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Category Archives: Sports

Eagle And Owls Advance To Tournament Finals To Set Up The Battle Of The Birds 3

To call the rivalry between Jacksboro and LaFollette Middle Schools to be intense is like calling this winter a little snowy.  The teams split their regular season contests with each picking up a win on their rival’s home court.  Now the two will battle in Jacksboro’s Jim and Linda Agee Gymnasium in the finals of the TMSAA Area 2 tournament, which is hosted by LaFollette.  Confused yet?  Problems with the floor forced host LaFollette to move the event to Jacksboro.  It was a gracious move.  LaFollette coach and tournament administrator Jason Dotson said, “I really appreciate the administration at Jacksboro Middle School for letting us move the tournament her.  They have given us great support.  Even though we are rivals if Jacksboro is playing someone else we are cheering for them.”

Dotson led his team into a semifinal match with top seeded Oak Ridge Robertsville.  The underdog Owls pulled the upset of the tournament by taking down the Rams 40-33.  After a tight first half the Owls built a lead after half time and were able to use speed and ball control to frustrate the Rams and pick up a win to advance to the title game.

Roston Letner led the Owls with 15 points.  Dakota Dossett put 7 on the board and Durand Jackson and Austin North each added a half dozen.

After the game Dotson praised his team’s efforts.  “All the credit goes to the kids.  They executed the game plan to perfection.  Rebounding and defense were the keys to victory, it may be an old cliché but it holds true,” he said of his team’s efforts.

As the Owls were celebrating their victory the Eagles took the court against the Red Devils of Horace Maynard Middle School.  The Eagles won the contest by a score of 47-30 on the back of a performance by Darin Gillenwater that probably had the Red Devil coaching staff wishing they had brought a chunk of Kryptonite to the game.

Gillenwater put up 30 points in the outing in perhaps his strongest game of the season.  Even though he scored several of the points his teammates added some of their own.  Trey Torres had 8, Dylan Clawson and Jesse Sharp each added 3 and Will Chambers added 2.  Jared Ray added a point on clean up duty at the end of the game.

After the Eagles victory Coach Dotson spoke of the upcoming match up in the finals. “This will be number 3 for us.  As teams we mirror each other in a lot of ways.  We match up pretty evenly.  Jacksboro is a team with tremendous quickness and great hustle.We plan on using our size and physical ability to even things up.  It should be a great game and we are looking forward to it,” concluded Dotson.

Jacksboro Coach Matt Housely confers with a referee before the start of the second half.

Will Chambers gets a rebound and looks to pass to a teammate.

Trey Torres shoots through the Red Devil defense.

Jake Ivey shoots the long ball.


Austin North battles with the Rams for the ball.

Pat’s Place: Local Sports Loses a “Hidden Gem”

I was actually on the phone with Kelli Jo talking about the launch of the new Volunteer Times and discussing the SuperTwang event when we heard of a single vehicle accident somewhere up the Valley.  The boss lady was up that way so she decided to hop off the phone with me and see what was going on.  What neither of us realized is that it claimed the life of Larry Jarrett.  It broke my heart when she called me back and gave me the news.

First off Larry Jarrett was two very important things, a good husband/father and a local fire fighter.  Either of those qualities is enough to move a man into the hero category.  Both combined could possibly move him to the superhero level.  His loss on both of those fronts is beyond sad and will impact many people, including his family for years to come.

One area where Larry never got enough recognition was his contribution to local sports.  The man was a fighter, and an incredible one at that.  He had boxed for many years and was fighting on a professional level.  Sadly boxing does not get the recognition it once did.  Larry was good enough that back in the day he would have been a star on ESPN.  He had traveled all over the country and even had a fight upcoming in Miami, Florida.  The man even held a pair of World Titles.  That is a huge accomplishment in anybody’s eyes.

An area of sports where he got even less recognition was as a coach.  I heard many boxing students of the years speak of men who helped them learn their craft as ring warriors.  Of course the names Ben and Johnny Foust were always mentioned.  But many of these fledgling boxers also gave much credit to Larry.  Most people only see boxing as a brutal sport where you punch each other, thank you HBO and Mike Tyson for putting that stereotype in people’s heads.  Very few recognize that it is also a sport of footwork and finesse.  Anybody can teach you how to punch. It takes a true coaching talent to teach you how to move in the ring.  That is part of what Larry and the Fousts did for their students.  Though Ben and Johnny will carry on a fine tradition of boxing in our county I do have to say that I feel local boxing has become a little poorer without Larry.

He also coached football on the Little League level.  Now anybody who knows me knows that often times I am not a fan of football coaches on that level, simply because so many have no business coaching.  I know that was not the case with Larry just based on the fact he had coached boxing.  I never saw him coach football so I will work on the knowledge that local football on the rec league level seems to finally be on the rise again.  I also want to point out that while I am not always a fan of the coaches on that level, because so many over the years have just coached without any real knowledge of the game, I do admire them for giving up their time to work with the kids.

So sports fans say a little prayer for Larry and his family.  Also say one for local sports in general. Larry may not have ever gotten the press he deserved but he did his thing anyway and left our local sports scene a little better off than it was before.

Owls, Both Jacksboro Teams Advance in Area 4 Tournament

A bizarre set of circumstances led to the TMSAA Area 4 Middle School Basketball Tournament being moved from LaFollette Middle School to Jacksboro Middle.  The floor in the Jerry Irwin Memorial Gym developed large gaps in the floor due to the se3peration of the boards.  Fortunately the staff at Jacksboro had a perfectly good gym ready to go.  So the administration of LMS moved the event to The Jim and Linda Agee gym.  The tournament is still hosted by the Owls and their staff is handling all aspects of the event.

Opening night action saw both the Owls and Lady Owls take the court.  The Owls were the first local team to take the court against the Eagles of Oak Ridge Jefferson.  They easily defeated their blue and gold clad opponents by a score of 46-30.  Austin North was the scoring leader for the Owls that night with 16 points.  Durand Jackson also scored in the double digits with 12 points.  Roston Letner had 8 points and Dakota Dossett added 5.  With this win the Owls kept their hopes of moving on to the sectional tournament in Pigeon Forge alive.

The Lady Owls saw their season come to a close in the final game of the opening night.  They fell to the Lady Eagles of Jefferson 34-24. Sissy Bailey led the lady Owls with 7 points.  Katie Hamblin added 5 and Amber Guy had 4 points as the Lady owls closed out their season.

The following night saw the Eagles of Jacksboro take the court trying to prove they needed to advance to the sectional tournament.  The Eagles took the floor first against the Clinton Hawks.  They took a victory on their home court by a score of 39-46.  Darin Gillenwater led his team with 11 points. Trey Torres was not far behind with 10.  Jesse Sharp (8), Dylan Clawson (5), and Seth Pebley (4) also scored.

The Lady Eagles of Jacksboro played the Lady Rams of Oak Ridge Robertsville in the main event of the second night of the tournament.  They cruised to a 45-23 victory after a dominating opening quarter. Courtney Charles had an impressive game in the paint and scored 8 points for the Lady Eagles.  Olivia Brown and Krista Williams each put up 7 points for the Eagles.

Play resumes Thursday night at Jacksboro Middle School after a Wednesday pause.

Courtney Charles puts up a shot off the rebound.

Krista Williams steals the ball as Olivia Brown screens Courtney Ellison.

Brooke Bane measures her shot against the Lady Rams of Oak Ridge Robertsville.

Brooke Bane measures her shot against the Lady Rams of Oak Ridge Robertsville.

Whitney Williamson scores on a fast break.

Trey Torres fires of a three point shot.

Dylan Clawson dishes the ball off to a teammate.

Darrin Gillenwater shoots the ball over a flock of Clinton Hawks as Seth Pebley follows the shot in for a potential rebound.

Owl's skipper Jason Dotson directs traffic as Assistant coaches Cody Parker and Adam Ellison look on.

Roston Letner takes the ball down the court as a Jefferson player attempts to steal the ball.

Dakota Dosset scores a goal and draws a foul against the Eagles of Oak Ridge Jefferson.

Amber Guy pulls down a rebound.

Durand Jackson puts up a shot as a Jefferson defender goes for the block.

Faith Evans tries to get a shot over a stifling Jefferson defense.

Sissy Bailey looks for a teammate to feed the ball in to.

VIDEO: LMS Basketball

Cougars Fall in Oak Ridge

Not many teams enter Wildcat arena on the campus of Oak Ridge High School and come out with a win.  That is exactly what the Cougars attempted Friday night as the took the court named after legendary Oak Ridge Lady Wildcat’s coach Jill Pruden.  Unfortunately for the Cougar’s and their faithful followers they were unable to come away with a win in spite of their best efforts.

The Lady Cougars came out strong in the first quarter and took a 14-4 lead that included Courtney Morris throwing up five early points.  After that Oak Ridge post player Armeka Booker, a Mars Hill commitment, took charge of the floor.  The Lady Wildcats took advantage of several lady Cougar turnovers to take a 29-21 lead into the half.  The Wildcats also had a strong 3rd quarter that allowed them to take the win despite a strong final quarter effort by the Lady Cougars.  The Lady Wildcats ended up winning 63-45.

“Turnovers killed us”, said Lady Cougar coach Ryan Browning. “The last two minutes of the half and the third quarter really killed us”, Browning continued.

Amber Young led the Lady Cougars in scoring with 12 points.  Morris and Shayla Wright both had 10 points. Nikki Ward had 6 points, Courtney Miller had 3 and Emily Byrge had 2 for the Lady Cougars.  Kristen Chapman and Rachel Harris each added a point.  Armeka Booker led all scorers with 43 points.

The Cougars put up a valiant effort against a strong Wildcat team but ultimately fell 80-68.  Corey Poteet came up big for the Cougars with 21 points.  Lucas Nelson had 17 and Nick Litton had 14 in the game.

Lucas Nelson leads the Cougars down the court.