By MacKenzie Bates - Sports Editor
Jan. 9, 2013 — The civil war between East and West Carter resumed its rivalry Saturday with the boys from Grayson winning this latest installment.
The Raiders (6-9) snapped a four-game losing streak at the expense of the Comets despite holding West off several times for a 75-67 win at John “Hop” Brown Court.
Raider senior Kyle Stewart came ready to play as he poured in 22 points 7-9 shooting, including 8-11 from the free throw line. Jordan Burchett had 13 points, Quinn Huddle scored 10 to help keep West Carter at bay.
East Carter Coach Brandon Baker was pleased with the way his team competed.
“We needed a win and we knew it was going to be tough,” Baker said. “It was a good sign that we toughened up.”
The two were tied at 14 apiece after the first quarter. At the half, the Raiders led by just one point at 32-31.
West Carter (1-11) went cold, getting its first field goal in the third with 3:37 remaining in the period. East went on a 15-1 run to end the period and took a 53-39 lead going into the fourth.
But in any rivalry, no lead is safe.
West Carter turned up the energy and cut the lead to three at 58-55 midway through the final stanza. But the Raiders kept the Comets in check to survive the rally
“We knew it was going to be that type of game and we’re just fortunate enough to complete some plays and keep control of the game,” Baker said. “They made their run and we did a good job of coming out of a timeout to regain control and was able to finish it out.”
Coach Jeremy Webb was proud of his kids for battling but he said they just couldn’t get over the hump.
“We didn’t do that tonight and that led to an extended run and we got ourselves in the hole,” Webb said. “They kept working and playing hard and we got ourselves in position to win and just didn’t make enough plays down the stretch in order to pull it out.”
Senior Kyle Brown continues to have a magical season, scoring in a game high 36 points and tallied nine rebounds. Four of his teammates, Dalton Spurlock, Dustin Black, Jacob Layne and Tristan Mitchell had six points. Austin Gee had five and Jacob Nunley scored two.
But the game showed an alarming stat, one in favor of the Raiders, going 34-53 from the free throw line, including 26-42 in the second half. A total of 59 fouls were called in this contest. The Raiders did shoot 62 percent from the field.
“The free throw shooting was because of us getting the deficit and having to play from behind and push the pace to try to create some turnovers and get some quick buckets for ourselves,” Webb said.
Both teams were back in action Tuesday night (after press time.) East Carter traveled to Elliott County while West Carter hosted Mason County.
The Raiders will host Morgan County on Friday and the Comets will play the opening round of the 16th Region All “A” Classic Thursday at Fairview.
MacKenzie Bates can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 1-800-247-6142.