By Les Dixon / Sports Editor
JELLICO, TENN. – Barbourville coach Dinky Phipps didn’t know what to expect out of his young Tiger squad during their road game Tuesday against Jellico.
After seeing his top two leading scorers graduate from last season, Phipps was hoping to have someone step up and pick up the scoring load – and they did in fine fashion.
Phipps’ son, Alexander, scored a game-high 24 points and connected on 9-of-12 shot attempts from the floor, including five-of-seven from three-point range to lead the Tigers past the Blue Devils Monday, 88-36.
“This was a very good team win for us,” Phipps said. “I didn’t know what to expect coming into the game, but we ended up playing well. We shot well from the floor and we shot well with three-pointers, too.”
Phipps said he was really surprised to see Alexander attacking the basket like he did on Monday.
“He’s really been a three-point shooter, but he really is attacking the basket now,” he said. “In the past he didn’t do that.”
Devon Mills also got into the scoring act by delivering a 22-point effort while connecting on 10-of-13 shot attempts from the free-throw line. Jason Mills also scored in double figures with 10 points by going perfect from the floor (five-of-five). In all, 11 different players scored for the Tigers during the 52-point win.
“When you shoot the ball like we did tonight, you’re going to be tough to beat,” Phipps said. “We came out ready to play. In our scrimmages we had shot pretty good, but nothing like tonight.”
Barbourville (1-0) jumped on Jellico, Tenn. and never looked back, as Phipps’ squad built a commanding 24-6 lead after the first quarter. By the time halftime rolled around, the Tigers’ lead grew to 41-15.
Barbourville put the game away in the third quarter by outscoring the Blue Devils, 32-8, while taking a commanding 73-23 lead into the fourth quarter.
The Tigers connected on 60 percent of their shots from the floor for the game, including a 61 percent effort from three-point range.
Phipps hopes his squad’s hot shooting can carry over into Friday’s game against Middlesboro.
“If we can shoot 70 percent every game, I’ll take it,” he laughed. “Our problem now is that we’ve got to settle down and get ready for Middlesboro.”
Barbourville 88, Jellico, Tenn. 36
Barbourville 24 17 2 15 88
Jellico, Tenn. 6 9 8 13 36
Barbourville (88) – Phipps 24, D. Mills 22, J. Mills 10, T. Mills 6, Grey 5, Eldridge 5, Peyton 4, Strong 4, Rose 3, Berry 3, Engle 2.
Jelico, Tenn. (36) – not available.
By Les Dixon / Sports Editor
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