Belmont’s McCabe garners TSWA weekly honor

Joshua R.Gateley
Former Mt. Juliet star Sally McCabe in action for Belmont.

Belmont’s Sally McCabe earned Tennessee Sports Writer’s Association Women’s Basketball Player of the Week accolades last week, averaging 20 points and nine rebounds with one double-double in a pair of victories for the Bruins.

The Mt. Juliet High graduate scored a season-best 22 points, connecting on 10 of 16 shots with six rebounds and three blocks at Southeast Missouri. She tied her career-high with the 10 field goals made in the contest.

The senior netted 18 points with 12 boards at UT-Martin, hitting a pair of 3-pointers and making 7 of 14 shots overall. It marked her second double-double of the season and 20th of her career.

McCabe is averaging 15.7 points and 7.9 rebounds per game this season for the Bruins.

Staff Reports

Girls’ Basketball scores

George Page • Mt. Juliet News
Sophomore center Sally McCabe scores two of her 25 points in Mt. Juliet’s two-point loss to Beech.

Beech rallies past Lady Bears 50-48

MT. JULIET — Beech rallied from an eight-point deficit in the fourth quarter and hit a couple of late free throws to stun Mt. Juliet 50-48 Friday night.

The Lady Buccaneers outscored Mt. Juliet 19-9 in the fourth to turn a 39-31 deficit into a 13-5 season record and 4-0 in District 9-AAA.

Mia Dean dropped in five three-pointers and Deshyia Hoosier three as each scored 17 for Beech.

Center Emma Palmer posted 25 points for Mt. Juliet while Shelby Petty and Nevaeh Majors each scored six, Aaliyah Frazier five and Kiki Jervis and Tondrianna Davis a three-pointer apiece as the Lady Bears fell to 10-5, 2-2.

The Lady Bucs led 14-13 following the first quarter before a 15-8 second put Mt. Juliet in front 28-22 going into halftime.

Richetto’s 17 leads Lady ‘Cats to 9-AAA road win

GALLATIN — Wilson Central returned to the District 9-AAA grind Friday night with a 44-30 road win over Gallatin.

The Lady Wildcats led 13-6 following the first quarter, 24-16 at halftime and 33-22 through three periods as they climbed to 11-6 for the season and 2-2 in District 9-AAA.

Freshman Sydnee Richetto racked up three 3-pointers in leading the Lady Wildcats with 17 points. Kenadhi Killebrew and Nicole Brill each added eight while Taylor Tucker scored six in the second half, Bailey Kaposy a three during the third period and Julia Maki a first-quarter field goal.

LaMonica Mintlow led the Lady Wave with 12.

Lady Saints crush Lady Crusaders

HENDERSONVILLE — Mt. Juliet Christian rolled to a 31-15 matinee win at Hendersonville Christian on Saturday afternoon.

The Lady Saints led 9-0 following the first quarter and 19-5 at halftime.

Amelia Lyons led the Lady Saints with 17 points while Caitlyn Smith scored six, Marcella Gallione four and Sam Stilts and Caroline Hibbett two each.

Staff Reports

Boys’ Basketball scores

George Page • Mt. Juliet News
Mt. Juliet freshman Riggs Abner is gaining a bigger foothold in the Golden Bears’ rotation, scoring 13 points against Beech.

Bears finish off Bucs in fourth

MT. JULIET — Freshman Riggs Abner and veteran Isaac Stephens enjoyed big fourth quarters Friday night to help Mt. Juliet stave off Beech 54-49 in District 9-AAA action.

Following an 8-8 first quarter, the Golden Bears led 23-18 at halftime and 36-30 through three periods. Stephens scored 10 fourth-quarter points, sinking all six of his free throws and finished with 13 points, including 7-of-8 from the line. Abner also finished with 13, including six in the fourth as Mt. Juliet improved to 13-4 for the season and 3-1 in the district.

Jordan Lockridge sank three 3-pointers on his way to 11 while Will Pruitt’s eight included a pair of second-quarter triples. J.C. Crawford and Bailey Bryant each bucked two.

No one scored in double figures for the Buccaneers, who fell to 10-10, 0-4.

Allen undergoes surgery: Bears coach Troy Allen underwent successful surgery on a herniated disc Dec. 27 and is recuperating at home, according to the team’s Twitter page. Allen, in his 13th season at Mt. Juliet, took a leave of absence last month to deal with the medical issue. Assistant coach Michael Berardi has been coaching the team during the interim.

Wildcats climb past Gallatin in fourth

GALLATIN — Wilson Central overcame a deficit in the fourth quarter to knock off Gallatin 38-35 Friday night.

The Green Wave led 31-28 before Wilson Central outscored them 10-4 in the fourth.

Gavin Johnson led the Wildcats with 18 points while Naz Czeskleba scored nine, Kito Aruh six and twin Kene Aruh five as Central moved to 2-2 in District 9-AAA and 8-9 for the season.

Gallatin fell to 15-3 for the season and 3-1 in the district.

The teams were tied 5-5 following the first quarter before Central snuck in front 16-15 by halftime.

MJCA boys handle Hendersonville Christian

HENDERSONVILLE — Mt. Juliet Christian collected a 57-45 win over Hendersonville Christian in a Middle Division District 2-A matinee Saturday.

The Saints led 11-9 following the first quarter, 26-17 at halftime and 47-28 through three periods as they improved to 8-6.

Gavin Forsha fired in 20 points to pace the Saints while Caylor Bates added 11 and Logan Collier 10. Jacob Hall hit a pair of three-pointers on his way to eight while Trent Graves scored seven and Dwayne Ewers a free throw.

Peyton Shoulders sank three triples as he and Jalen Cole each collected 12 points for Hendersonville Christian.

Staff Reports

Girls’ basketball scores

Lady Bears defeat Maplewood in Overton finale

NASHVILLE — Mt. Juliet wrapped up the Overton Christmas Tournament with a 57-35 triumph over Maplewood on Saturday night.

The Lady Bears led 16-11 following the first quarter, 29-19 at halftime and 44-29 through three periods as they improved to 10-4.

Emma Palmer powered in 22 points for Mt. Juliet while Tondrianna Davis dropped in three 3-pointers on her way to 17 and Shelby Jane Petty 12, including two triples. Nevaeh Majors flipped in four free throws. Aaliyah Frazier had just two points but pulled down 15 rebounds.

Mt. Juliet will return to the District 9-AAA grind next Friday when the Lady Bears play host to Beech at 6:30 p.m.

Lady Bears fall into Overton third-place game

NASHVILLE — Rossview used a big second quarter to propel into the lead and, eventually, the Overton Christmas Tournament title game with a 49-41 win over Mt. Juliet in Friday night’s late game.

The Lady Bears led 11-9 following the first quarter before Rossview used a 14-7 second to go in front 23-18 by halftime. The Lady Hawks were ahead 39-27 going into the fourth.

Emma Palmer led the Lady Bears with 13 points from the post while Shelby Petty put in 10 from outside. Aaliyah Frazier finished with eight, Ryleigh Osborne and Tondrianna Davis five apiece and Nevaeh Majors a free throw.

Palmer, Davis combine for 60 in late-night Lady Bear win

NASHVILLE — Mt. Juliet rolled past Antioch 75-53 late Thursday night in the Overton Christmas Tournament.

Emma Palmer posted 37 points and Tondrianna Davis dropped in 23 as the Lady Bears improved to 9-3.

Lady Wildcats pull away from Hillsboro in fourth

NASHVILLE — Overton Christmas Tournament officials reworked the consolation bracket, preventing District 9-AAA rivals Wilson Central and Mt. Juliet from playing for third place in the tournament.

Instead, the Lady Wildcats drew Hillsboro and pulled away in the fourth quarter for a 53-44 win Saturday.

Central led 9-8 following the first quarter, trailed 28-23 at halftime and inched back in front 41-40 going into the fourth as the Lady Wildcats climbed to 10-6.

Freshman Sydnee Richetto totaled 23 points, hitting four three-pointers along the way. Julia Maki scored seven as she and Richetto each racked up four assists. Nicole Brill bagged eight rebounds as she, Jasmin Angel and Taylor Tucker each tossed in six points while Sydney Dalton finished with five.

Central offense dries up in semifinal loss

NASHVILLE — After scoring 10 first-period points, Wilson Central could muster only 12 the rest of the way in a 37-22 setback to Stewarts Creek in the Overton Christmas Tournament semifinals Friday night.

It was the third loss of the season to Stewarts Creek for the Lady Wildcats, who fell to 9-6.

Sydnee Richeto racked up two three-pointers in leading the Lady Wildcats with 10 points while Julia Maki finished with five, Nicole Brill four, Taylor Tucker two and Jasmin Angel a free throw.

Lady Wildcats win Overton opener

NASHVILLE — Wilson Central opened the Overton Christmas Tournament with a 61-40 pummeling of Pearl-Cohn on Thursday afternoon.

Four Lady Wildcats scored in double figures as they climbed to 9-5 for the season going into Friday’s 6 p.m. semifinal against the Stewarts Creek-Maplewood winner.

Central led 13-9 following the first quarter and 26-19 at halftime before using a 22-7 third to blow it open to 48-26.

Nicole Brill led the Lady Wildcats with 15 points and five rebounds while Julia Maki tossed in two three-pointers for half of her 12. Taylor Tucker took down five rebounds and threw in two triples as she and Sydnee Richetto each racked up 10 points. Bailey Kaposy connected on a pair of threes for her six while Jasmin Angel finished with four. Kenadhi Killebrew collected eight assists and three rebounds as she and Jaycie Cowan each collected two points.

Frigid Friendship falls in final

Friendship Christian’s shooting was as cold as the outdoor temperature Saturday night and Page blew the game open in the second half as the Lady Patriots captured the FCS Christmas Tournament 56-28 at the Bay Family Sportsplex.

The Lady Patriots led 10-3 following the first quarter. A three-pointer from the corner in the closing seconds of the first half by Hailey Pittman pulled Friendship within 24-16. But the momentum didn’t hold as Page dominated the third period 18-2 to open a 42-18 margin as the Lady Commanders fell to 12-3.

Faith Wilkin fired in two three-pointers to lead the Lady Patriots with 19 points while Olivia Wilson added 11 and Delaney Noe 10.

Autumn Groves led the Lady Commanders with nine points while Ashlyn Pittman scored seven, Hailey Pittman five, Rachel Pippin four and Anna Taylor three. The Pittman sisters were named to the all-tournament team.

Friendship reaches FCS tourney final

Three Lady Commanders scored in double figures Friday night to lift host Friendship Christian past Middle Tennessee Christian 58-52 in the semifinals of the FCS Christmas Tournament at the Bay Family Sportsplex.

Ashlyn Pittman penetrated to the rim for 19 points while twin sister Hailey had 12 as both sank 5 of 7 free throws. Rachel Pippin pitched in with 10, including six in the fourth quarter, as the Lady Commanders climbed to 12-2 for the season and reached Saturday’s 6 p.m. final against Page. MTCS will take on Cannon County for third place at 3.

The Lady Commanders led 13-10 following the first quarter, 26-22 at halftime and 42-37 through three periods.

Anna Taylor sank all six of her free throws as she added eight for Friendship while Autumn Groves scored six, Savannah Craighead two and Hannah Alexander a free throw.

Mary Mackie led the Lady Cougars with 22 points while Kayla Taylor added 11.

Friendship knocks off old rival 62-46

The Pittman twins combined for 31 points Thursday night as Friendship Christian opened its Christmas tournament with a 62-46 win over former district rival Gordonsville at the Bay Family Sportsplex.

Ashlyn Pittman poured in 10 of her 18 points during the second quarter. Autumn Groves dropped in all eight of her free throws on her way to 16 while Hailey Pittman sank 5 of 6 free throws to go with a pair of three-pointers en route to 13. Savannah Craighead connected on 5 of 7 from the line as she scored six of her seven during the fourth quarter. Brooke Jones finished with four and Matalyn Espenshade and Rachel Pippin two apiece as the Lady Commanders climbed to 11-2 for the season.

The Lady Commanders widened a 10-9 first-quarter edge to 31-14 by halftime and 43-30 through three periods.

Lara Britt poured in 16 of her 21 points in the second half for Gordonsville while Mya Harrelson hit a pair of threes on her way to 10.

Staff Reports

Boy’s basketball scores

NASHVILLE — Naz Czeskleba sank seven three-pointers and Kyzick Schweppe five as Wilson Central wrapped up the Overton Christmas Tournament with an 81-64 win over the host Bobcats on Saturday.

The Wildcats led 23-12 following the first quarter, 44-29 at halftime and 63-41 through three periods as they improved to 7-9.

Czeskleba’s triples enabled him to lead Central with 21 points while Kito Aruh added 20 from closer in and twin Kene Aruh 19. Schweppe’s five treys accounted for his 15 while Gavin Johnson finished with five and Kobe Tibbs a free throw.

Davione Moses’ 13 points led Overton. Daniel Belser bagged a pair of threes as he and Brendon Palmer-Rhodes each added 11 and Larvite Barnes 10.

Central will resume the District 9-AAA grind Friday night at Gallatin.

Wilson Central slips into Overton third-place game

NASHVILLE — Wilson Central fell into the Overton Christmas Tournament third-place game following a 52-44 semifinal loss to Rossview on Friday.

The Hawks led 11-7 following the first quarter, 23-21 at halftime and 37-36 through three periods as Central slipped to 6-9 going into Saturday’s 4:30 p.m. third-place game.

Austin Jackson sank five three-pointers to lead Rossview with 23 points.

Gavin Johnson, practically a year to the day after he injured his ankle in the same gym, continued to round into form from a preseason ankle injury with 20 points for Central, including five triples. He hit three treys and 12 points in the third quarter alone. Kyzick Schweppe sank three triples for his nine while Kene Aruh scored six, Daniel Jackson four, Tyler Hayes and Kito Aruh two apiece and Dalton King a free throw.

Wildcats win Overton first-rounder

NASHVILLE — Wilson Central opened the Overton Christmas Tournament with a 71-53 win over Lewis County on Thursday afternoon.

The Wildcats led 20-15 following the first quarter, 32-27 at halftime and 49-37 through three as they climbed to 6-8 for the season.

Kito Aruh’s 24 points paced Central while Gavin Johnson fired in 15 and Naz Czeskleba 14. Johnson and Czeskleba each canned four three-pointers. Kene Aruh notched nine points while Kobe Tibbs tossed in a three and Tyler Hayes, Caleb Lawrence and Dalton King two each.

Friendship falls in Sgt. York final

JAMESTOWN — Friendship Christian and Clay County took their dormant Region 4-A rivalry to the Sgt. York Southeastern Christmas Invitational championship game Saturday night where the Bulldogs beat the Commanders 63-51.

Clay County led 25-13 following the first quarter, 38-30 at halftime and 53-39 through three periods as Friendship fell to 10-5 for the season.

Tournament most valuable player Landon Woodcock led Clay County with 17 points while Heath Kimes finished with 15.

Jake Blair buried 22 points for Friendship while Joe Greenwood scored six as both earned all-tournament honors. Ashton Young also supplied six points while Dorian Champion finished with five, Malachi Frewin four, Bryce Miller three, Hanley Sobieszczyk two and Coulson Porter a free throw.

Greenwood’s 29 sends Friendship to York final

JAMESTOWN — Friendship Christian emerged from Sgt. York’s Southeastern Christmas Invitational semifinals with a 58-55 win over Red Boiling Springs on Friday night at York Institute.

The Commanders led 16-14 following the first quarter, 25-23 at halftime and 38-34 through three periods even though Red Boiling Springs held slight leads throughout the game.

Friendship advanced to Saturday’s 6:30 p.m. championship game against the winner of Clay County and host York Institute.

Joe Greenwood fired in 15 of his game-high 29 points in the fourth quarter, hitting a pair of three-pointers, for Friendship. Fellow guard Jake Blair finished with 14 while Hanley Sobieszczyk scored nine and Ashton Young, Malachi Frewin and Dorian Champion two each as the Commanders climbed to 10-4.

Mason Hix hit three triples in leading Red Boiling Springs with 16 points while center Dalton Marsh, averaging over 30 points per game, was held to 13. Mathew Murphy’s 12 included a pair of threes.

Young’s layup lifts Friendship to York semifinals

JAMESTOWN — Ashton Young’s layup with seven seconds to play lifted Friendship Christian to a 54-53 win over Cherokee County (Ala.) in the Sgt. York’s Southeastern Christmas Invitational at York Institute on Thursday afternoon.

Cherokee County led most of the day. But Friendship was up by five deep into the fourth quarter before the Warriors hit back-to-back three-pointers, sandwiched around a Commander turnover. The teams swapped leads down the stretch before FCS emerged to improve to 9-4 for the season.

Friendship will face Red Boiling Springs, a 61-33 winner over Owsley County (Ky.) to improve to 12-4) in the semifinals at 5 p.m. Friday .

Hanley Sobieszczyk threw in 13 points from the post to lead Friendship while Jake Blair tossed in 12 and Joe Greenwood 10. Young notched nine points while Bryce Miller and Dorian Champion each threw in three and Malachi Frewin two.

Kyle Burgess’ 13 points paced Cherokee County.

Staff Reports

Mt. Juliet’s Jalan Sowell named Music City Bowl honorary captain

File Photo
Wish Kid Jalan Sowell, from Mt. Juliet, will be recognized as honorary captain of the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl.

BRENTWOOD – At the Franklin American Mortgage Company Coaches Luncheon presented by WKRN News 2, FAMC will recognize Wish Kid Jalan Sowell, from Mt. Juliet, as honorary captain of the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl.

In this role, the Mt. Juliet High senior will participate in all of the events surrounding the bowl – including accompanying FAMC president and CEO Dan Crockett for the pre-game coin toss.

 As a Make-A-Wish Middle Tennessee supporter, FAMC has given more than $130,000 to help grant life-changing wishes in Middle Tennessee over the past six years and routinely names a Make-A-Wish ambassador as the honorary captain for the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl.

 Sowell was a star football player for Mt. Juliet High School before being diagnosed with chronic pulmonary embolism, a respiratory condition that ended his promising football career. Sowell’s coaches knew he had too much talent to quit the sport completely, so they offered him a position as a student coach. Through his new position, Sowell shares his strength and passion for football with his teammates.

 Sowell was one of the wish kids featured on ESPN in July as part of the “My Wish” series on SportsCenter, where he wished to produce and be the subject of an inspirational ESPN feature.

 “Some of my most memorable moments from the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl have been getting to know extraordinary kids through Make-A-Wish,” said Crockett. “Jalan’s positive attitude in spite of his setback is an inspiration, and the fact that he used his wish to spread awareness about his condition shows just how great of a person he is.”

 “Research shows wishes can give children the renewed physical and emotional strength they need to fight a critical illness,” said Beth Torres, president and CEO of Make-A-Wish of Middle Tennessee. “Jalan used his wish to share hope and strength with other children and his teammates. By including Jalan in the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl, FAMC is giving him another platform to share his inspirational message with others. We are grateful for their generosity and commitment to helping grant life-changing wishes for our wish kids.”

Staff Reports

Mt. Juliet Christian gets past Providence

Photo courtesy of Twitter
Mt. Juliet Christian’s Paul Christensen, with son Luca, picked up his 300th career victory in the Saints’ 73-49 rout of visiting Riverside Christian in the MJCA Christmas Classic last Thursday night. Christensen is in his 20th season at MJCA as boys’ basketball coach and athletic director. He and Mt. Juliet High girls’ coach Chris Fryer are the current deans of Wilson County high school hoops coaches.

MT. JULIET – Mt. Juliet Christian’s boys emerged with a 32-27 triumph over Providence Christian in the MJCA Christmas Classic last Tuesday night.

The Saints led 8-7 following the first quarter, 15-12 at halftime and 25-20 through three periods as they improved to 5-6.

Caylor Bates bucketed 11 points for Mt. Juliet Christian while Jacob Hall threw in three 3-pointers for his nine. Gavin Forsha scored six, Trent Graves and Dwayne Ewers two each and Logan Collier and David Hylick a free throw apiece.

Fred Cosby tossed in two triples in leading the Lions with 11.

Both teams returned to MJCA on Thursday to wrap up the Classic. Providence faced Donelson Christian while Mt. Juliet Christian took on Riverside Christian.

Staff Reports

Mannings voted 2017 Zaxby’s Fans of the Year

File Photo
James and Barbara Manning, of Lebanon, were named the Zaxby’s Fans of the Year through recent voting at The Mannings were named Fans of the Week during week 3 of the Wilson County high school football season.

James and Barbara Manning, of Lebanon, were named the Zaxby’s Fans of the Year through recent voting at

The Mannings received 36 percent of the 127 votes cast online and received enough food from Zaxby’s to feed 25 people at a tailgate or party event of their choosing. Ginger Raines, of Mt. Juliet, finished second with 23 percent, and T.J. Hewitt, of Watertown, finished third with 18 percent.

Barbara and James Manning were named Fans of the Week during week 3 of the Wilson County high school football season. The game was the 399th Lebanon contest James Manning attended out of the last 401 since 1966. A Lebanon graduate in the class of 1961, Manning has attended well more than half of the Blue Devils’ football games played during the school’s century.

“We, along with the great folks at Zaxby’s, congratulate James and Barbara Manning for winning the Zaxby’s Fan of the Year in its fifth year,” said Democrat editor Jared Felkins. “It was a fitting prize for such an accomplished couple of fans.”

Thirteen lucky fans were in the running for the coveted prize after they were selected fans of the week by The Lebanon Democrat staff during high school football games in Wilson County this season.

Voters had their pick of favorite fan from Thomas Bryan, of Lebanon; Gibby Gibson, of Mt. Juliet; the Mannings; Hewitt; Raines; Toni Taylor, of Lebanon; Charlie Perry, of Mt. Juliet; Connie Head, of Smyrna; Sarah Wyatt, of Lebanon; Angie Richardson, of Mt. Juliet; Steve Cox, of Watertown; Brad Mattingly, of Mt. Juliet; and Carolyn Tomlinson, of Lebanon.

In addition, Ann Wright, of Lebanon, was chosen at random among the online voters to receive her own Zaxby’s Fan of the Week prize pack, which included a chicken finger platter and T-shirt.

“We didn’t want to let these 13 fans have all the fun, so we opened a portion of the contest up for everyone to get involved,” Felkins said. “We want give a big thank you to Zaxby’s for teaming up with us to sponsor this opportunity. It has been a great time selecting and showcasing the fans each week in Sports Extra, and we can’t wait to do it again next year.”

Staff Reports

Wildcat wrestlers win Beech tourney

HENDERSONVILLE — Wilson Central won the Beech Tournament last Saturday with Michael Kramer and Sinjin Noga picking up first-place hardware for the Wildcats.

Cullen Belcher was a runner-up while Grant Fetters, Hunter Borders, Levi Stone and Parker Bennet each finished third and Ross Keith fourth.

Despite the championship, Central slipped a spot in Jeff Price’s state poll Monday, swapping sixth and seventh places with Bradley Central by three points.

Meanwhile, back at Wilson Central, nine Wildcats won their classes in a junior-varsity tournament, including Dominic Hofmann, Michael Mercante, Caleb Blake, William Toy, Luke Pishotta, Chris Payne, Geraldo Valasquez, Jesse Richardson and Chance Carson.

Elliot Ash, Avery Warnock, Tyler Jones and Usvauldo Jaime each finished second while Anthony Dake, Colton Colyer, Trey Scoby and Reece Orsbon each took third.

Not related to the high school program, the Wildcat Wrestling Club won the middle school division of the Tennessee Top 100 Challenge in Pigeon Forge last Saturday.

Staff Reports

Wilmore to receive NCAA’s Theodore Roosevelt Award

Tennessee Tech Sports Information
Mt. Juliet High graduate Barry Wilmore as a Tennessee Tech Golden Eagle in the early 1980s (left) and with NASA’s space shuttle program (right).

INDIANAPOLIS — When Barry Wilmore came to Tennessee Tech, the recent Mt. Juliet High graduate was just a walk-on for the Golden Eagle football team. Earning his way to a scholarship, he proved himself to be a capable linebacker before his career finished.

A bright student with lofty aspirations, it appeared the sky was the limit for Wilmore. Of course, in Wilmore’s case, that’s probably an understatement.

The former astronaut will now see another honor bestowed upon him in January as he was selected as the latest recipient of the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s Theodore Roosevelt Award, the group’s highest honor given to an individual.

The award is named for the former president who helped oversee the organization’s creation in 1906. It is given to a graduate from an NCAA member institution who earned a varsity letter in college for participation in intercollegiate athletics, and who ultimately became a distinguished citizen of national reputation based on outstanding life accomplishment.

And if you look at the names previously awarded “The Teddy,” there’s no question it’s an elite list – four former U.S. presidents, former professional athletic league commissioners, actors, astronauts, elected officials and so on.

A native of Mt. Juliet, Wilmore joined the Golden Eagles in 1982 as a walk-on for head coach Don Wade, starting the final three games of the season at defensive end.

But 1983 saw a knee injury, sidelining him in Gary Darnell’s first season as Tech’s head coach. He came back as a backup strong safety in 1984.

In May 1985, Wilmore earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, becoming one of the first graduate student-athletes in Tech history, then, in the following season, switched to outside linebacker.

In his final season with the Golden Eagles, he prospered. He recorded 143 tackles, the third highest single-season total in program history. He made 21 tackles against Austin Peay, which stood as the second-most in a game at Tech.

In addition to that, Wilmore was selected to the College Sports Information Directors of America’s Academic All-District team as well as the Super Squad Defensive Team by the Leonard’s Losers football publication. He was also selected as the season’s Robert Hill Johnson Award recipient, the Tech football team’s highest honor. Wilmore also earned a Scholar-Athlete Award from the National Football Foundation and College Football Hall of Fame.

Wilmore later received his master’s degree in both electrical engineering from Tech and aviation systems from Tennessee in 1994.

Following his Tech career, Wilmore became a naval officer and pilot, logging 6,200 hours of flight time and 663 aircraft carrier landings as he completed four deployments from the USS Forrestal, USS John F. Kennedy, USS Enterprise and USS Dwight D. Eisenhower as he flew A-7Es and F/A-18s. He flew support missions during Operations Desert Shield, Desert Storm and Southern Watch  and also flew 21 combat missions during Operation Desert Storm.

He later became a test pilot, participating in the development of the T-45 jet trainer and was a systems and fixed wing flight test instructor for the United States Naval Test Pilot School and was a flight test instructor at the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base.

In July 2000, Wilmore was selected as a pilot by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Following two years of training and evaluation, Wilmore was assigned technical duties on all propulsion system issues including the space shuttle main engines, solid rocket motor and external tank, and served on the astronaut support team that traveled to Kennedy Space Center in support of launch and landing operations.

Wilmore made two space flights aboard space shuttle Atlantis twice for STS-129 – serving as the pilot — and STS-135 – the final flight of the space shuttle program as the designated capsule communicator.

From September 2014 until March 2015, Wilmore returned to space as a member of the Soyuz TMA-14M crew to the International Space Station for Expedition 41/42 for a 167-day mission. During the mission, humans manufactured off-world for the first time as the ISS’ 3-D printer made a tool with a design file sent from the ground to the printer. The tool was a ratchet wrench needed by Wilmore, who otherwise would have had to wait until the next supply mission.

Wilmore has received numerous medals and honors, including the Navy Meritorious Service Medal, five Air Medals – including three with the Combat ‘V’ designation, six Navy Commendation Medals –  with the ‘V’ designation. He was awarded the Aviation Officer Candidate School’s Distinguished Naval Graduate Award and was on the initial Naval Flight Training “Commodore’s List With Distinction.” He was honored twice by the U.S. Atlantic Fleet as the Light Attack Wing One – Pilot of the Year in 1991 and the Strike Fighter Aviator of the Year in 1999. In 1998, Wilmore was the recipient of the Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic’s Scott Speicher Award for Weapons Employment Excellence.

In 2003, Wilmore was inducted into the Tennessee Tech Sports Hall of Fame, and, in 2010, was named an Engineer of Distinction by the Tech College of Engineering, and was conferred an honorary doctorate in 2012.

Wilmore currently serves as a member of the Tennessee Tech Board of Trustees and will hold that role until his term expires in 2021.

Winners of the Theodore Roosevelt Award

1967: Dwight D. Eisenhower (United States Military Academy, football)

1968: Leverett Saltonstall (Harvard, rowing)

1969: Byron “Whizzer” White (University of Colorado at Boulder, football and basketball)

1970: Frederick L. Hovde (Minnesota, football)

1971: Christopher C. Kraft, Jr. (Virginia Tech, baseball)

1972: Jerome H. Holland (Cornell, football)

1973: Omar Bradley (United States Military Academy, baseball)

1974: Jesse Owens (Ohio State, track and field)

1975: Gerald Ford (Michigan, football)

1976: Thomas J. Hamilton (United States Naval Academy, football, basketball and baseball)

1977: Tom Bradley (UCLA, track and football)

1978: Gerald B. Zornow (Rochester, football, basketball and baseball)

1979: Otis Chandler (Stanford, track and field)

1980: Denton Cooley (Texas, basketball)

1981: Art Linkletter (San Diego State, basketball and swimming)

1982: Bill Cosby (Temple, football)

1983: Arnold Palmer (Wake Forest, golf)

1984: William P. Lawrence (United States Naval Academy, basketball, football and tennis)

1985: Robben Fleming (Beloit College)

1986: George H. W. Bush (Yale, baseball)

1987: Walter J. Zable (William & Mary, football)

1988: Not awarded

1989: Paul Ebert (Ohio State, baseball and basketball)

1990: Ronald Reagan (Eureka College, football)

1991: Althea Gibson (Florida A&M, tennis)

1992: Jack Kemp (Occidental College, football)

1993: Lamar Alexander (Vanderbilt, track and field)

1994: Rafer Johnson (UCLA, track and field)

1995: Bob Mathias (Stanford, track and field)

1996: John Wooden (Purdue, basketball)

1997: William Porter Payne (Georgia, football)

1998: Bob Dole (Washburn University, basketball)

1999: Bill Richardson (Tufts University, baseball)

2000: Roger Staubach (United States Naval Academy, football)

2001: William Cohen (Bowdoin College, basketball)

2002: Eunice Kennedy Shriver (Stanford, swimming and track and field)

2003: Donna de Varona (UCLA, swimming)

2004: Alan Page (Notre Dame, football)

2005: Sally Ride (Stanford, tennis)

2006: Robert Kraft (Columbia, football)

2007: Paul Tagliabue (Georgetown, basketball)

2008: John Glenn (Muskingum College)

2009: Madeleine Albright (Wellesley, swimming, rowing and field hockey)

2010: George J. Mitchell (Bowdoin College, basketball)

2011: Ann E. Dunwoody (SUNY Cortland, gymnastics and tennis)

2012: Will Allen (Miami, basketball)

2013: Tony Dungy (Minnesota, football)

2014: Billy Mills (Haskell Indian Nations University and Kansas, track and field)

2015: Mannie Jackson (Illinois, basketball)

2016: Peter Ueberroth (San Jose State, water polo)

2017: Beth Brooke-Marciniak (Purdue, women’s basketball)

2018: Barry Wilmore (Tennessee Tech, football)

Mt. Juliet Ice Bears outscore Ravenwood 7-5

Gretchen Smith • Submitted to Mt. Juliet News
Mt. Juliet’s Drew Ordway (19), goalie Sebastian Gibsonand Patrick Guay try to keep Ravenwood out of the net.

Mt. Juliet skated to a 7-5 win over Ravenwood on Nov. 27.

Corey Settle, Michael Settle and Dylan Kraay each scored twice and Drew Ordway once for Mt. Juliet. Lawson Smith supplied three assists, Cameron Barnes two and Nick Roman and Molly Piper one each.

The Golden Bears will wrap up their pre-holiday schedule at 6:15 p.m. Dec. 18 at Ford Ice Center against the Outlaws.

Staff Reports

MJ’s Sanders earns collegiate honor

J.R. Sanders

MARYVILLE — It didn’t take long for J.R. Sanders to take his long-range marksmanship to the collegiate level as the former Mt. Juliet Golden Bear was named USA South Rookie of the Week on Monday.

The freshman guard from Mt. Juliet scored nine points, grabbed three rebounds and dished out three assists in a 90-77 victory over USA South rival Piedmont in the Scots’ only contest last week.

 “I was extremely happy to see that J.R. earned the freshman of the week award,” Maryville coach Randy Lambert said. “He has exceeded our expectations. It is not very often that you get a freshman to come in and shoot so well from the field. I love his energy and he has definitely worked his way into our playing rotation.”

 In only four career games played, Sanders is averaging six points per game shooting 72 percent from the floor including an amazing 8-for-10 (80 percent) effort from beyond the arc.

Staff Reports

Lebanon’s boys use balance to beat Wildcats

George Page • Mt. Juliet News
Mt. Juliet guard Gunner Wilkerson (left) takes aim at the basket during the first half of last Friday’s game against Portland.

GLADEVILLE — Visiting Lebanon pulled away in the third quarter Friday night as the Blue Devils defeated Wilson Central 61-53.

The Wildcats led during the opening minutes until Blue Devil big man Zion Logue sank a long baseline jumper to put Lebanon in front 7-5.

After a three-pointer by Naz Czeskleba from in front of the LHS student section put Central back in front, a Wildcat tipped a rebound into the Blue Devil basket, a field goal credited to point guard Jeremiah Hastings for a 9-8 LHS lead.

Lebanon led 12-10 following the first quarter, 28-21 at halftime and 46-31 through three periods as the Blue Devils improved to 7-1 for the season and 2-1 in District 9-AAA, a league mark which will hold through the holidays while the league’s teams play outside competition.

Noah Mulaski sank two three-pointers in each of the first two periods and led Lebanon with 14 points while Logue went even further out to hit two second-quarter threes on his way to 12. Hastings and his backup Malcolm Logue each added 11 and center Eddie Jackson 10 while Ethan Njezic tossed in two and Polo Phillips a free throw.

Czeskleba sank three first-half triples as he and Kene Aruh scored 11 points apiece for the Wildcats while Daniel Jackson knocked down nine in the fourth quarter, Kyzick Schweppe eight (including a pair of triples), Dalton King six in the first half, Kobe Tibbs five in the fourth and Kito Aruh a first-quarter trey as Central slipped to 4-5, 1-2.

Stephens powers Mt. Juliet to 10-point win

MT. JULIET — Big man Isaac Stephens tossed in 22 points Friday night to power Mt. Juliet past Portland 55-45.

The Golden Bears led 16-11 following the first quarter and 34-24 at halftime before the teams played even-steven in the second half.

Will Pruitt popped in a pair of three-pointers on his way to 13 points for Mt. Juliet while Gavin Wilson finished with five, Ryan McIntosh, J.C. Crawford and Gunner Wilkerson a three apiece and Jordan Lockridge, Bailey Bryant and Riggs Abner two each as the Golden Bears, coming off a 58-54 loss at Gallatin on Tuesday, improved to 2-1 in District 9-AAA and 7-1 overall..

Mitchell Eagle paced Portland with 18 points.

Mt. Juliet, which finished its district pre-holiday schedule, will travel to Murfreesboro on Tuesday night to take on Siegel.

MJCA’s boys eded 46-44 at Merrol Hyde

HENDERSONVILLE — Mt. Juliet Christian made a valiant fourth-quarter comeback, but host Merrol Hyde took a 46-44 win Monday night.

Merrol Hyde led 39-33 going into the fourth before Mt. Juliet Christian outscored the Hawks 11-7 over the final eight minutes. But the Saints slipped to 4-4 going into Friday’s home Middle Region District 2A game against University School of Nashville.

Mt. Juliet Christian led 9-8 following the first quarter before Merrol Hyde edged in front 24-22 going into halftime.

Ollie Talmadge tossed in 10 points for Merrol Hyde.

Caylor Bates poured in 24 points for Mt. Juliet Christian while Trent Graves scored seven, Gavin Forsha five, Dwayne Ewers four and Jacob Hall and David Hylick two each.

Central deals Devilettes first 9-AAA loss

Kaitlyn Hungerford • Mt. Juliet News
Wilson Central forward Taylor Tucker is guarded by former teammate Lindsey Freeman, now with Lebanon.

GLADEVILLE — Lebanon jumped out to an early 10-point lead. But Wilson Central used big spurts in each half to emerge with a physical 43-32 win Friday night, handing the Devilettes their first District 9-AAA loss and the Lady Wildcats their first league win.

The Devilettes enjoyed early leads of 12-2 and 14-4. But Central stormed back with an 11-0 run to go up 15-14 on a three-pointer by Bailey Kaposy.

After a baseline basket by former Lady Wildcat Lindsey Freeman put Lebanon back in front, a Nicole Brill layup gave the lead back to the Lady Wildcats, who carried a 19-16 advantage into halftime.

The game became more and more physical as the game progressed. Lebanon’s Allissa Mulaski didn’t have many open looks, but took advantage of a rare opening to swish home a triple to draw the Devilettes into a 23-23 tie late in the third quarter.

But Brill converted a layup 20 seconds later to put Central back in front to stay, starting a 9-2 Lady Wildcat run which put the home team ahead 32-25 and the Devilettes in catch-up mode with time draining away.

Central point guard Kenadhi Killebrew notched nine points and seven rebounds before injuring a leg or ankle on a rebound attempt in the third quarter. Julia Maki picked up the scoring load with all nine of her points in the fourth quarter and passed for four assists while Jasmin Angel added eight key points off the bench. Veteran forward Taylor Tucker finished with five points and picked up Killebrew’s rebounding load with a game-high eight. Freshman Sydney Richetto was held to four free throws but was active with three steals and four assists. Brill also finished with four points while Kaposy had the three as the Lady Wildcats snapped a three-game losing streak to climb to 6-3 for the season and 1-2 in the district.

Mulaski led Lebanon with 11 points, including a pair of three-pointers, the first of which broke a 2-2 tie and launched the Devilettes to their early lead. Freeman finished with six, Addie Grace Porter and Christaney Brookshire four each, Maleigha Oldham (coming off a likely school-record seven straight three-pointers Tuesday night against Hendersonville as former Lady Wildcat Kendall Spray shares the state record with eight straight) a three and Aaryn Grace Lester and Keionna Britton two each as LHS fell to 4-4, 2-1.

District play is over until after the holidays.

Palmer’s 31 lifts Lady Bears past Portland

MT. JULIET — Emma Palmer’s 31 points from the post powered Mt. Juliet to a 57-31 win over Portland on Friday night.

Palmer put in 11 during the first quarter which ended with the Lady Bears leading 21-11. It as 28-13 at halftime and 44-21 through three as Mt. Juliet improved to 7-2 for the season and ended the pre-holiday District 9-AAA schedule 2-1.

Shelby Petty popped in a pair of three-pointers on her way to 12 for Mt. Juliet while Tondrianna Davis’ 10 including a pair of triples. Nevaeh Majors hit a first-quarter trey and Ryleigh Osborne a free throw.

Demaria Bell led the Lady Panthers with 10 points.

By Andy Reed

MJCA sweeps Madison Academy

MT. JULIET — Mt. Juliet Christian’s boys pulled away to a 58-32 win over Madison Academy after the MJCA girls picked up a 34-15 win Saturday.

The Saints widened an 18-16 first-quarter edge to 27-20 by halftime and 47-27 through three periods as they improved to 4-1.

Gavin Forsha fired in 14 points, Caylor Bates 12 and Dwayne Ewers 10 for Mt. Juliet Christian. Trent Graves added eight points, Jack Crouch six, Logan Collier and Chris Bly three each and David Hylick and Cole Alsup two apiece.

The Lady Saints led 6-4 following the first quarter, 12-7 at halftime and 25-9 through three periods.

Sam Stilts tossed in 12 points for the Lady Saints while Marcella Gallione notched nine, Amelia Lyons five, Caitlyn Smith four, Abbey Garland two and Abigail Easton and Bethany Lyons a free throw each.

Mt. Juliet Christian played host to Friendship Christian on Tuesday.

Staff Reports

Freeman’s OT FTs lifts Lebanon past MJ

Mt. Juliet’s J.C. Crawford drives past Lebanon’s Malcolm Logue early in the fourth quarter.

Lindsey Freeman’s two free throws with four seconds left in overtime lifted Lebanon to a 63-61 win over rival Mt. Juliet in the District 9-AAA opener Friday night at the winner’s Campbell Brandon Gym/Hester Gibbs Court.

Mt. Juliet jumped to a 10-0 lead and the Lady Bears led by as much as 14 points on several third-quarter occasions.

“We started out real slow,” Lebanon coach Cory Barrett said. “A lot of it had to do with them masking their defenses a little bit. (Mt. Juliet coach) Chris (Fryer) did a great job. Our kids were really confused and it took us a little bit to get used to what they were doing. We made some adjustments at halftime and got some people in space. We turned up our defensive pressure a little bit.

“We started attacking the basket a little bit more instead of being a little bit lackadaisical. We got out in transition a little more. We wanted to push the tempo a little bit more, make them run back a little bit more and have to guard us instead of waiting on us to come to them. I couldn’t be more prouder of our effort and the way we gutted it out. Both teams had a chance to win tonight. Both teams played their hearts out and our team made one more play than they did.”

The Devilettes, though off to a 2-3 start coming in, showed the grit they’ve displayed throughout the young season to rally and catch the Lady Bears 53-53 with 55 seconds left in regulation on the last of four three-pointers by veteran Allissa Mulaski. Both teams had chances to break the tie but repeatedly missed at the free-throw line staring up at the opposing student sections screaming their way.

“Our players challenged them at the pep rally today to show up,” Barrett said. “Don’t wait for the boys’ game or halftime of the girls’ game, show up before our game, get on our feet and let’s make it a difference, and they did. Our student section, our crowd, everybody contributed. Tonight was more of a community win because everyone had a part in it.”

“They got it done in the fourth quarter,” Fryer said. “Hit some free throws in the fourth quarter and we missed some. I think we were 5-of-14 from the free-throw line.”

Lebanon’s first lead didn’t come until 13 seconds had elapsed in overtime when center Christaney Brookshire sank a free throw for a 54-53 edge.

The lead changed hands several times the rest of the way. Mt. Juliet center Emma Palmer, who was oblivious to the LHS students, sank two free throws after Maleigha Oldham fouled out for a 61-58 Lady Bear lead with 36 seconds left.

But Freeman followed with a running one-hander in the lane and one, hitting the free throw for a 61-61 tie with 23 seconds left.

“What a ballgame,” Barrett said. “That’s two really good basketball teams. Nine-AAA has been considered down the last few years… It’s back where it used to be because we got four or five good teams that could end up being in the state tournament.

“Our first five games, four teams were in the state tournament last year. We scheduled that way on purpose, and our schedule doesn’t get any easier… The reason we schedule like that is for moments like tonight so the moment wasn’t too big for us.”

“It was a tough night in 9-AAA,” Fryer said. “I think it’s going to be an exciting year. A lot of teams in our district are really strong this year. Our district is way up. It’s going to be night-in, night-out. It’s going to be the little things like taking care of the ball, not having turnovers and finishing at the free-throw line. That’s going to be what wins and loses games.”

Freeman finished with 19 points, hitting all 11 of her free throws, including all nine in the fourth quarter and overtime. Oldham helped key the comeback with all 14 of her points after halftime, including a pair of fourth-quarter threes. Mulaski also finished with 14. Anne Marie Heidebreicht also hit a pair of triples as she and Brookshire each scored six while Addie Grace Porter put in a trey and Akiraona Steverson a free throw.

Ryleigh Osborne was on fire for Mt. Juliet with four three-pointers in leading the Lady Bears with 16 points while Tondrianna Davis also dropped in some triples on her way to 14. Palmer put in 10. Shelby Petty put in 5 of 6 free throws on her way to eight while Naveah Majors scored seven before fouling out in overtime. Aaliyah Frazier scored six as the Lady Bears fell to 5-2.

“In the end, I didn’t think we played very smart,” Fryer said. “We turned the ball over some. We had some people in foul trouble who had to sit so it changed the lineup and people get out of position.”

Both teams are entrenched in district battles this week, starting Tuesday with Lebanon at home against Hendersonville and Mt. Juliet at Gallatin. at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Lebanon will be at Wilson Central while Mt. Juliet entertains Portland.


succumbs in district opener

HENDERSONVILLE — Wilson Central’s recent difficulties with Hendersonville continued Friday night as the Lady Commandos emerged with a 35-32 win in the District 9-AAA opener for both teams.

The Lady Commandos outscored Central 12-7 in the fourth quarter to hand the Lady Wildcats their second straight loss following five opening wins. Hendersonville improved to 6-1.

Central led 6-4 following the first quarter before falling behind 15-13 by halftime. The Lady Wildcats were back up 25-23 going into the fourth period.

Nicole Brill led the Lady Wildcats in scoring with 11 points. Sydnee Richetto followed with eight, including two three-pointers, while BaileyKaposy’s six came on a pair of triples. Taylor Tucker finished with four points and seven rebounds while Julia Maki tossed in two points and Kenadhi Killebrew a free throw to go with six rebounds, three assists and four steals.

Central returned to western Sumner County on Tuesday for a 6:30 p.m. tipoff at Beech.

Bears overtake Lebanon without Allen

George Page • Mt. Juliet News
Mt. Juliet acting coach Michael Berardi talks to the Golden Bears with 3:37 left in Friday’s game at Lebanon and MJ leading 50-48.

Mt. Juliet’s boys surged past Lebanon in the fourth quarter Friday night as the Golden Bears overtook the host Blue Devils 58-50 in a battle of unbeatens at Campbell Brandon Gym/Hester Gibbs Court.

After a 14-14 first-quarter tie, Lebanon went in front 32-28 at halftime and 40-38 going into the fourth before the Bears surged ahead to improve to 6-0 for the season in the teams’ District 9-AAA opener.

Mt. Juliet won without 13-year head coach Troy Allen, who temporarily stepped aside earlier in the day while he awaits possible surgery for a slipped disc. Assistant coach Michael Berardi took over on the bench.

“They had more offensive rebounds in the second half,” Lebanon coach Jim McDowell said of the Bears’ rally. “They did a good job on crashing the boards.

“Our prayers to Coach Allen. He’s a tremendous coach and a good friend. Hope he’s able to come back real soon. Tip my hat to Coach Berardi. Their kids outworked us and he outcoached us.”

Jordan Lockridge threw in three 3-pointers to lead Mt. Juliet with 19 points while big man Isaac Stephens added 11. Gavin Wilson’s eight included a pair of threes while Brian Aiken scored six; J.C. Crawford, Gunner Wilkerson and Will Pruitt four each and Riggs Abner two.

Point guard Jeremiah Hastings hit a pair of threes in leading Lebanon with 19 points while senior Noah Mulaski injured his ankle at the end of the first half after scoring 16 and did not return. Eddie Jackson supplied seven, Malcolm Logue and Polo Phillips three each and Zion Logue two as the Blue Devils fell to 5-1.

Mt. Juliet traveled to Gallatin on Tuesday night.

Hendersonville edges Central 49-47

HENDERSONVILLE — Hendersonville pulled out a 49-47 win over Wilson Central in the teams’ District 9-AAA opener Friday night.

The teams were tied 27-27 at halftime before Central surged ahead 40-37 going into the fourth quarter. But Hendersonville ended the Wildcats’ three-game winning streak as they slipped to 3-4.

Zach Morris threw in three 3-pointers in leading Hendersonville with 17 points while Noah Taylor added eight of his 11 after halftime.

Naz Czesleba’s 12 points paced Central while Daniel Johnson tossed in 10. Kyzick Schweppe sank three 3-pointers for his nine while Kito Aruh had all of his nine in the first half. Dalton King finished with five and Kene Aruh two free throws.

Central returned to western Sumner County on Tuesday night to battle Beech.

Staff Reports

Mt. Juliet coach temporarily steps aside

Allen turns Golden Bear reins over to deal with health issue

George Page • Mt. Juliet News/File
Troy Allen

Mt. Juliet High boys’ basketball coach Troy Allen is stepping aside from his coaching duties temporarily to deal with a health issue.

Allen notified principal Mel Brown by email Friday of his decision. Assistant coach Michael Berardi took over as head coach, beginning with Friday’s District 9-AAA opener at Lebanon, with Jonathan Drake serving as lead assistant and junior-varsity coach. Nate Stewart will continue as varsity assistant and freshman coach.

“I have a herniated disk in my neck,” Allen told The Lebanon Democrat/Mt. Juliet News late Friday afternoon. “Last Monday, I sat on the bench and Michael Berardi was the head coach (in a home win over Ravenwood which boosted the Golden Bears’ record to 5-0).

“I got a shot in my back and hoped it would help and it didn’t. I can’t function as a head coach right now and I need to get it fixed.

“I’m meeting with a surgeon next week and I’ll be having surgery on my back… I can’t do anything halfway. I think it’s best to get healthy and let those guys coach. They’ll do a good job.

Allen, who will turn 48 next month, is in his 13th season as coach, having taken the Golden Bears to four Class AAA sectionals, including the last three in a row. He was 226-128 going into the Lebanon game. Ironically, his lone losing season may have been his best as a coach as the 2014-15 Bears started 3-12 before rebounding to finish in the sectional with a final 16-17 mark, earning him District 9-AAA coach of the year honors. Before coming to Mt. Juliet, Allen spent 10 years at Hillsboro, including the last seven as head coach as the Burros went 149-77, giving him a 375-205 career mark.

“We’re playing pretty good,” Allen said. “We have a chance to be really good.

“I just need to get better.”

Allen teaches PE and wellness and was not sure if he would continue with his classroom duties.

By Andy Reed

Boys’ Basketball Scores

‘Cats whip Page

George Page • Mt. Juliet News
Golden Bear big man Brian Aiken slams against Oakland.

Wilson Central muscled past Page 54-43 Saturday night to bring the curtain down on the John Greer State Farm Thanksgiving Classic at Lebanon’s Campbell Brandon Gym/Hester Gibbs Court.

The Wildcats led 11-7 following the first quarter, 22-13 at halftime and 36-25 through three periods.

Kito Aruh scored 16 points for Central while Naz Czesleba added 11 and Kene Aruh 10. Tyler Hayes hit a pair of third-quarter three-pointers on his way to eight while Daniel Jackson dropped in all four of his fourth-period free throws for his points. Kobe Tibbs tossed in a three and Kyzick Schweppe two as the Wildcats won their second straight following three opening losses.

Central finds range from deep for first win

Wilson Central’s boys didn’t have the injured Gavin Johnson’s three-point shooting, but his teammates made up for the difference by swishing 11 long-range bombs as the Wildcats wore out Sycamore 57-32 for their first win of the season Friday afternoon in the John Greer State Farm Thanksgiving Classic at Lebanon’s Campbell Brandon Gym/Hester Gibbs Court.

Perhaps the biggest jolt for Central was big man Kito Aruh, who stepped outside to join guard Naz Czeskleba with three 3-pointers apiece on their way to 13 points. Kene Aruh tossed in 10 from inside while Kyzick Schweppe knocked down nine points on three triples. Tyler Hayes and Caleb Lawrence each threw in a three while Daniel Jacksoin, Dalton King and Josh Gibson totaled two apiece as the Wildcats climbed to 1-3.

Central shot out to a 19-4 first-quarter lead. The Wildcats were up 37-6 at halftime and 44-11 through three before Sycamore found some offense in the fourth.

Wilson Central struggles in 62-36 loss to Ravenwood

GLADEVILLE — With Gavin Johnson sidelined by a preseason ankle injury, points were hard to come by for Wilson Central in a 62-36 loss to visiting Ravenwood on Tuesday night.

The Raptors pulled away at the end of the first quarter to lead 16-10, were up 31-17 at halftime and 48-27 through three periods as the Wildcats, who lost Johnson to his injury in their final preseason scrimmage Nov. 11, fell to 0-3.

Connor Tudeen threw in three 3-pointers to lead Ravenwood with 12 points while Jaden Smallwood notched nine of his 11 in the third quarter. Ben Gleason’s hot period was the second as he scored six of his 11.

Naz Czeskleba sank a pair of first-half threes and led Central with 10 points while brothers Kito and Kene Aruh each knocked down nine in the post. Tyler Hayes and Daniel Jackson threw in three apiece and Kyzick Schweppe two.

Bears dominate third period to beat unbeaten Oakland

MT. JULIET — Mt. Juliet’s boys dominated the third quarter in a battle of unbeatens Tuesday night as the Golden Bears came from behind to defeat Oakland 60-56.

The Patriots, coached by former Wilson Central coach Troy Bond, had a 15-14 first-quarter edge and were up 30-27 at halftime. But the Bears owned the third period 12-3 to go up 39-33 as they improved to 4-0.

Senior guard Jordan Lockridge led Mt. Juliet with 23 points while center Isaac Stephens knocked down 19 in the post. Gavin Wilson sank a pair of three-pointers as he and Brian Aiken each scored six while Will Pruitt put in four and J.C. Crawford two.

Krishan Davidson dropped in five three-pointers to pace the Patriots with 28 points while Ray Tyler threw in 13 as Oakland fell to 3-1.

MJCA battles past


MURFREESBORO — Mt. Juliet Christian opened a little breathing room in the second half Tuesday night as the Saints defeated host Providence Christian 33-24.

The Saints held an 11-10 first-quarter edge and were up 17-16 at halftime before expanding the lead to 25-20 going into the fourth as they improved to 2-1.

Gavin Forsha threw in 13 points and Caylor Bates 11 for Mt. Juliet Christian. Trent Graves finished with five and Jack Crouch and Logan Collier two each.

Will Rowland tossed in 12 points and Fred Cosby 10 for the 0-2 Lions.

Lady Bears shoot down Oakland 66-38

MT. JULIET — Mt. Juliet knocked down nine three-pointers Tuesday night in a 66-38 thumping of Oakland.

Tondrianna Davis dropped in all 16 of her points, including four triples, in the second half for Mt. Juliet. Aaliyah Frazier muscled in eight of her 12 in the second quarter from closer in while center Emma Palmer powered in 11. Former Lady Patriot Shelby Petty poured in three triples for her nine while Nevaeh Majors added eight, Ryleigh Osborne six (on two threes) and Halle Jones four in the fourth quarter as the Lady Bears improved to 3-1.

Faith Adams led the Lady Patriots with 10 points.

The Lady Bears led 16-9 following the first quarter, 27-14 at halftime and 48-23 through three periods.

Mt. Juliet will travel to Independence on Friday for a 1 p.m. matinee against Siegel.

Staff Reports