Seven area teams have set their sights on the BlueCross Spring Fling.
The TSSAA’s five-sport state championship chase has been going on since 1994. It started in Chattanooga, mysteriously moved to Memphis for a few years, and then finally found a home in Murfreesboro — where it has been held since 2006.
North Greene was the only area baseball team earning its way to The Boro, reaching the Class A state tournament.
In softball, Daniel Boone made it in Class AAA while University High represents the area in Class A. In soccer, Science Hill earned a Class AAA berth and Greeneville made the field in Class A-AA. And in team tennis, Unicoi County’s boys and Dobyns-Bennett’s girls made it to the final four.
Here’s a sport-by-sport look at what’s on the schedule for this week’s BlueCross Spring Fling:
Action gets under way Tuesday with games at Seigel and Oakland (Class AAA), Blackman and Smyrna (Class AA) along with Riverdale and Middle Tennessee Christian (Class A).
All tournaments will play down to onegame championships Friday at Middle Tennessee State University’s Reece Smith Field. The Class A final is at noon (EDT), Class AA at 3 p.m. and Class AAA at 6 p.m.
North Greene (27-7) will have its work cut out. Unaka has lost 14 straight state tournament games as the area’s Class A representative.
The Huskies will open up against Decatur County (27-5) at 5 p.m.
All games will be played at the Murfreesboro Sports Complex and McKnight Fields, beginning Tuesday.
Championship games are set for Friday, with if-necessary contests on the slate for Saturday.
There are no easy games at this level, but Daniel Boone (45-4) gets a serious test right off the bat with Soddy-Daisy (42-4) in a game scheduled for 6 p.m.
Soddy has won seven Class AAA state titles (1991, 1999-2000, 2003, 2006-07 and 2010) while finishing runner-up in 2004-05 and last year. That’s nine top-two finishes in 13 years.
As for University High, its first draw was equally daunting. The Lady Junior Bucs (31-11) got paired against defending Class A state champion Decatur County (40-5). They will play at approximately 7:30 p.m.
The Richard Siegel Soccer Complex will house all games with title matches set for Friday at 5:30 p.m. (Class A-AA) and 8 o’clock (Class AAA).
Science Hill (16-5-1) got a tough draw against Brentwood, which boasts a record of 16-1-2. Brentwood won titles in 1995, 2005 and 2008. The contest will be played at 8 p.m. Tuesday.
Greeneville (15-5-1) got the exact same draw as last year, pairing up against Memphis Kingsbury (13-4-3) at 8 p.m. Tuesday. Kingsbury won 2-1 last year and reached the state finals.
All of the matches will be played at Old Fort Park, with championships set for Wednesday at 10 a.m. (Class AAA and A-AA girls) and 12:30 p.m. (Class AAA and A-AA boys).
Unicoi County’s boys, who knocked off defending state champion Christian Academy of Knoxville in Friday’s sectional, will match up against Christ Presbyterian Academy on Tuesday at noon in the semifinals. The other semifinal matches Collegedale against Huntingdon.
In Class AAA girls, Dobyns-Bennett will meet Murfreesboro Siegel at 10 a.m. Tuesday.
Individual tennis tournaments begin Thursday. Science Hill’s Michael Chen drew Hendersonville’s Matthew Heinrich in the quarterfinals of boys singles. However, Chen would likely have to face Brentwood Ravenwood’s Sean Karl in the semifinals. Karl beat Chen 6-0, 6-0 in last year’s title match.
TRACK AND FIELD
All action will be held at the MiddleTennesseeStateUniversity track.
The first portion of this event is the decathlon, where Sullivan East’s Clifford Hawkins will participate today. Action gets under way at 11 a.m.
The regular track meet starts Wednesday with the Class AAA girls pole vault and the Class A-AA girls 3,200-meter run. The full girls event is set for Thursday while the boys championships will be decided Friday.