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Eastside boys, girls breeze into Region 1D semis

Kevin Mays • Feb 20, 2019 at 2:34 AM

COEBURN — Eastside used the long ball to pick up a Region 1D boys basketball quarterfinal win Tuesday on its home court.

The Spartans (23-3) connected on a combined 12 3-point shots from four players to take an 82-66 win over Northwood.

Ethan Powers did most of the damage for the Spartans. The senior hit six 3-point shots and finished with 35 points.

Chris Swann totaled 15 points and 12 rebounds for Eastside, and Nick Livingston had 14 points. Connor Blevins pulled down 10 rebounds and had five assists.

View the photos from Tuesday’s games at Eastside

“We knocked down some shots there early and that sort of set the tone and let us get out to a big lead,” said Eastside coach Patrick Damron, whose squad started strong and played that way the rest of the contest.

The Spartans used their trapping zone defense to create several Holston mistakes that led to points on the Eastside end of the court.

“Our defense sort of sets the tone for our offense a lot and I think that happened tonight,” Damron said. “We pressure the ball a lot more than most teams that play a zone. Our style is an attack style and we kind of impose our will on other teams with our defense sometimes. It’s sort of a crazy style that other teams have a hard time adjusting to.”

The Spartans led 46-28 at halftime and cruised through the final two quarters.

With Damron substituting early and often, Northwood outscored Eastside 18-9 in the final period. But the damage had already been done.

Tyler Strong led Northwood’s scorers with 20 points. Eli Carter and Michael Frye added 13 points each.

Eastside advanced to the regional semifinals on Friday. The Spartans will face Black Diamond District champion Grundy in a game scheduled for an 8:30 p.m. start at Virginia High in Bristol.

LADY SPARTANS ON TO SEMIFINALS

Eastside wasted little time in taking control of its Region 1D quarterfinal game, racing away to a 68-43 victory over Holston.

The Lady Spartans (19-6) jumped ahead early and battled off a determined Lady Cavaliers squad in the first half of the opening frame before using an 8-1 run to close out the period.

After giving up a quarter-opening basket to Holston (8-16) in the second, Eastside used a 10-0 run to build a 27-11 advantage.

The Lady Spartans kept a double-digit lead the rest of the way.

Coach Barry Ruff was pleased with his Lady Spartans’ scoring but even more pleased with the way they played defense.

“We played good defense. We caused some turnovers and we used our press to cause some shooting problems for them,” Ruff said. “We press to make you take a bad shot, not just create a turnover.”

Kaylee Yates finished with a double-double for Eastside with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Chloe Powers had 13 points and Anna Whited finished with 11 points and seven steals.

Liyah French led Holston with 20 points, and Claudia Frost added 11.

The Lady Spartans advanced to Friday’s Region 1D semifinals at Virginia High’s Bearcat Den where they’ll take on Black Diamond champion Honaker at 5:30 p.m.

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