Through 10 games this season, the Ashville Bulldogs are 9-1 with the latest two wins coming against county foes — Springville and Ragland.
The Bulldogs defeated Springville 45-24 on the road, and then back home Monday, they defeated the Purple Devils 71-61.
Ashville 45, Springville 24
Ashville led from start to finish in defeating Springville 45-24.
The Bulldogs opened up a 9-2 lead with 2:50 remaining in the first quarter before Springville coach Jeff Smith called a timeout. It was 9-4 after the first quarter.
Ashville opened the second stanza on a 7-0 to open up a 16-4 lead, and was ahead 23-7 at intermission.
By the end of the third quarter, Ashville’s lead was 32-13, and they went on to win the game 45-24.
Alex Looney led the way for Ashville with 14 points. E.J. Moss netted eight points while Ray Harris scored seven points. Marcellus Brown chipped in five points while William Johnson netted four points. Parker Wadsworth totaled three points while Jordan Looney and Ethan Fuller had two points each.
Leading Springville was Jason Swope with 12 points. Jalane Ramsey netted five points.
Ashville 71, Ragland 61
In what could be a preview of a county title championship game, Ashville held off Ragland Monday 71-61.
The Purple Devils were down by as much as 20 points in the first half only to fight back and take a four-point lead late in the game.
That’s when Ashville knocked down three treys in a row, and didn’t look back.
Both coaches agreed it was one of the better games of the season.
“I felt both teams played very well,” Ragland coach Andy Eden said. “It was one of the better games I have coached in, and the atmosphere was great.”
Ashville coach Anthony Rice said it was a very exciting contest.
“It was a great game for the fans,” Rice said. “They were into it. The game went back and forth, and we finally held on when we hit those 3-pointers down the stretch.”
The Bulldogs were up 18-8 after the first quarter and ahead 41-29 at halftime.
By the time the third quarter ended, Ragland had cut into the Bulldog lead to make it 51-46 headed into the fourth quarter.
Ragland took the lead late, until Harris nailed two treys and Jacob Bothwell hit another one. Ashville made its free throws down the stretch and held on to win 71-61.
Leading the Bulldogs was Jacob Bothwell with 26 points. Brown pumped in 16 points while Harris and Alex Looney scored 10 points each. Fuller finished the game with seven points while Wadsworth had two points.
“It was just a great shooting night by both teams,” Rice said. “We hit nine 3-pointers, and shot 45 percent from the field. It has been a long time since we started the season 9-1. We are playing well, and I have four kids out.”
Leading Ragland was Jimmy Brock with 22 points. Cody Jones pumped in 13 points and led the team in rebounds with eight. KiJana Lindsay scored 12 points while Jacob Brewster totaled six points. Trez Carson, Devane Brewster and Sawyer Merritt all had two points each.
“I was very proud of our effort,” Eden said. “Our defense enabled us to fight back and take the lead in the fourth quarter. In the end, Ashville made the shots that counted, and enabled them to win.”
With the loss, Ragland slipped to 6-3 overall.