The Fannin County High School Lady Rebels and Rebels basketball teams travelled to Hiawassee Dam to take on the Eagles. The Lady Rebels lost 50-41 while the Rebels routed 64-49. Both games were mired in much disputed calls.
Fannin fell behind early in the girls’ game, as the Lady Eagles flew to a 10-4 lead, before Morgan Chastain’s bucket followed by a Lindsey Humphrey put back cut the lead to 10-8, with just over three minutes left in the first quarter. However, Hiawassee closed the quarter with a 5-1 to take a 15-9 lead into the second period.
The Lady Rebels struggled with keeping the Lady Eagles off the free throw line, as the Lady Eagles scored with an “and one” three point play immediately after a Fannin’s Molly Chandler hit a single free throw.
Hiawassee held on to a substantial lead, until Hope Cochran’s free throw sparked a 13-3 run, that pulled Fannin within one point, 22-23. The half ended with Hiawassee leading by two, 27-25.
The second half began with Chandler hitting two free throws that tied the game, 27-27. The quarter was back and forth throughout, ending with Hiawassee hanging on to a one point, 35-34 lead.
Chandler again tied the game at the free throw line, at the beginning of the fourth quarter. With 6:24 left in the game, a technical foul was called on Fannin’s head coach, Suzianne Pass. Pass appeared to reach the point of exasperation with what many of the Fannin faithful were referring to as referee Hiawassee “home cooking” calls.
Fannin fell behind by three, 38-35 with just less than five minutes left in the game, and was never able to get any closer. A few big three point baskets and timely offensive rebounds put Hiawassee up 45-38 with just under three minutes left, and Hiawassee won 50-41.
The boys’ game featured Fannin’s Rebels running to an 11-2 lead before suddenly quiet Hiawassee home crowd. The Rebels outscored Hiawassee 18-11 in the first quarter.
The second quarter saw the refs address both teams at the beginning of the quarter, due to an abnormal amount of chippiness between the two teams.
After a 6-2 Hiawassee run cut the lead to four, 20-16, Jason Arp hit a three to push the lead up to seven. The Eagles responded with a 5-0 run that cut the lead to two, 23-21, with 4:58 left in the first half.
The Rebels then responded with 7-2 run, aided by back to back threes from Arp, and Christian Stepp. The Rebels rained threes all night, some might say, Fannin was “dropping trays like a nervous lunch lady.” The half ended with Fannin leading by four, 32-28.
Hiawassee opened the second half with a 5-1 run that tied the game, 33-33, with 6:30 left in the third quarter. Fannin’s Will Patterson’s bucket broke the tie, and sparked a 7-0 run by Fannin that featured and “and one” three point play from Jonathan Vecchio.
With 3:32 left in the third, the Hiawassee “home cooking” appeared to scramble head coach, Scott Eggleston, as he was charged with a technical for arguing about the lack of foul call. The play that had Eggleston hard boiled about featured a Fannin Rebel getting knocked to the ground while shooting with no whistle following.
The technical foul came with Fannin holding a four point, 40-36, lead. Over the next three and half minutes, the Rebels ran off 10 unanswered points and led 50-36 going into the fourth quarter.
The fourth quarter featured Fannin increasing its lead, as the Rebels ran right by the Eagles’ press, while the Eagles had no answer for the Rebels’ press. The Rebels ran away with a 64-49 victory.