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Pioneers suffer setback in Sonic Shootout
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Isaiah Cummings goes up against a McMinn Central defender Monday in the Sonic Shootout in Sparta. Cummings scored 14 points. - photo by Taylor Moore

The Warren County Pioneers travelled to White County for the Sonic Shootout tournament where they first played against McMinn Central High School on Monday. The boys weren’t as lucky as the Lady Pioneers, losing their first game 70-62.

The loss is the second straight for Warren County and drops the team to 6-5. McMinn Central has won three of its last four and improves to 3-6.

Treyton Terry, back after missing the past three games, was the top scorer for Warren County with 23 points, followed by Isaiah Cummings with 14.

Starting off similar to the girls, the Pioneers were trailing 7-0. Treyton Terry scored the Pioneers first basket followed by a layup by Kaden Rutledge. 

A double team by defenders Terry and Sawyer Seymour produced a steal and led to Terry making a layup.

The Pioneers trailed entering the second quarter, 14-9. Warren County’s Isaiah Cummings made two 3-pointers to help the Pioneers find offensive rhythm.

Warren County consistently stayed on the Chargers’ tail until the end of the first half. With McMinn Central making shots and Warren County unable to keep the ball controlled, the Charger lead widened to 26-16 just before the half.

In the last minute, Cummings made a 3 that was followed by both Terry and Cummings stealing the ball and each making a layup. The Pioneers managed to trail by only four points at halftime, 28-24.

The third quarter proved tougher for the Pioneers as the Chargers started stealing the ball and controlling the boards. Within the first few minutes, McMinn had pushed the lead back to 10.

With some missed baskets, the Pioneers trailed 46-33 with 30 seconds left in the third. 

Spirits undefeated, Pioneer Braylon Grayson was strong under the goal retrieving many rebounds and putting up a couple shots. While a Charger was passing in the ball, Cummings sprinted out of nowhere for a steal and passed it straight to Terry for an easy layup. 

Eli Kuykendall managed to steal the ball only to be fouled immediately. Warren County attempted to steal the ball a lot which got the Pioneers into some foul trouble allowing the Chargers to put up 9 points in just foul shots.

With 20 seconds left, the Chargers had a comfortable 12-point lead before Rutledge hit a 3. Rutledge managed to make one more 3-pointer at the buzzer, making the final score 70-62.

Three-pointers were especially popular in the fourth with Cummings putting up one, Rutledge with two, and Terry with three, totaling 18 points.

The Pioneers faced York Institute on Tuesday and will finish the Sonic Shootout on Wednesday.

WCHS -- Treyton Terry 23, Isaiah Cummings 14, Kaden Rutledge 8, Eli Kuykendall 6, Braylon Grayson 5, Nate Elrod 4, Keldrick Cox 2

McMinn Central Top Scorers -- Darius Carden 20, Carter Henderson 17, Gabe Masingale 15