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Ava Middle School Bears Open 2014-15 Basketball Season In Cabool Tournament

The Ava Middle School Bears opened the 2014 basketball season in tournament play last week at Cabool. Ava’s 7th grade team finished second in their division.
The Bears opened play on Monday, Nov. 10, with a 47-24 win over Mountain Grove. Ava led 20-11 at halftime and led 37-17 after three quarters of play.
Nate Swofford led Ava’s scoring with 11 points, followed by Blake King with 10 points. The remainder of the scoring for the Bears included:  Kayden Myers 8, Dylan King 6, Jacob Gillies 4, Josh Bray 4, and Aeneas Stout 4.
The Ava 7th graders defeated Salem 25-21 in the semifinal round. The Bears held a 9-2 lead early in the second quarter, but Salem gradually cut into the lead until the Bears held a 19-17 lead after three quarters of play.
The Bears took care of the ball and made their free throws in the final minutes to seal the victory.
Leading scorers were Swofford, Myers, and Blake King with 6 points each. Stout added 5 points, including making all four of his free throw attempts in the fourth quarter. Dylan King chipped in 2 points to close out the scoring for the Bears.
The Bears faced the Mountain View-Birch Tree Liberty Eagles in the 7th grade championship game. The Eagles defeated the Bears 44-31. The Eagles outscored the Bears 17-4 in the second quarter to take a 24-9 lead to the locker room at halftime. The Bears rallied to within six points early in the fourth quarter, but were unable to close the margin in the final minutes.
Blake King led Ava’s scoring with 9 points, followed by Nate Swofford with 8 points. The rest of the scoring for Ava included:  Josh Bray 5, Aeneas Stout 4, Evan Horn 3, and Kayden Myers 2.
The 8th grade Bears won their last two games of the tournament to win the consolation side of the bracket.
Mountain Grove defeated Ava 43-33 in the first round of the tournament. Ava trailed 19-15 at halftime and 29-24 after three quarters of play. Caleb Johnson led the scoring for the Bears with 12 points, followed by Stephen Copeland and Griffin Taylor with 6 points each. Thomas Emerich scored 5 points; Drake King and Dustin Kilgore scored 2 points each to complete the scoring for Ava.
The Bears defeated the Salem Tigers 43-31 in the consolation semifinal game played on Tuesday, Nov. 11. Ava jumped out to a 23-6 first quarter lead and led 38-11 after three quarters of play.
Drake King led Ava’s scoring with 9 points, followed by Johnson and Emerich with 8 points each. The remainder of the scoring for the Bears included:  Kilgore 6, Taylor 5, Copeland 4, Dodge Stout 2, and Cylas Puchta 1.
The Bears defeated the Licking Wildcats 26-22 in the consolation game played on Nov. 13. The Bears trailed 11-1 during the second quarter before rallying to close the deficit to five points by halftime. The Bears continued to claw their way back into the game until they tied the score at 20-20 by the end of the third quarter.
Ava’s defense then held the Licking squad to one field goal in the final period to seal the win. Griffin Taylor and Thomas Emerich led the scoring with 7 points, followed by Caleb Johnson with 6 points. Drake King scored 4 points and Stephen Copeland chipped in 2 points to close out the scoring for the Bears.