Mt. Tabor crowned champs of 2016 Lash/Chronicle tournament

The 2016 Lash/Chronicle champion Mt. Tabor Spartans pose with Cheryl Lindsay of Hanesbrands (far left)

Mt. Tabor crowned champs of 2016 Lash/Chronicle tournament
December 29
06:00 2016

Photo byTimothy Ramsey



The championship game of the 2016 Lash/Chronicle tournament between the Mt. Tabor Spartans and the Reagan Raiders had the makings of a great game.  Both teams progressively got better each weekend of the tournament and have played the most consistent basketball of all the teams in this year’s field.

Starting off, the Raiders were a little tight, missing shots they normally would make, creating an early 7-0 deficit.  Reagan was finally able to get on the board with a little over three minutes left in the first quarter.  Jakob Moore of Mt. Tabor made his impact felt by crashing the offensive boards and not letting Reagan get any clear shots off in the paint.  The Spartans led 11-3 after one in a defensive battle.

The stellar defense from both sides continued into the second quarter.  Mt. Tabor seemed to take advantage of any defensive lapse that Reagan made.  Jordan Hunter of Mt. Tabor made some clutch shots toward the end of the half where the Spartans led 19-9 in a low scoring game to that point.

In the third quarter, Mt. Tabor turned it up a notch both offensively and defensively.  They kept the Raiders off balance and to add insult to injury for Reagan, Aaron Muse hit a three-point shot from half court as time expired to end the third quarter.  That shot gave Mt. Tabor a 33-17 lead heading into the final quarter.

Reagan made a run in the fourth quarter to bring the score to 35-29.  That would be as close as the Raiders would get as Mt. Tabor answered with a 6-0 run of their own.  Toward the end of the game, the Raiders started fouling, sending the Spartans to the line to earn more possessions. Unfortunately for Reagan, the Spartans were money from the line and won the game comfortably 51-35.

“I’m proud of all of my guys because they understand what it takes to get better every day,” said Mt. Tabor head coach Willie Harrison.  “Every day we want to get better on the practice floor like it was a real game.  They have done a good job in this tournament and we came out on top.”

Reagan head coach James Stackhouse added, “Mt. Tabor is a tough team and they play hard.  They are a complete team and tonight we fell short.  They are a good ball club and they play solid defense and rebound well.  We just have to continue to do what we do but improve in every area.  We are still looking forward to try and win the conference.”

All tournament player Patrick Travatello of Reagan said, “We were fighting the entire tournament and came in as somewhat of an underdog.  I think I have been working well in the paint and we just kept pushing and pushing and we made it to the championship. Even though we fell short, it was a good game.”

Mt. Tabor guard Andrew Muse said earlier in the season they were still trying to figure each other out but as time progressed they got a feel for one another. He says they love to play team ball and there is no selfishness on their squad.

Aaron Muse of Mt. Tabor was named to the All-Tournament Team and tournament Most Valuable Player (MVP). He says it felt great to beat Reagan because they had lost to them last year in the freshman tournament.

“We came together as a team, we are a family and just love how we overcame adversity and won the tournament,” Aaron Muse continued. “I wasn’t too worried about getting MVP I just wanted to win the tournament. All the hard work and dedication paid off.”

Muses’ father, Andy Muse, said a lot of different players from many teams could have won but he was happy his son came away with the trophy. He said hopefully his son will be humble and that his teammates were a big part of the trophy as well.

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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