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Foreman leads Indians over 'Toppers in District 1-AAA repeat

Jeff Birchfield • Updated Feb 19, 2019 at 10:43 PM

After dominating the regular season, Marae Foreman and his Dobyns-Bennett teammates took Science Hill's best shot to win their second straight District 1-AAA boys basketball championship.

Led by a 33-point performance by Foreman, the Indians pulled away late to defeat the Hilltoppers 67-53 Tuesday night at Daniel Boone High School. The Indians (28-3) have now swept Big Seven Conference and District 1-AAA titles. They will look to add the Region 1-AAA title starting Saturday when they host Morristown West in the quarterfinal round.

"You have to give the credit where it's due," Dobyns-Bennett coach Chris Poore said. "These kids worked and battled from day one. They're a tough group who have played together a long time. The boys, every single night in the conference, every single night in the tournament, they withstood the test.

"We knew Science Hill was going to fight and scrap until the last second of the game, but our guys fought right with them."

Foreman, the smallest man on the court, made the largest impact. The 5-foot-6 senior guard earned his second straight district tournament MVP award. He knocked down four shots from 3-point range and was 11 of 15 from the free-throw line to get to the 33 points.

He capped off his championship-game performance by throwing an alley-oop pass to Charlie Browder for a two-handed slam dunk in the closing seconds.

"This means the world to us," Foreman said. "We worked every day for this in practice. We worked hard in the offseason and we got this championship. That was the best feeling to finish it like that. Charlie is my man and he brought it home."

Riamello Wadsworth scored 12 points and Browder added 10 in the Dobyns-Bennett victory.

The Hilltoppers (16-16) made a strong showing in the tournament, defeating higher-seeded Tennessee High in the semifinals and leading at the end of three quarters against Dobyns-Bennett.

Jake Matherne led Science Hill with 14 points and eight rebounds. Jordan McLoyd scored nine points, followed by Will Stevens with seven points. Drew Morrison battled inside to collect seven rebounds.

"I'm extremely proud of our kids," Science Hill coach Ken Cutlip said. "I thought our focus and effort was outstanding. Dobyns-Bennett is just an outstanding team and they closed the game better than we did. We were in it, but they're a senior-led ball club and I felt like their seniors stepped up and made plays."

Dobyns-Bennett led 20-17 at the end of the first quarter after Keynan Cutlip's game-tying, half-court shot was ruled after the buzzer. The Indians stretched the lead to 10 points in the second quarter before taking a 41-34 lead into halftime.

Science Hill scored the first nine points of the third quarter, taking the lead on a Matherne hook shot before Browder responded on the other end. Foreman put D-B ahead early in the fourth. After a tying basket by the Hilltoppers' Hunter Phillips, Wadsworth scored on an old-fashioned, 3-point play and the Indians led the rest of the way.

Daniel Boone 85, Tennessee High 81

The host Trailblazers (13-13) scored the first 10 points of the fourth quarter and held on to defeat the Vikings (23-9), despite a 34-point effort by Christian Webb.

Chad Heglar led Boone with 21 points, followed by Cade Norris with 20. In a balanced attack, Marshall Golden tallied 18 and Jared Adkins added 14. Judah Hilton also reached double figures with 10.

"I thought we were completely unselfish and that's how we've got to play," Daniel Boone coach Chris Brown said. "When we're playing well, we're moving the ball and bodies are moving. That's a credit to our guys for just buying in."

Daniel Boone's strong finish came after a slow start.

Tennessee High scored the first seven points of the game, only to see the 'Blazers battle back and take the lead early in the second quarter. The teams continued to go back and forth the rest of the first half, with a late 3-pointer by Brandon Brown giving the Vikings the 36-35 halftime lead.

After matching each other in the third quarter with 20 points, the 'Blazers scored the first 10 of the final period to open up a 65-56 lead. Tennessee High closed within five points on multiple occasions, only to see Daniel Boone extend its lead.

Tennessee High pulled within three (82-79) on an old-fashioned 3-point play by Webb before Adkins and Hilton closed out the game on the free-throw line.

"I thought that's the kind of energy we're capable of," Brown said. "We used some of our advantages speed-wise. I told Cade Norris before the game I wanted 10 shots from him. He's just continues to develop and I thought Judah Hilton did a good job of attacking the basket."

Cole McBrayer scored 14 points and Brandon Brown netted 10 for the Vikings. Cade Mitchell and Nolan Wishon each ended with eight.

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