Hot-shooting Sevier County’s girls knocked off second-seeded Cocke County, 51-44, Friday night in the semifinals of the District 2-AAA Tournament at Isenburg-Siler Gymnasium.
The Bearettes took the lead late in the first half and held it the rest of the way in advancing to the championship game and earning the right to host a first-round region game next Friday.
Amanda Clabo pumped in 16 points, and Mackenna Loveday was right behind with 15 as Sevier County improved to 17-11 for the season.
Camryn Halcomb tossed in 13 for the Lady Red, now 15-12. Sydney Clevenger added nine and Jaylen Cofield eight for Cocke County.
The Bearettes gunned in 18-of-33 from the floor for 54.5 percent and made 2-6 three-point attempts.
Cocke County managed just 30.8 percent on 12-of-39. The Lady Red made 2-of-11 3-pointers. The losers won the rebound battle 29-28.
After trailing early in the game, the Lady Red scored six straight to grab the upper hand at 9-4. Clabo had a pair of baskets that got Sevier County within 11-8 at the first rest stop.
Clevenger gunned in a trey to open the second stanza to give Cocke County a 14-8 lead, but the Lady Red went the rest of the half (6:36) and the first 6:35 of the third quarter without a basket. But they stayed in it with free throws.
Emma Huskey scored for the Bearettes, but Halcomb cashed in two charity tosses for the Lady Red and it was still a six-point game at 16-10.
That’s when the Bearettes took control. Haley Williams put in a basket and Clabo grabbed a rebound and went coast-to-coast for a layup. Williams tied it with a 15-foot jumper before Loveday scored inside to put Sevier County in front.
Heavan Baxter tied the game by sinking two free throws but Loveday’s three with 20 seconds left in the half gave the Bearettes a 21-18 margin at intermission.
Loveday and Shilah Huskey had baskets to put Sevier County up 25-18 before Halcomb made a pair of foul shots. Clabo knocked in a short jump shot and Loveday converted a conventional there-point play and it was 30-20.
However, Cofield and Paige Neithammer hit free throws and Haley Moore made a bucket to get Cocke County within 30-24 at the final break.
Williams scored for the Bearettes but Halcomb grabbed a rebound and put it back in and then scored another basket to chop the lead down to four.
From there it was mainly free throws as the winners hit 10 in a row in the period before winding up 15 of 20 over the final eight minutes.
Cofield hit two before Gracie Gregg and Baxter hit one each and the Lady Red was down 38-32 with 3:45 left.
But, Whaley scored inside, Natali Shultz made two free throws and then Loveday added two more and it was 44-32. Halcomb and Neithammer had field goals for the losers but the Bearettes continued to hit just enough free throws to stay out in front.