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PREP BASKETBALL: Model takes a pair of region wins at Pepperell as teams return to the court

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Model vs. Pepperell

Pepperell's Davis McGinty (11) tries to take a shot against Model's Justin Roberts (left) and Josh Smith during a Region 7-AA game Friday, Jan. 19, 2018, at Pepperell High School. Model won 60-39. (Jeremy Stewart/RN-T.com)

Three days away from the gym will leave many coaches simply looking for something to spark their team upon their return to competition.

Model’s boys’ coach Jacob Travis got his version of that in the second period of the Blue Devils’ Region 7-AA tilt Friday night against Pepperell in Lindale on the way to a 60-39 win after winter weather had kept most area teams from playing or practicing since Monday.

Up by one after a steady opening quarter, Model (8-11, 4-6 7-AA) took a firm grasp on its first game back in the first four minutes of the second period, hitting five 3-pointers and building a 20-2 run that put the visiting Devils up 28-7.

Pepperell reined in Model some for the remainder of the game while finishing shots to keep the deficit from growing but the Blue Devils did their part to secure the win.

“I think the layoff got to them. We played Pepperell on a good night, because they are better than that, but they didn’t hit as many shots as they normally do,” Travis said.

“We kept on the attack and did a good job looking for the open man, keeping our turnovers down. But that’s one of those games where, after three days off, you move on no matter the outcome.”

Travis credited the second period spark to the way the upperclassmen handled the Dragons’ pressure as well as Cameron Loggins, who came off the bench and hit two 3’s while helping feed starters Tanner Bethune and Jackson Lively.

Lively scored a game-high 18 points, including a trey to close out the first half and put Model up 33-15 at the break. Justin Roberts finished with 16 points while Jackson Mathis had eight.

Pepperell (7-7, 5-3) was led by Dawson Melton’s 11 points. Andrew Wilder finished with eight.

In the girls’ game, Victaria Saxton dominated at the basket, scoring 34 of Model’s 47 points in a 47-28 victory over Pepperell as the Lady Blue Devils remain undefeated in region play.

Saxton began the game by drawing two fouls in the first two minutes but was charged with just one other infraction for the remainder of the game. The senior went on to score 17 of Model’s 18 points in the third period, which included a 17-2 run, and was 12 of 16 at the line on the night.

Kaylee Mansell led Pepperell (4-10, 2-6) with eight points, while Kinsey Wright and Lakeeya Wiggins each finished with six. Model (15-3, 9-0) followed Saxton in the Lady Devils’ scoring column with six from a pair of 3-pointers.

Model’s teams will be back in action today at Coosa. The girls’ game starts at 4 p.m., followed by the boys’ game. Pepperell hosts Dade County on Monday evening.