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Feeling blue: Devils lose five consecutive games

Unicoi County High School forced extra play, but the Patriots would not be denied on their home turf.
Madison County High School had four players reach double figures and took a double overtime 76-72 triumph over the Blue Devils in high school hoops action on Friday, Jan. 2, in Marshall, N.C.
The loss for Unicoi County (9-9) was the fifth straight since their win over Cloudland on Dec. 11. It was a contest that Blue Devil head coach John English had to sit out, serving the first of his two-game suspension after receiving a pair of questionable technical fouls last week in the team’s Bearden Super 16 Classic finale against York Institute in Knoxville.
Madison County (5-6) continued their surging success across the state border after coming out on the receiving end of a 72-34 rout at the beginning of the year to the Blue Devils.
Head coach Jonathan McDevitt’s crew is one of three teams undefeated, in league play, in the Western Highlands Conference in N.C. – joining Mitchell County and Avery County.
The Patriots were led by junior Mitchell Ledford on Friday with 16 points.
The Blue Devils were able to force extra time after outscoring the Patriots 22-19 in the fourth to head into the first overtime knotted up, 60-60.
Defense took the highlight in the first overtime, with both teams only able to toss up four points each. In the second period, the ‘Pats were able to score the go-ahead run they needed, ending the second overtime frame with a 12-8 margin over UCHS.
Sophomore Dylan Putman led with a game-high 18 points for the Blue Devils. Putman and senior Davis Webb (17 points) nearly accounted for half of UCHS’ scoring in the loss.
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UCHS opened play on Tuesday, Jan. 6, in Kingsport after The Erwin Record’s press deadline against Three Rivers Conference rival Sullivan South. The Blue Devils entered the game at 3-0 in league play. Both teams met back in November with the Blue Devils netting a 61-57 decision in the Hardee’s Classic.
On Friday, Jan. 9, UCHS will make the trip to Mountain City to continue their league stint against the Johnson County Longhorns.
Tipoff for junior varsity games are at 5 p.m. and the varsity game is scheduled to start at 8 p.m.
Updates of each contest will also be featured online at The Erwin Record Sports Facebook page.