By Tim Chambers
ERWIN—It’s been an up-and-down season so far for Unicoi County, but the roller-coaster ride got a little sweeter on Friday. The Blue Devils held serve and knocked off Happy Valley 54-43 in game where rebounding once again was a key factor.
The Warriors had beaten Unicoi County 66-49 back on Nov. 23 in the Hardee’s Classic, and appeared like it was headed for another victory in the early going. Four points by Brennen Bailey and baskets each from Josh Price and Ben Goulds helped stake them to a 9-2 advantage at the 3:03 mark.
But the Blue Devils closed the quarter on a 11-4 run and tied the score 13-13 on Austin Green’s trey.
“They killed us on second- and third-chance points,” said Happy Valley head coach Chuck Babb. “We didn’t rebound the basketball at all in the first half — they’re getting second, third and fourth shots. We go in there and stand in front of somebody and think we’re blocking out. It’s just a toughness category, and either you do it or you don’t. And tonight we didn’t.”