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Monday, April 15, 2024

Paris Boys Get Big Season Opening Win at Dover


Reminiscent to the days of Razorback basketball, Nolan Richardson, and Mike Anderson, the Paris Eagles unveiled their own version of “40 minutes of Hell” in a season opening victory at Dover. The Eagles new head coach, Blain Brewington, a former graduate assistant coach under Arkansas’s Mike Anderson, rolled out a stifling defense that applied relentless pressure all night and kept the Eagles in the lead for the entire game.

Resident Press Photo

In the first game of the session, the Paris Lady Eagles, playing their first game of the season, lost a comeback bid in overtime to the Lady Pirates after tying the game with approximately one second remaining in regulation on a three point shot by sophomore Brailey Forst. The opportunity for the shot was made possible by an in-bounds steal with just three seconds in the game. Trailing by 3 points, Jacee Hart intercepted the inbounds pass from Dover to set up the game-tying shot.

The Lady Eagles’ Jacee Hart (2) intercepts an in-bounds pass with just three seconds remaining in regulation (Resident Press Photo)

Both teams played extremely hard against a very good basketball program. In their first games of the season, the Paris boys and girls teams went on the road with some of the Lady Eagles having just completed volleyball season, and the boys not having some of its players available due to the Eagles football team still playing in the state playoffs. Both coaches, Donald Hart and Blain Brewington were very excited about the effort of their teams and the prospects for a successful season this year.

Lady Eagles coach Donald Hart, in his first year at the helm as their new head coach, commented, “We were very proud of the team’s effort offensively and defensively for 36 minutes. They put us in a good spot to win the game. Turnovers, free throws, and shots falling will improve as we get our legs. Senior point guard Jadyn Hart played exceptionally well scoring 30 points. Sophomore forward Brailey Forst was big with ten points and eight rebounds; one of them being a three-point shot with less than five seconds to tie the game. This group has a high ceiling and I am excited to see what they can do. As pieces fall into place, this will be a fun team to watch.” The Lady Eagles eventually lost the game 50-44 in overtime.

Resident Press Photo

New Paris boys coach Blain Brewington was also very happy with his team’s performance on Thursday night. Coach Brewington praised his team who got their first win of the season by saying, “Very pleased with the effort for the first game. Guys played extremely hard and battled the whole game. We have a lot to clean up; must be better on the boards, must take better care of the basketball, can’t get lost defensively late in the game, and we have to finish at the rim. Our kids will improve everyday. They are a group that works hard everyday. So proud of their effort of how they guarded the basketball. We had nine assists on 18 made baskets. At times we tried to force some passes and got relaxed with the basketball and had some silly turnovers. We found a way to pull out the win. We will continue to work hard everyday to improve on what we need to do. So proud of the kids’ effort; especially on the defensive end. Cayden McDaniel was a warrior guarding their best player for most of the game even though the kid was six inches taller than him. Sam Muldrow and Jesse Wells played will in their senior high debut. Juan Santos was steady and just solid for us and played within himself. Dylan Krigbaum and Caleb Cunningham kept us calm, cool, and collected during crunch time which wis what we need with their experience. Great to win always, but even better with us being short handed with our football kids still in the playoffs competing for a state championship.”

Resident Press Photo

Both teams will return to the road on Monday, November 16, when Paris travels to West Fork to play the Tigers. Games will begin at 5 p.m with senior girls junior varsity, senior boys junior varsity, senior girls varsity and senior boys varsity games. Paris will return home on Tuesday night November 17 for their first home games of the new season. Paris will host Lamar on Tuesday night starting at 5:30 p.m. with junior high boys, senior high girls and senior high boys games.

So Eagles fans, basketball is underway, and your Paris Eagles and Lady Eagles are set to have big years and possibly qualify both teams in the regional and state tournaments. There is a lot of basketball to be played, but as Coach Hart said, these teams have a high ceiling of how good they can potentially become this year.

See you Monday night in West Fork!

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Jim Best
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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