Eight Red Raider Football Players Tabbed for All-Region Honors

CCEight members of the Coffee County Red Raider football team were named to the Region 2-6A All-Region team which was announced on Saturday morning’s Coffee Coaches Show. Five Red Raiders were selected to the 1st team, while 3 players from Coffee County received honorable mention honors.
Sophomore QB Alontae Taylor headlines the Raider selections. Taylor led Coffee County in total offense as he accounted for more than 2,300 yards on the season. Junior Tyrese McGee was also selected. McGee was the 2nd leading receiver and the 3rd leading rusher for Coffee County and accounted for more than 600 yards of offense and 5 touchdowns. Senior fullback/linebacker Mill Harner was also honored as he rushed for nearly 800 yards and 8 touchdowns on the season for the Red Raiders. Senior lineman Jacoby Lowe and freshman lineman Nathaniel Horne were also recognized for their outstanding play. Junior offensive lineman Silas Vaughn, senior cornerback Boone Riddle and freshman lineman Elijah Norton received honorable mention to the squad as chosen by the Region 2-6A coaches.

Saros Makes NHL Debut, Preds Fall to Sabres

Pete Weber’s postgame report

Nashville Predators center Mike Fisher

Nashville Predators center Mike Fisher

Juuse Saros stopped 20 shots in his NHL debut, but it wasn’t enough as the Buffalo Sabres defeated the Nashville Predators by a 4-1 final on Saturday night at Bridgestone Arena.

Buffalo scored four unanswered to finish the contest, including two goals on a five-minute power play in the second period after Nashville forward Viktor Arvidsson was penalized for cross checking.

“It was tough; it was a low-event game, but we’re holding a 1-0 lead at that point and there wasn’t a lot going on for them up until that,” Predators Head Coach Peter Laviolette said of the Buffalo power-play chance. “I don’t think [Arvidsson] had any bad intentions, he just ran into somebody and the stick got caught a little bit high, but just a tough turn of events.”

The loss was just the second regulation defeat for Nashville on home ice this season, pushing their overall record to 12-7-4 on the season.

Mike Fisher opened the scoring with his third goal in as many games. Fisher’s tally on the power play at 11:42 of the first period was his 250th in the NHL and came courtesy of a slick James Neal feed off the draw to the right of goaltender Chad Johnson.

The 1-0 score held through a majority of the middle stanza until the Sabres received the five-minute power-play chance. Jamie McGinn and Sam Reinhart scored for Buffalo with the man advantage to give Buffalo a 2-1 lead headed into the intermission.

“We were playing a pretty solid game, and then we took the five-minute major; that kind of deflated us,” forward Eric Nystrom said. “It was an opportunity for us to keep the momentum with a big kill, but they scored two goals on that five-minute major. It kind of took the wind right out of our sails.”

Reinhart added his second of the night early in the third and Ryan O’Reilly added an empty netter to seal the victory for Buffalo.

A bright spot on the evening was the play of Saros, who was just recalled earlier in the day from Milwaukee of the AHL. Selected 99th overall by Nashville in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, Saros fought off a number of shots throughout the evening, masking whatever nerves he may have been feeling.

“I had a couple shots at the beginning that got me going,” Saros said. “I felt pretty good with the pace and everything, and it’s nice to get the first game down.”

“He was good; he seemed like everything was really in control,” Laviolette said of Saros. “He had a couple of tough shots early – there were a couple shots that came in real funny and hard and he was able to make those saves, and then I thought he really settled into it after that.”

The Predators will remain at home to host the Arizona Coyotes on Tuesday night, and after playing six games in a nine-day stretch, Laviolette is hoping some rest will help lead to a notch in the win column.

“I thought we could’ve had more gas… the energy, maybe the second period had something to do with that,” Laviolette said. “The road trip lasted until tonight, whatever it is – it was a long trip and I’m not making any excuses, but I think we can play at a higher tempo. I think that’s when we’re at our best, and I think we had more to push in that area tonight.”

Predators Fall in Overtime to Philadelphia

Preds Logo2Philadelphia Flyers captain Claude Giroux could have a future in coaching. He certainly knows how to draw up a winning play.

Giroux had the idea and defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere executed it, scoring a power-play goal with 52.0 seconds remaining in overtime to give the Flyers a 3-2 win against the Nashville Predators at Wells Fargo Center on Friday.

The game turned when the Predators were called for having too many men on the ice at 2:40 of overtime. The Flyers called a timeout halfway through the advantage and that’s when Giroux commandeered the dry-erase board.

“[Assistant coach] Joey [Mullen] is not on the bench but he prepares the guys really well,” Flyers coach Dave Hakstol said. “That’s all the players and Joey. They did a great job.”

Coming out of the timeout Jakub Voracek carried the puck into the Nashville zone and curled to the point on the right side. He sent it to Gostisbehere in the center of the zone inside the blue line and he moved it to Giroux at the left dot. Gostisbehere cut down the middle and Giroux found him above the hash marks. His one-timer went through a Wayne Simmonds screen and past Rinne.

“We’re just trying to get some traffic, move around, make that forward not really see what’s going on behind him,” Giroux said. “Just trying to get some guys open. Whether it was [Gostisbehere or Voracek] open, I was going to try to make that pass. It worked so it’s good.”

Colin McDonald and Michael Del Zotto also scored for the Flyers (8-10-5) and Giroux had two assists.

It was a play almost exactly the same as the one Gostisbehere scored on in overtime Monday to defeat the Carolina Hurricanes.

“It was actually the same exact play that we were trying the first time around [on the power play against the Predators], but we cleaned some things up and we were a little more patient this time I think,” Gostisbehere said. “It was a great play by [Giroux] to draw that up and great entry by Jake and [Simmonds] got [Rinne’s] eyes.”

The goal was Gostisbehere’s third in seven games and second in overtime. He was recalled from Lehigh Valley of the American Hockey League on Nov. 14 to replace defenseman Mark Streit, who is expected to miss another month recovering from surgery to repair a detached pubic plate. But Gostisbehere’s play could force the Flyers into some tough decisions when Streit returns.

“It’s a fun ride right now and I don’t have any plans of getting off it,” Gostisbehere said. “I’ve never scored that many [overtime] winners in my life so it’s a surreal moment. But I’m going to keep going and I’m looking forward to New York [Rangers on Saturday].”

Goalie Michal Neuvirth made 33 saves, including a spectacular post-to-post stop on the Predators’ Eric Nystrom late in the second period with the game tied 1-1. Nystrom had an open net from the left slot on the rebound of Mike Fisher’s shot off a shorthanded rush, but Neuvirth leapt across and did the splits to stop Nystrom with 4:50 remaining.

Filip Forsberg had a goal and an assist, and Fisher scored for the Predators (12-6-4). Goaltender Pekka Rinne, who played his 400th NHL game, made 33 saves.

The Predators, in the final game of a five-game road trip (1-3-1), forced overtime when Fisher jumped into the crease and banged in the rebound of a Forsberg shot with 20.0 seconds remaining in the third period.

But the Predators were unable to carry that momentum into overtime.

“It was a big goal for us at the time,” Predators coach Peter Laviolette said. “We were pressing at the end. Had some chances. [Neuvirth] made some good saves. … Was good to get the extra goal and get to overtime, get the point.”

The Flyers took a 2-1 lead at 4:57 of the third on McDonald’s first goal of the season. Scott Laughton held the puck along the left wing boards in the Predators end and got it to defenseman Evgeny Medvedev at the point. His shot hit McDonald in front, and he fought off Nystrom to get to the rebound and slide it past Rinne.

Forsberg opened the scoring 1:44 into the game with his first goal in 17 games, one-timing a Mike Ribeiro pass into the slot past Neuvirth. It was Forsberg’s fourth goal of the season; he was tied for second among rookies last season with 26 goals. Against the Flyers, he had four shots on goal and three that missed the net, including a shot off the crossbar with the game tied late in the second period.

“I think it was only a matter of time,” Laviolette said. “He had lots of chances and looks in New York; Thought he played a real strong game versus the Rangers [on Monday]. Tonight he was shooting the puck well also. Was good for him to have a good first shift, they were humming in the offensive zone and were able to generate.”

The Flyers tied it at 4:00 of the first on Del Zotto’s first goal of the season. It was their first even-strength goal since the third period Nov. 17 against the Los Angeles Kings, a span of 261 minutes, 58 seconds.

It was the first time six games that the Flyers scored more than one 5-on-5 goal in a game. The Flyers entered Friday 30th in the League at 1.73 goals per game.

Nashville forward Gabriel Bourque missed the final two periods because of an upper-body injury.

The Predators return to Nashville on Saturday night for a 7 PM contest with Buffalo.  Thunder Radio will bring you that broadcast on the Fifth Third Bank/Nashville Predators Radio Network.

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CHS Wrestlers Battle in Season Opening Matches at Beech

CHS wrestler Owen Teague

CHS wrestler Owen Teague

The CHS Wrestling team opened their season with a trio of matches in Hendersonville at Beech High School. Even though the Raiders did not get a team match win in the 3 contests, several Raider wrestlers had good days in individual matches. The team highlight of the day was 3 pinfall wins by Owen Teague in the 145 pound weight class.
Against Cookeville, Teague got a pin in 1:20 which was his longest match of the evening. In the 285 pound weight class, Dustin Seals got a pin and Josh Tobitt scored a pin at 195 pounds. Raider grappler Jacob Rice got a 9 to 3 decision win at 170 while James Lynn suffered an 8 to 7 decision loss at 152 to earn 3 team points.
Against Clarksville Northwest, Teague got a pinfall win in 69 seconds at 145 pounds. James Lynn bounced back for a pinfall win at 152 pounds and William Green won a 7 to 2 decision at 126 pounds.

Against the home standing Beech Buccaneers, Teague completed the hat trick in 15 seconds with a pinfall win. Thomas Lawrence scored a pinfall win at 160 pounds and Josh Tobitt scored a forfeit win wrestling at 195.
The wrestlers travel to Oakland on Thursday, December 3rd for a tri-match with Oakland and Page. Matches will begin at 6 PM. Coach Roger Barlow will be a guest on the Coffee Coaches Show on Saturday to talk about the Raiders’ performance.

CHS Softball to Host December Golf Tournament

long johnsThe Coffee County CHS Lady Raider softball team is hosting the 1st Annual “Long John Open” golf tournament on Saturday, December 12th at Willowbrook. Cost for the 4 man scramble tournament is $200 per team. The event tees off at 10 AM and there will be prizes awarded for the Best and Worst Dressed participants. Teams can receive an extra $25 off (per team) if they bring a lightly used coat to be donated for charity. $25 will also enter participants in contests for the longest drive, longest putt, mulligans, throws, red tree drives and a drawing for golf bags. 1st and 2nd Place flights will be paid and hot chocolate will be served on the course. For more information, contact WIllowbrook Golf Club or CHS softball coach Steve Wilder at 731-445-4897

CCMS Cheerleaders to Host Cheer Clinic

cheerleading 3Do you have a child that loves to cheer or would like to find out? If so, the Coffee County Middle School Cheerleaders have the perfect event for you on Friday, December 4th.  The CCMS Cheerleaders will be holding a clinic for kids Pre-K thru 6th grade.  Campers will learn a basketball chant and dance routine that they will perform at a middle school game!  Cost for the camp is $25.  The camp will run from 4 PM to 6 PM on Friday, Dec 4th @CCMS.  Campers will be invited to the CCMS game on Thursday, December 10th to perform their routine at the game!  Forms are available at the county elementary schools, Tennessee Gymnastics, Pathway Gymnastics, and at CCMS.

Predators End Scoreless Streak, Beat Buffalo on Wednesday

Pete Weber’s Postgame Report


Nashville Predators goalie Carter Hutton

Nashville Predators goalie Carter Hutton

Mike Fisher and the Nashville Predators were in the midst of a franchise-record scoring drought but felt probability was in their favor.

Fisher ended the Predators’ goalless skid at 227:39 and Nashville scored three times in 13 minutes during a 3-2 win over the Buffalo Sabres on Wednesday night.

“We were due for bounces and we got a few,” Fisher said. “Luckily it was enough ’cause they were coming pretty hard at the end.”

Craig Smith and Cody Hodgson also scored, while Carter Hutton made 30 saves to help Nashville snap a three-game losing streak.

“We weren’t going to get shut out the rest of the year,” coach Peter Laviolette said. “That would be impossible, right? They do the right things, they put the puck at the net. It’s going to go in.”

The Predators were outscored 11-0 over the first three games of this five-game trip, which ends Friday in Philadelphia. They hadn’t scored since the second period of a 3-2 win over the Anaheim Ducks on Nov. 17.

“We had a lot of confidence in this room,” Hutton said. “We’re not too far removed from scoring seven in a couple games. So at the same time we knew if we stuck to what worked, it would come.”

Evander Kane and Jack Eichel scored for the Sabres.

The loss was Buffalo’s sixth straight, and they’ve only scored seven goals and collected two points in that time.

Over the first two periods, Buffalo outshot Nashville 25-11 but trailed 3-0.

“There’s a lot in the game that’s good,” Sabres coach Dan Bylsma said. “There’s nothing good about getting down 3-0 and not winning the hockey game, but some pretty good stuff from our lines.”

Linus Ullmark allowed three goals on eight shots for Buffalo and was then replaced by Chad Johnson. Johnson stopped all 12 shots he faced.

The Predators scored on their first true spell of possession in the Sabres’ end. Fisher’s busy work off the puck got him to a rebound ahead of Jack McCabe and he scored with 6:08 left in the period.

It took just 55 seconds of second-period play for Smith to build Nashville’s lead, taking advantage of a poorly-positioned Ullmark with a high wrister.

The third goal started when Calle Jarnkrok lunged to corral a Sabres clearing attempt at the blue line and fired a wild shot toward the net. Gabriel Bourque controlled the rebound and found former Sabres forward Hodgson streaking across the slot for an easy goal.

“Bourque made a great play, a really sharp pass,” Hodgson said. “I just had to tap it in.”

Brian Gionta collected an ambitious pass up the right boards from Cody Franson and forced Hutton into an early blocker save as Buffalo recorded up the first eight shots on goal.

Hutton dodged trouble when Jack Eichel’s long shot through traffic beat him five-hole but trickled off the left post.

Kane pulled the Sabres to within two late in the second. Nashville allowed the left wing to gain the zone and move into the center of the ice, where he beat Hutton with a glove-side wrist shot.

Marcus Foligno was called for two penalties early in the third period, the second for interfering with Hutton on a 1-on-1 opportunity that went wide. When Foligno emerged from the box, he found himself in a race with Hutton for a loose puck, and his dive flipped the goaltender in the air.

“I just tried to elevate it and he caught my legs and sent me for the old flip-a-rooskie,” Hutton said. “I’ve got to work on my landing, that’s for sure.”

Eichel then fired a cross-crease pass from Ryan O’Reilly off Hutton and into the goal with 1:19 left, but Buffalo couldn’t find the equalizer with the extra attacker.

CHS Basketball Splits with Huntland on Tuesday Night

Aerial Williams(Photo by Jay Bailey - Manchester Times)

Aerial Williams(Photo by Jay Bailey – Manchester Times)

The 3rd quarter proved to be the deciding period on Tuesday night as the Raider and Lady Raider basketball teams finished the “Pre-Thanksgiving” portion of their season in Huntland. In the girls game, Coffee County turned a 2 point halftime deficit into an 8 point lead as the Lady Raiders got a 48 to 44 win. Coffee County forced 7 Huntland turnovers in the quarter and stretched their lead to 11 points early in the 4th quarter. Huntland made a run late, but Coffee County kept their poise and hit their free throws down the stretch to even their season record at 1 and 1. Holli Smithson and Aerial Williams led the Lady Raiders in scoring with 10 points each. Freshman Abby Morgan finished with 7 points. For her strong post play, Williams was named the Gateway Tire and Service Center Player of the Game.

LeAundre Graham(Photo by Jay Bailey - Manchester Times)

LeAundre Graham(Photo by Jay Bailey – Manchester Times)

The Red Raiders saw turnovers and missed shots in their 3rd quarter contribute to their first loss of the year 65 to 54 to the Hornets. After a back and forth first half, the Red Raiders saw their 2 point deficit at the half balloon to 17 points at the end of the 3rd period. Coffee County was led in scoring by LeAundre Graham who had 9 points to earn Gateway Tire and Service Center Player of the Game honors. Kohl Young finished with 8 points and Caleb McKenzie came off the bench to net 7 points.
Coffee County will return to the court on Monday, November 30 when they travel to Fayetteville to take on the Tigers of Fayetteville High. Tipoff is set for 6 PM and Thunder Radio will bring you the call beginning with the Powers Storage/Char-El Apartments Pregame Show at 5:50. Coffee County returns home on Tuesday night as they play host to Grundy County.

Westwood Splits Conference Meetings with Liberty on Monday

Westwood Lady Rocket Ashley Starks

Westwood Lady Rocket Ashley Starks

The Westwood Rockets and Lady Rockets split a conference doubleheader on Monday night in Shelbyville to Duck River Valley Conference rival Liberty. In the girls game, Westwood held Liberty to single baskets in the 1st and 3rd quarters as the Lady Rockets notched the 34 to 22 conference win. The Lady Rockets got 15 points from Ashley Starks and 8 points from Morgan Jones as they improved their conference leading record to 12 and 2.


Westwood's Collin Ward

Westwood’s Collin Ward

The Rockets had zero answers for Liberty post player Keion Johnson as he netted 23 points in the Patriots 43 to 21 win over Westwood. The Liberty win avenged an earlier loss at Westwood as the 2 rivals split their 2 meetings this season. Westwood was held scoreless in the 1st quarter as they dug themselves a 14 to 0 hole after one period. Roderic Brinkley and Collin Ward led the Rockets in scoring with 6 points apiece.
The Rockets return to the court on Saturday as they travel to Morrison for a 4 PM game. The Lady Rockets and Rockets return to conference play on Monday night when they travel to Huntland. That matchup begins at 6 PM.

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