North Buncombe – On Novermber 8, North Buncombe Middle School’s boys team launched their ‘21-’22 season with a scrimmage against Rugby Middle in Henderson County.
This game started off by introducing the team’s newest players: Adrian Allen, Jaxson Beckwith, Davis Franklin, Noah Hinch, Aiden King, Henry Lesh and Isaac Ray. They played an unscored “fifth quarter,” before returning players took to the court. Rugby briefly took their only lead of the game before the Blackhawks got to work, dismantling Rugby’s defense and storming ahead to take home the win with a final score of 51-22.
November 10 was the first conference game of the season away at Erwin Middle. This time, the team’s starting players Abram Allison, Ian Bailey, Trent Clark, Hayden Jamerson and Leslie Otis wasted no time bringing their A-game. By the end of the first quarter, the boys were dominating with a score of 26-1. By the half, Erwin had only managed to score nine points. The Blackhawks’ killer defense continued full throttle in the second half of the game with only one more basket getting by them. The Blackhawks had a total of 30 rebounds and 19 steals. Ian Bailey and Trent Clark were the team’s leading scorers with 18 and 16 points. They were followed by Abram Allison, Leslie Otis and Tripp Switzer with eight, seven and six points, respectively. The final score was 59-11, with the Blackhawks bringing home another impressive victory.
First Home Game
Monday the fifteenth was the first home game for the Blackhawks versus the Enka Jets. As the team took to the court, the gym was buzzing with energy and erupted with applause. Right from the tip-off, the boys dominated the first half, which ended as Parker Hyatt hit a three-pointer leaving the team with almost a twenty-five-point lead at 39-15. After the half, the team was well ahead, allowing younger players, such as Jaxson Beckworth, who scored 5 points, to rise to the challenge. The team had a total of 21 rebounds, 13 being defensive and 15 steals, immobilizing Enka’s offense. Ian Bailey was the lead scorer with a whopping 22 points, and Clark scored eight and Allison six points, respectively. The boys took home another crushing victory with a final score of 56-22.
Thursday the 17th, the team traveled to Fairview to take on the Reynolds Rockets. With ’18, 19’, and ’20 championship banners on the wall, the Rockets were hungry. Neither offense managed to score until well into the first quarter when the Rockets struck first with a free throw. That was all it took for the Blackhawks to flip their switch.
For the next several minutes, all the way to the half, the North Buncombe boys were surging ahead. By the half, they were up 34-9, playing like a fine-tuned machine stealing, passing, shooting, and rebounding together. It was electric to watch. Ian Bailey had an outstanding performance scoring 23 points and getting nine rebounds, just one away from earning a double-double. Trent Clark closely followed with 18 points and three rebounds. Other offensive contributors were Otis with six points, Hyatt with five, Allison with three, and newcomer Noah Hinch with three. Defensively the team continued to dominate with a total of 20 steals led by Bailey and Allison.
The Blackhawks also had 30 rebounds, with Bailey grabbing nearly a third of them. Clark, Hyatt, King, Lesh and Ray captured three apiece, with Jameson, Allison and Franklin each rebounding one. Overall, the team is dominating the court this season, with this game not being an exception.
The North Buncombe Blackhawks are off to a formidable start to the season. They’ve commanded the court and are very satisfying to watch. You can tell that this team is the fruition of much hard work and guidance from Coach Shane Allison and Assistant Coach Ethan Greene, and the season should be pretty interesting to follow. They played at home against Cane Creek on November 22 and have an away game at Valley Springs on the 30th.