Siegel boys remain unbeaten, advance to district title

Siegel boys remain unbeaten, advance to district title

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Siegel boys remain unbeaten, advance to district title

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MURFREESBORO

The pressure of an undefeated season nearly got to Siegel until the pressure of the Stars turned the game around.

A two-point lead 10 minutes into Saturday’s District 7-AAA Tournament semifinal turned into a 80-66 victory against visiting Smyrna as the second-ranked Stars pushed their record to 27-0 and moved on to Tuesday night’s title game.

The Stars will face Blackman in the championship, while Smyrna will play La Vergne in the consolation game. All four teams are on to next week’s Region 4-AAA Tournament.

Siegel, which won its two meetings against Smyrna (13-15) this season by an average of 34.5 points per game, had a two-point lead at the end of the first quarter and again two minutes into the second before taking control of the game.

The first quarter featured six ties and 11 lead changes — the 11th lead change being the last one of the day.

Back-to-back baskets by Dominique Gooch in the final 13 seconds — one on a steal — gave Siegel a 21-19 lead as the first quarter ended.

Ryan Jones’ personal run continued into the second quarter. After scoring 10 of the team’s first 17 points, he added nine in the next eight minutes to help the Stars post a 42-30 halftime lead. He finished with 28 points.

From the steal that led to Gooch’s go-ahead bucket to halftime, the Stars got nine points off of five Smyrna turnovers.

Charles Clark (18), Dominique Gooch (17) and Aden Burton (10) also scored in double figures for Siegel.

Smyrna kept pace after losing the lead at the end of the first quarter. The Bulldogs shot 5-of-8 from the field in the second quarter, even countering Jones’ 5-0 run to open the second with a 5-0 run from Jaylen Johnson. But Siegel followed by hitting 7-of-12 from the field over the next 5:30 for the 12-point halftime advantage.

The Stars pushed the lead to 20 with three minutes left in the third before Smyrna closed the gap to 11 with a 13-4 run to end the third quarter (59-48). The Bulldogs again got it to 11 (66-55) three minutes into the fourth quarter, but did not get any closer.

Smyrna was led by Johnson’s 26 points and Gonda Ameri added 15.

Siegel is on to its eighth district tournament title game in program history. The Stars are 4-3 in league title games, and have advance to the TSSAA Class AAA tournament six of the seven times they have reached this game.

The Bulldogs have advanced to their first region tourney since 2011.

Siegel 80, Smyrna 66

Sm 19 11 18 18 — 66

Si 21 21 17 21 — 80

Sm-Williams 3, Vanderbilt 1, Jaylen Johnson 26, Haralson 4, Mulligan 9, Repress 2, Glover 4, Gonda Ameri 15, Ferrell 2.

Si-Normand 2, Charles Clark 18, Dominique Gooch 17, Ryan Jones 28, Lyons 3, McGee 2, Aden Burton 10.

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