By Jerry Richmond, Sports Staff Writer

Trousdale County had two nights of basketball action last week, with the boys and girls winning and losing a game each.

The highlight of the week was perhaps the Yellow Jackets’ 74-66 home victory over Clay County (13-7, 6-3 6-A) on Tuesday. The Bulldogs won their district and region last year before losing in the state championship game.

“This win was big for us mentally,” said coach Ryan Sleeper. “It’s been a long time since we have gotten a win against Clay County. They have a great program going up there.

“The improvement is there. We are beating teams that beat us earlier in the season. Hopefully we can carry the momentum the rest of the season into the tournament.”

The Jackets trailed just once at 50-49 late in the third quarter before outscoring the Bulldogs 24-16 in the fourth.

Junior Keyvont Baines paced the way with 20 points, 17 in the second half, as the Jackets snapped a 12-game losing streak to the Bulldogs.

Senior Braison Raney added 15 points and sophomore Kobe Ford had a career-best 13. Sophomore Tarvaris Claiborne also had a career night with nine points, seven of which came at the free-throw line. Junior Will Belcher had eight, freshman Alex Ford six and senior Trace McGuire three.

In the girls’ game, the Lady Jackets were outscored in every quarter of a 67-44 loss to the Lady Bulldogs (11-8, 6-3).

“Too many turnovers doomed us early,” said coach Jeremy Wilhelm.

Senior Katelyn Fergusson had 13 points, including three 3-pointers, while the Lady Jackets got nine each from sophomore Tori Simmons and freshman Claire Belcher. Sophomore Chloe Donoho had seven points, senior Kaylynn Dalton four and freshman Morgan White two.

On Friday the Jackets (8-12, 3-7) traveled to Monterey, where the boys trailed by 18 going into the fourth quarter but rallied before falling 65-56 to the Wildcats (21-3, 10-1), who are ranked No. 6 in the state.

“Monterey is a really well-balanced team,” Sleeper said. “They are tough at home and don’t have many weaknesses.

“We didn’t shoot well the first three quarters. I was proud of our boys though. They showed a lot of heart and never gave up. We cut it to single digits but just ran out of time.

“We aren’t scared of any team and know we can play with anyone in our district.”

Raney finished with 20 points, while Baines had 13 and McGuire 10. Kobe Ford and Alex Ford each had four points, Belcher had three and senior Octavius Rickman two.

In the girls’ game, the Lady Jackets (7-13, 4-6) outscored the Lady Wildcats (2-19, 2-9) 22-8 in the fourth quarter to pull away for a 61-42 win.

“A good district win to put ourselves in a spot to improve our district seeding,” Wilhelm said. “The girls came out aggressive and did what we knew would put us in a position to have success.

“It was a great way to finish the game late. We’re better now than we were a month ago.”

Simmons had the best night of any Lady Jacket this season as she finished with a career-best 25 points. Fergusson added 13 points and Dalton had seven. Donoho had six points, Belcher four, White two, sophomore Karissa Goss two and freshman Sidney Gregory two.

Trousdale County will host Red Boiling Springs on Friday for homecoming. Festivities will begin at 5 p.m.

Next week, Trousdale County will play at Gordonsville on Monday and host Pickett County on Tuesday for Senior Night.