Chadarryl Clay Leads GPS Past Harpeth Hall In D-II Quarterfinals

Bruisers Face Briarcrest On Friday In Rematch From 2011

Friday, February 24, 2012 - by John Hunt

Don't be misled by the final score of Harpeth Hall's basketball game at GPS Friday night.

The defending D-II state champion Bruisers beat the Bears by a 70-56 final in a quarterfinal round game of the state tournament, but the game wasn't nearly that close.

The win was the 25th of the year for GPS and gives the Bruisers a ticket to the D-II Final Four, which will be held at Lipscomb University next Friday and Saturday.

GPS had defeated this same Harpeth Hall team by some nine points two weeks ago, but the rematch proved that the Bruisers just may be the best D-II team in the state and Friday's performance proved it.

"I thought we relaxed a little after we got the big lead, but I thought we played well and hard for the most part," said GPS coach Susan Crownover after the game ended.

"We turned it over too much, but we are a very athletic team and we play into that role.  Turnovers are going to happen.  We got a lot of second looks tonight.  Our games aren't always pretty, but those girls played their tails off.

"All week long, they've talked about next weekend and I kept reminding them we had to win this game before we made any other plans.  They were extremely confident coming into tonight's game.  I know that we'll have to beat two pretty good teams if we hope to repeat," Crownover added.

The first and third quarters were the most productive for the Bruisers as they scored 24 and 26 points, respectively, in those eight-minute spans.

Crownover started substituting freely in the second quarter, but the Bruisers were still able to extend a 24-10 lead after the first quarter to a 39-23 difference at intermission.

GPS came out in the second half and everything was clicking.  That 16-point halftime lead was extended to 65-34 with one quarter remaining and could have been worse, but again, every player on the GPS bench saw extensive playing time as the starters had to watch from the sideline.

The Bears also played most of the players on their roster during the game, but the starters were in for most of the final quarter and outscored the GPS subs by a 22-5 margin to get the final score much more respectable.

Harpeth Hall coach Karen Sutton tried everything in her power to slow down the GPS attack.  Nothing worked.  Despite that fact, she was upbeat and happy with the effort her girls displayed.

"GPS has a really good team with outstanding players and coaches.  Tonight wasn't our best night, but I'm sure GPS had a lot to do with that.  They pushed us out of our comfort zone and forced us to do things we aren't used to doing," Sutton began her post-game comments.

"We only have one senior and we're excited about next year, but I'm really proud of these girls because they played hard the entire time and I really think they thought they had a chance to win until the game ended," she added.

GPS senior Chadarryl Clay, who has already committed to play at Auburn next year and has been nominated for the D-II Miss Basketball again after winning the award last year, finished with 27 points to lead the Bruiser attack.

Clay also grabbed six rebounds and had at least that many steals.  She still feels like she could have played better.

"I don't think this was my best game, although it was one of my best this year," she began.

"We feel like we can beat anyone if we play up to our potential.  We had a lot of energy tonight and we just hope to carry it over until next weekend," Clay added.

While she was the leading scorer for GPS, teammates Jeneh Perry and Simone Busby also had outstanding games.

Perry had 11 points and six rebounds while Busby had 10 points and eight boards.  Tori Kemp, another senior starter, finished with nine points and eight rebounds.

Kennedy Potts scored 18 points to lead Harpeth Hall.  Jordyne Johnson was next with a dozen points for the Bears, who finish their season at 13-15.

Warner Tidwell had an outstanding game with eight points and 10 rebounds.

GPS won the rebound battle, 42-36.

HARPETH HALL  10 13 11  22  --  56

GPS                     24  15  26  5 -- 70

Harpeth Hall (56) -- Johnson 12, Rutherford 1, Nutter 3, Himes 3, Heinz 2, Tidwell 8, K. Potts 18, Apple 3, Hopp 4, R. Potts 2.

GPS (70) -- Clay 27, Busby 10, Perry 11, Bandy 4, Kemp 9, Fernandez, Jackson 1, Farris 6, Sharrock, Spears, Crownover, Morgan, Williams, Harris 2.

3-Point Goals: Harpeth Hall 5 (Johnson 2, Nutter, K. Potts, Apple); GPS 4 (Clay 3, Kemp 1).

(Email John Hunt at nomarathonmoose@comcast.net)



Dalton State Women's Golf Moves Into Top 5 In NAIA National Championship

Dalton State once again showed why they are one of the nation's best, firing the second best round of the day on Thursday, a (+13, 301) to move into fourth place overall at (+76, 940) after the third round of the NAIA Women's Golf National Championship at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens. Fla. #1 SCAD-Savannah (Ga.), (+45, 909), continues to lead the pack, followed by #5 ... (click for more)

ChattanoogaFC Earns Hard-Fought Draw; Fireworks And Jesters This Saturday

The exhilarating match last night kicking off the Blue Ridge Derby against Chattanooga FC and Asheville City SC ended in a tie. Both teams started off the match strong and ready on a beautiful  Wednesday  night  down at Finley Stadium. A passionate crowd gathered to cheer on the boys in blue.   There were several attempts at goal right off for both ... (click for more)

Whitfield Hits Lawsuit Filed By Preservation Group Over Rumors Of Chicken Plant

Walker County Commissioner Shannon Whitfield hit a lawsuit brought by a preservation group over a rumored chicken plant, saying the lawsuit will be very costly for the cash-strapped county and the group is using a smear campaign. The McLemore Cove Preservation Society filed suit seeking to force county officials to provide information on the rumored plant. Commissioner Whitfield ... (click for more)

Motorcyclist Killed After Colliding With Car On Highway 60

A motorcyclist was killed on Highway 60 on Thursday afternoon after colliding with a car.   At approximately  4:30 p.m. , Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office deputies were called to the 5100 block of Highway 60 for the report of a  motor vehicle accident involving a motorcycle vs. car.  According to preliminary reports, the motorcycle ... (click for more)

Refuting Racism

In an opinion piece, 5/18/18, Rev. Josh Woodrow referred to me and my fellow School Board member, Joe Smith, as racists and white supremacists because we spoke out against busing. I have never met or spoken with Rev. Woodrow so he knows nothing about me. The reverend obviously knows nothing about Joe Smith either. Seems one of the reverend’s hobbies is “brewing beer”. Maybe, ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: ‘Don’t Invent, Discover!’

When Randy Boyd stood in front of more than 75 black ministers in Memphis on Tuesday, the ever-dynamic “doer of deeds” told the pastors an exciting story. He talked about “First Things First” of Chattanooga because the Tennessee gubernatorial candidate is totally sold on what Julie Baumgardner and her team have proven keeps families together. Boyd then met with some representatives ... (click for more)