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Sunday, October 2, 2022

Lamar Narrowly Avoids Upset at Hands of Rapidly Improving Eagles, 56-50

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The Paris Eagles traveled to Lamar on Tuesday night to face the Warriors in the opening game of conference action for both schools. The Paris Eagles played hard and either tied or had the lead in the fourth quarter against the heavily-favored Warriors, but were unable to come away with the upset road win. Lamar hung on for a tough 56-50 win over the rapidly improving Paris Eagles. The Eagles have played hard all season, but last evening, Paris may have played their best game this season.

For the Eagles, Luke Trusty and Jude Simmons led Paris on the boards with 6 rebounds each. Dylan Krigbaum led all Paris scorers with 15 points. Coach Mike Foster continues to be pleased with his teams effort, but noted that this team, gaining experience with each game, needs to learn how to close games out with a win. “The boys played hard just as they always do. We just need to learn how to win a game in the 4th quarter. We have been tied or led in the 4th quarters of 6 of our 8 losses this season. We will keep working hard!”

In Paris girls action, the Lady Eagles lost to a talented, veteran Lamar team, 59-39. Harlie Watts led all Paris scorers with 16 points and 3 assists. Jadyn Hart added 10 points, 4 assists, and 6 rebounds. Paiton Forbes had 10 points, 4 assists, and 6 rebounds. Rounding out the scoring for the Lady Eagles, Jacee Hart had 5 points, 6 rebounds, and Karsyn Tencleve added 2 points. Coach Dustin Williams noted that the experienced Lamar team was able to hold off a couple of Paris runs that threatened to close the lead on the Lady Warriors. “Our team played hard, but the veteran Lamar team was able to hold off a couple of pushes by our young team. We are still finding our way as a team. We cut the lead to 6 a few times but couldn’t get over the hump. I am very proud of how our young tam was able to hang in there with the conference favorite (Lamar) during the first half of the game.”

Both Paris teams have played with tremendous heart so far this season, and have been fun to watch. Paris fans can also be very proud of not only your teams, but by the way you have supported the Eagles, both home and away. I think we can all agree that both teams have improved significantly since the start of the season in November. The conference schedule will certainly not get any easier as time moves along, but, both teams will improve with each game. It is clear to this reporter that the players believe in themselves and will continue to work hard and represent Paris with pride each time they take the court. Both teams are fun to watch, and I know they and the coaches appreciate the support of the Paris fan base.

The conference schedule will continue for Paris this Friday night as the teams will once again go on the road to play the Perryville Mustangs. The teams records may not be impressive at this point, but their play is indicative of teams that are much better than their losses at the start of the season. In fact, if both teams continue to improve, both could be tough outs in the senior district tournament. Both boys and girls Paris junior teams are talented, and if freshmen are brought up to the varsity teams in post season to combine with the current varsity rosters, Paris could be formidable in February tournament play.

It will be Friday the 13th in Perryville when the Eagles play the Mustangs. And as always, it should be a scary night for both teams as the Eagles and Mustangs will play in their second conference game of the season. Four games will be played: junior boys and girls, and senior boys and girls. It will be time for the Paris fans to brave the drive to Perryville to support their Eagles!

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Jim Best
Jim Best is a man of many talents. His storied career in Arkansas education led him to a new passion, and hidden gifts in sports journalism.
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