system. It was founded in 1915, but moved to a location on Rains Avenue (near the fairgrounds). That school building stood from 1921-1971 and is remembered with a Nashville historical marker.
As a writer and researcher of Nashville sports history, I was drawn to old basketball team photos of Central High. The photos were of the 1924-25, 1925-26 Central girls team.
Both photos included my great-aunt, but the latter stated that she was the team captain. Numerous old, yellowed newspaper clippings from this period featured some basketball results from Central’s girls and boys team.
Central High School Basketball 1925
A check with the TSSAA records indicates that the 1923 Central girls basketball team were state champions. That was their only state basketball championship for the Central girls. My great-aunt was not on that team, but as captain of the 1925-26 team she played in the first season of the TSSAA. Continue Reading
– Girls state tournament
ML King falls in state tournament debut
By HAROLD HUGGINS
MURFREESBORO — The basketball season came to an end three games too early for M.L. King.
Guard Tiffany Rechis poured in 28 points, 15 in the first half, as Martin Westview closed the books on the Royals with a 49-47 win Thursday afternoon in the girls Class AA quarterfinal at MTSU.
Rechis hit a pair of threes, giving the Chargers an early boost, and she helped clinch the decision with four straight free throws in the final 28 seconds.
Brentwood rolls to second straight trip to state
By HAROLD HUGGINS
As short as he is, Dennis King had to take an extra step up the rung of the ladder to snip down the last strand of cord under the basket.
“That’s the first time I’ve ever gotten to do that,” said King, coach of the Brentwood High boys, who gave him the honor of cutting down the last piece just after his Bruins trimmed scrappy Kenwood 57-41 Wednesday night in the twice postponed Class AAA sectional game.
“This is the easiest coaching job in the state. These guys are not only talented, they have so much heart and play with so much passion, they’re easy to coach,” King said. “There was a craving by our guys to get back to state, and they did everything in their power to make that possible.”
After never making a state trip in school history, the Bruins finally broke through last year and followed that with a stunning upset of Blackman in the quarterfinals. On Wednesday, they made it two straight trips. Continue Reading
CPA rolls past Cheatham, advances to state, eyes three-peat
By HAROLD HUGGINS
Christ Presbyterian Academy can officially declare itself ready for the state tournament.
The top-ranked Lions completely dismantled a very good Cheatham County team 73-42 in Class AA sectionals Tuesday night and rolled into next week’s AA state tournament where they are three games away from a third straight TSSAA state championship.
Sparked by a pair of early threes by senior Ben Dreher that got the Lions off and rolling, CPA (33-2) blew out to a 20-8 first-quarter lead and won its eighth straight game since a loss to Louisville Ballard and 19th of the last 20.
CPA’s Brian Allsmiller (file)
“The coaches are constantly telling me to shoot,” Dreher, a 6-2 senior, said. “They say any time I can create space, go ahead and take it.
“Any time I can make a few like that, we have so many talented guys on our team that the other team has to concentrate on, I’m open most of the time. And any time I can make few like that, it really opens it up for everyone else,” he said.
Braxton Blackwell poured in a game-high 23 points, with nine rebounds. Point guard Braxton Bonds added 14, and sharpshooter Jake Allsmiller scored 12, with two more threes. Dreher added nine, all coming on three three-pointers.
The game was played before a packed house at CPA, which included high profile figures like Vanderbilt coach Kevin Stallings, Titans coach Ken Whisenhunt and former NBA star Ron Mercer, Maddux’ high school teammate at Goodpasture, at the TV-30 game.
“We played really well,” said Bonds, who had four dunks, including one left-handed. “They (Cheatham) have some very talented players like (Jake) Saunders and (Jordan) Darden who will do well in college.
“Hopefully we can keep playing like this and bring home another gold ball,” he added. Continue Reading
By Bill Traughber
In the fall of 1891, Dr. James Naismith needed an indoor sport to avoid the bitter winter weather in Springfield, Mass. Naismith was asked to instruct the physical activities for the participants of the Young Men’s Christian Association Training School (later Springfield College).
At that time, the YMCA was a base for training physical instructors and general secretaries for the YMCA’s within the United States. Outdoor sports, such as football and rugby, failed to be converted to indoor sports. A small gymnasium was not equipped for a game requiring an enormous playing area.
Naismith’s solution was to invent the game of “basket ball.” Peach baskets were secured from the custodian and hung from the gym’s balcony, which just happened to be 10 feet from the floor. He devised a set of rules that required nine players on a team and a soccer ball. The number of players on a team was derived to accommodate the 18 students in Naismith’s original class.
Vanderbilt’ s Basketball Roster in 1893
– Sectional pairings
ML King girls relish first trip to state
By HAROLD HUGGINS
Less than a decade ago, M.L. King’s girls basketball was a virtual laughingstock. Last place finishes and lopsided losses were routine.
The Royals have risen to the top of the class, finally reaching what seemed to be an impossible dream — the state tournament — first in school history. That once laughable goal came following a tense and exciting 51-47 win over Giles County Saturday in the Class AA sectionals.
In the biggest girls game in school history, the Royals passed the test — albeit barely. Students were boisterous and loud — two male members raced up and down the sidelines, passing each other with huge “M L K” banners during time outs. And when the final buzzer sounded, the fans poured out onto the floor to celebrate with the players.
It all started with energetic coach Lindy Brown King who, in her seven years, has propelled her team to higher win totals each year — 3, 5, 10, 11, 17, 20, then this year, a 29-2 chart, by the most wins in school history. They have made the region tournament the last three years.
MLK Coach Lindy Brown King