MURFREESBORO — The Station Camp High School boys basketball team might have been making its first BlueCross Basketball Championships appearance, but the Bison felt right at home inside MTSU’s Murphy Center.
A large portion of Station Camp’s student body made the trek here to show support.
“Not really (surprised),” senior Sawyer Taylor said after Station Camp’s 78-68 quarterfinal win over David Crockett. “Coach (Seth) Massey kept telling us that like 700 students were going to be there. Plus, it’s during the school day, so a lot of them were ready just to get out of school.”
Station Camp, which has an enrollment of approximately 1,500, had just 270 students show up to school on Thursday.
“Maybe some of them just didn’t go to school,” junior Chase Freeman added. “But that’s still crazy.”
Family tradition: Fans familiar with last year’s BlueCross Basketball Championships will probably remember the name Lawson — as in brothers Dedric and K.J. Lawson, who helped lead Hamilton High School to a Class AAA state title.
And while Dedric and K.J. have moved on to play at the University of Memphis, their little brother, Memphis East’s Chandler Lawson, made his presence felt Wednesday.
Chandler Lawson scored 11 points on 5-of-8 shooting in the Mustangs’ 70-61 win over Hillsboro. The 6-foot-9 freshman also tallied four rebounds, two assists and two blocked shots in his state tournament debut.
Breaking through: Wednesday marked Nashville Christian’s second trip to the state tournament in program history. Just like the school’s first trip, though, it ended with an opening-round loss.
Although the Eagles were ousted by Booker T. Washington, this season was the first time they advanced to the state tournament since 1981.
The second-longest state tournament drought ended this year when Cordova advanced to the Class AAA quarterfinals for the first time since 2002.
Middle Tennessee Christian, meanwhile, will make its first-ever state tournament appearance when the Cougars take on Mitchell in Thursday’s 10 a.m. quarterfinal.
Mr. Basketball: Only one Mr. Basketball winner — Memphis East’s Alex Lomax — will play in the BlueCross Basketball Championships.
Lomax, who beat out Oak Ridge’s Tee Higgins and Arlington’s Nathan Hoover for Class AAA Mr. Basketball honors, scored 12 points in Wednesday’s quarterfinal win.
Class A Mr. Basketball finalist Clay County’s Tyreke Key of Clay County will be on display at 11:30 a.m. Thursday when the Bulldogs take on Hampton.