River Ridge boys, girls advance to Region 7AAAA semis
by Emily Horos
ehoros@cherokeetribune.com
February 18, 2014 04:00 AM | 1031 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The River Ridge boys easily advanced to the Region 7AAAA semifinals at Cass on Monday with a 69-43 victory over Heritage in the quarterfinals.

The Knights outscored their opponent 25-10 in the first quarter and extended the lead to 42-20 by the end of the first half before cruising for the victory.

River Ridge coach Matt Bohon said he his team didn't show any rust after taking a long break from competition because of the weather.

"We started strong and never looked back," Bohon said. "We outscored them in ever quarter, but the third. They outscored us 9-8 in the third. After a nine day break it was a good way to come back. Everyone played pretty well."

Jon Karlin led River Ridge with 13 points and nine rebounds. Nick Masterson and Steven Spears each finished with 12. Masterson also had eight rebounds.

River Ridge will now face Dalton in the semifinals today at 8:30 p.m. at Cass. Because Dalton is in the other half of Region 7AAAA, the teams have never met before. Based on performance against common opponents, Bohon anticipates a competitive game.

"We try not to look too much as the scoreboard and just play every possession," Bohon said. "Based on common opponents they beat everybody just about how we did so it should be a really tough game to be honest."

With Monday's victory, River Ridge also secured a state playoff berth.

Girls Basketball

River Ridge 65, Cedartown 35: The River Ridge girls will be playing Heritage in the Region 7AAAA tournament semifinals after defeating Cedartown on Monday in the quarterfinals at Cass.

Jessica Baker scored her 1,000th career point and finished with 24 as the Lady Knights dominated every aspect of the game. Baker accounted for all of her points either at the free-throw line or beyond the arc, where she made seven baskets.

The victory also assures River Ridge a place in the Class AAAA state playoffs. It's the fourth straight season the Lady Knights have reach the state playoffs, something coach Jason Taylor said was a goal his team had set.

"It's a relief to know that no mater what happens (today) or Wednesday we know that we are still going to be playing in the state tournament," Taylor said. "It was one of the goals that we set for the season and now we've got it checked off."

Jessica Mlaska, who was scoreless in the fourth quarter, was the only other River Ridge player in double-digits with 17. Lucy Stone and Sydney Rodie both finished with eight points.

As a team River Ridge made 10 of 14 free-throw attempts.

River Ridge led 17-6 after the first quarter and 33-15 at the half. The Lady Knights' lead exploded in the third quarter to 54-22. Cedartown's leading scorer, Victoria Fraser, was held to just eight points, six of which were earned at the free-throw line.

Taylor said he didn't change anything for the playoffs. He is just having his team do what it has excelled at all season. The team was perfect in region play during the regular season, but had a couple close calls against Pickens.

"As far as the playoffs go, we are just doing what we do," Taylor said. "We will continue to work and get better at it. (Today) is going to be a tough game and it will be going forward. Wednesday will be tough whether we are playing in the consolation or in the championship. Gilmer and Northwest (Whitfield) are both really good team. Right now we are just focused on taking care of (Heritage) and getting back to play for a region championship."

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