Young, Amos lead Hickory past Watauga, 75-65

Young, Amos lead Hickory past Watauga, 75-65
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By David Rogers. February 8, 2019. HICKORY, NC — It was chilly outside and in for Watauga men’s basketball Friday night. Sophomore shooting guard Blane St. Clair poured in 30 points — almost half of it in the fourth quarter — and senior point guard Zach West added 12, but visiting Watauga could not overcome host Hickory’s big early lead, losing 75-65 at David Craft Gym.

COVER IMAGE: Who says basketball is a non-contact sport? All photographic images by David Rogers for Blowing Rock News

The Red Tornadoes led from start to finish in a game that featured the lightning quick, pesky hands of Hickory’s defense that thwarted almost every attempt by the Pioneers to drive the lane. That, and they squandered opportunities at the free throw line, shooting only 61.9% (13-of-21).

Blane St. Clair of Watauga was 8-of-8 from the foul line in recording a game-high 31 points.

For Hickory, Davis Amos tallied seven points in the first quarter to lead the Red Tornadoes to an early, but still manageable 13-7 advantage. In the second period, Amos and teammate Cody Young combined for 16 of Hickory’s 19 points in the period while Watauga was held to 12.

Facing a 13-point deficit at the halftime break, Watauga showed signs of life in the third with St. Clair recording 8 points in the period to lead the Pioneers. The sophomore playmaker added 14 more in the final period, a dozen coming on four consecutive made 3-pointers, but it was not enough to lasso the Red Tornadoes.

Hickory defenders (in white jerseys) had pesky hands and often surrounded Watauga’s drives to the basket.

Amos and Young finished the game with 23 and 21 points, respectively. St. Clair (31) and West (12) were the only other players in double figures.

Watauga (11-10 overall, 6-6 in Northwestern Conference) closes out the 2018-19 regular season at home the next two games, first against top-ranked Freedom (12-0, 21-1) on Tuesday, Feb. 12, then on Senior Night vs. West Caldwell (3-9, 3-17) on Friday, Feb. 15.

LEADING SCORERS

Watauga

  • 31 – Blane St. Clair, including 8-of-8 from the free throw line and four 3-pointers, all in the 4th quarter
  • 12 – Zach West, including 4-of-6 from the foul line and two 3-pointers
  • 7 – Anderson Castl
  • 7 – Jaiden Bond

Hickory

  • 23 – Davis Amos, including 5-of-6 from the charity stripe
  • 21 — Cody Young, with 6-of-7 from the free throw line and three “treys”
  • 9 – Jaylen Harper, 7 points in the second half

About The Author

As Editor and Publisher of Blowing Rock News, David Rogers has chosen a second professional career instead of retirement. For more than 35 years, he served in the financial services industry, principally in institutional equity research. He grew up in the oilfields north of Bakersfield, California and was a high school English major and honors student. From an economically disadvantaged family background, he worked his way through college (on grounds crew and in dining hall, as well as advertising sales for college newspapers), attending Johnston College at the University of Redlands, Claremont McKenna College, and California State University, Bakersfield. Other jobs to pay for college included a Teamsters Union job in South Central Los Angeles, a roustabout in the central California oilfields, and moving sprinkler pipe and hoeing weeds in the cotton fields west of Bakersfield. Rogers' financial services industry career took him from Bakersfield to La Jolla and San Diego, then to Chicago, New York City, San Francisco, Newport Beach and Charlotte before arriving in the High Country in 2000 to take a volunteer position coaching the rugby team at Appalachian State University and write independent stock market research. He spent three years as a senior financial writer for a global financial PR firm with offices in Los Angeles, New York, Shanghai, Beijing, Tel Aviv, and Frankfort (Germany). Rogers is the author of "The 90% Solution: Higher Returns, Less Risk" (2006, John Wiley & Co., New York). He is married to wife Kim (Jenkins Realtors), and shares in the joy provided by her three grown children and five grandchildren.

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