Inside over outside leads to sweep for 80-84 Tomcats

ASHLAND, Ky. – For the second night in a row, Ashland’s 1980-84 team’s 1-2 punch of Jeff Tipton and Chuck Cantrell was devastating.

They combined for 47 points and the 80-84 Tomcats became the first team in the Tomcat Shootout to sweep a decade rival in two games, swamping the 85-89 Tomcats 114-93 Saturday night.

They built a 24-point lead in the first half because the 85-89 Tomcats’ strategy of shooting from behind the 3-point line backfired. They were a woeful 4-for-31 behind the arc and it led to a lopsided loss.

Jeff Tipton (above) and Chuck Cantrell shared the MVP award.

“We thought eventually something was going to start falling,” said 85-89 coach Craynor Slone. “But they never did. We’re better shooters than we showed.”

Cantrell struggled from the field too but he made 15 of 21 free throws on the way to a game-high 25 points with 12 rebounds. Tipton collected 22 points and 13 rebounds.

“Glad those guys are on my team,” said 80-84 coach Ernie Simpson. “But we had a lot of good performances. When you score 114 points, how can you not be pleased?”

Tipton and Cantrell shared the MVP award.

Charlie Scott, who dressed up like Grandma in the opening game, played it straight this time and scored 12 points on 6-of-7 shooting. Doug Smith lit it up for 21 points and Jon Webb added 10 points and six assists.

Like in the first game, the 80-84 Tomcats built a big first quarter lead. They were up 31-20 and then outscored the 85-89 Tomcats 28-19 in the second quarter for a 59-39 lead.

“We shot ourselves out of it,” said Rece Ryan, who scored 16 but missed all eight of his 3-point attempts. Jason Williams, who had 17 points, was also 0-for-8 behind the arc.

“I could have sworn those shots were right on target,” Ryan said. “I don’t know what happened. I’ve never missed that many shots.”

Meanwhile, with the 3-point game floundering, the big 80-84 team was pulling down rebound after rebound.

The third quarter featured both teams on target and the fans loved it. They both scored 31 points.

“The defense was missing to start the third quarter for both of us,” Simpson said. “Did either one of us miss a shot? It looked like we were on the AAU circuit.”

Brothers Greg and Shawn Conley got into a minor altercation after colliding under the basket. The referees called a charge on Shawn and Greg began clapping in his face. The brothers each got in a shove before their father Herb was stepping between them on the floor. He was out there faster than Usian Bolt.

Let’s just say order was restored rather quickly.

It was reminiscent of when the boys were younger going at each other, in uniform, on the sidelines at Putnam Stadium as Herb coached the Tomcats to another football victory.

Greg scored nine points and Shawn had seven while guarding each other most of the game.

For the second game in a row, Dew Foley led the 85-89 Tomcats. He scored 22 and Mark Salyers added 12 points. The 85-89 Tomcats were able to launch 98 shots but they made only 35.

“They didn’t want to have anything to do with coming inside,” Tipton said.

And when they shot outside, it didn’t work.

“You know, I wasn’t disappointed with those shots we took,” Slone said. “Rece hits from there at least half the time in practice and Jason is a pure shooter. Those guys were 0-for-16? I would never have believed it.”

1985-89 ASHLAND (93) – Ryan 5-16 6-8 16, Johnson 3-11 0-0 8, Williams 6-22 5-6 17, Foley 8-10 5-6 22, Avila 2-4 0-0 4, Salyers 5-13 2-3 12, Conley 3-8 0-0 6, Gifford 2-3 0-0 4, McCallister 0-3 0-0 0, McKenzie 1-8 1-1 3. FG: 35-98. FT: 9-25. 3FG: 4-31 (Ryan 0-8, Johnson 2-7, Williams 0-8, Foley 1-1, Avila 0-2, Salyers 0-1, Conley 1-2, Gifford 0-1, McKenzie 0-1). Rebounds: 43 (Ryan 5, Johnson 5, Williams 5, Foley 8, Avila 9, Salyers 4, Conley 1, Gifford 3, McCallister 3). Assists: 22 (Ryan 5, Johnson 1, Williams 3, Foley 2, Avila 2, Salyers 3, Conley 5, McKenzie 1). PF: 29. Turnovers: 18.

1980-84 ASHLAND (114) – Webb 5-11 0-0 10, Smith 7-13 5-5 21, Tipton 10-16 2-5 22, McCauley 4-10 1-5 9, Cantrell 5-15 15-21 25, Crank 3-4 0-0 6, Scott 6-7 0-0 12, Stewart 1-2 0-0 2, Conley 3-3 1-1 7, Farrow 0-2 0-2 0, Daniels 0-0 0-0 0. FG: 44-83. FT: 24-39. 3FG: 2-5 (Smith 2-3, Cantrell 0-2). Rebounds: 53 (Webb 4, Smith 4, Tipton 13, McCauley 9, Cantrell 12, Crank 5, Scott 5, Conley 1). Assists: 20 (Webb 6, Smith 3, Tipton 2, McCauley 2, Cantrell 1, Crank 1, Scott 2, Stewart 2, Farrow 1). PF: 16. Turnovers: 21.

1985-89 ASHLAND         20         19         30         24      –       93

1980-84 ASHLAND         31         28         31         24      –      114


By Mark Maynard

Managing editor of Kentucky Today, the digital newspaper of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, since July 2017. Worked 42 years for The Daily Independent in Ashland, Kentucky, the last 12 as managing editor and editor and the previous 30 before that in the sports department, including 17 years as sports editor. I have been in the business since 1975 with more than 75 writing awards from the Kentucky Press Association. I have also have written eight books, used to run fast but now look more like I have a piano on my back. President of Amy For Africa, a faith-based Christian ministry serving Uganda. I'm a husband to Beth and father to Stephen and Sally, grandfather to Brooks and human to Opie!

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