Bobcats get big home victory over Valley Springs
Berryville's 92-80 home victory over the Valley Springs Tigers on Friday evening was a game filled with plenty of excitement. Lawson Jenkins scored 36 points for Valley Springs, but Berryville's Ty Allen put himself in the spotlight as well by scoring 35.
"Our kids came ready to play tonight," Berryville coach Brent Compton said. "It was the best game our kids had played all year. I really think these kids are determined to keep getting better. I'm really proud of them."
It was a fast-paced game throughout and both teams traded the lead in the first quarter, but the Bobcats had an 18-17 lead at the end of the quarter. Jarrett Ray had seven points in the quarter, while Zach Webb and Kyler Kendrick each added four. While Compton hated giving up 80 points in a game, he expected that to happen because of the pace of the game.
"There were tons of possessions," Compton said. "It's going to be high-scoring. Our kids were resilient tonight. They kept finding ways to make plays. They answered, answered and answered. We made enough stops to outlast them."
Berryville extended its lead to 44-37 at halftime. Six Berryville players scored in the second quarter alone. The Bobcats played without one of their key contributors coming off the bench in Brady Smith, who was still dealing with the lingering effects of a concussion he suffered against Green Forest.
"Our depth wasn't what it normally is, but our kids kept battling and whoever we put in there seemed to play really well," Compton said. "And it took us all to get that victory."
The Bobcats opened the third quarter on a 10-5 run that was sparked by two three-pointers by Ty Allen. Allen went on to score 14 points in the third quarter, including a halfcourt shot at the buzzer.
"Ty had a super game," Compton said. "He is a kid who has worked extremely hard from day one. Not just this year. Everything he gets, he deserves because he has worked for it. With this team though, that could be a number of kids stepping up and scoring 35. We have some kids who can put it in the basket. Ty was the one tonight and I look forward to seeing who it's going to be next."
The Tigers never got closer than eight points in the fourth quarter. To go along with Allen's 35 points, Ray had 19 and Webb had 16. Girls coach Daniel Cornelison and Compton were both glad their teams got to play in such a great atmosphere Friday night.
"It was a tournament atmosphere," Compton said. "Our community, student section, just everybody came together and made this place electric tonight."
On Tuesday, Berryville (17-6) plays at Marshall. Tipoff is scheduled for 5 p.m.
Berryville 55, Valley Springs 36
The Berryville Lady Bobcats showed up ready to play Friday night when they defeated the Valley Springs Lady Tigers by 19 points. Berryville was 32 of 39 from the free throw line.
"I felt like we stepped out on the floor ready to play," Berryville coach Daniel Cornelison said. "Defensively, I thought we did a really nice job on them, minus a little stretch there in the second quarter. We did a great job of containing them in a full court set and eliminating their transition opportunities."
Berryville led 14-8 at the end of the first quarter. Lexy Anderson scored four points and Baylea Smith added a three-pointer. Berryville opened the second quarter on a 7-0 run, but the Lady Tigers answered by making two baskets of their own. Those were the only two-point field goals Valley Springs made the entire game. Berryville led 27-17 at halftime.
"When we can hold them to that, we are going to have some success against them," Cornelison said.
Berryville (22-1) defeated Valley Springs 41-39 earlier this season. Cornelison said the Lady Bobcats played a much better overall game the second time around against Valley Springs.
"We did a lot better job of containing them in the half court this time around," Cornelison said. "We kept them out of transition and did a lot better job of executing on offense against them. They do a lot of things defensively and if you aren't on point, then they can really take you out of a rhythm."
Valley Springs hit back-to-back three pointers, trimming the lead to six with five minutes to play in the third quarter. Kelcee Hopper responded by scoring four points and the Lady Bobcats led 40-29 going into the fourth quarter. Berryville went 11 of 14 from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter to seal the victory.
"You are going to win the majority of ballgames when you go 32 of 39 from the free throw line," Cornelison said. "Kelcee Hopper went 10 of 11. Baylea Smith 10 of 12 from the free throw line. Our free throw percentage and how well we shot them was they key to us beating them."
Hopper finished with 16 points, while Smith had 15 and Anderson had 11. Cornelison said as the home stretch of the season approaches, it's important to begin gaining momentum and he feels like the Lady Bobcats did that Friday night.
"I feel like we took a step in the right direction in terms of gaining momentum Friday night," Cornelison said. "It's going to be really key. We have to be key. We have to go to Marshall. And then to Crane. And then to Huntsville. That's our next three games. It's going to be a tough stretch. Three road games in a row. It's going to be very important for us to stay focused, especially defensively. If we will do things defensively, I think things will take care of itself on offense."
Tipoff is scheduled for 5 p.m. Tuesday at Marshall.