They won the District 3-AAA championship game against Clinton. They advanced to the Region 2 championship game by defeating West and Maryville in quarterfinal and semifinal games.
On Thursday, in the championship game, they finished second in the region, losing 55-52 to Bearden after narrowing a 15-point Bulldogs lead late in the third quarter to one point late in the fourth.
Tonight, Monday, March 8, the Oak Ridge Wildcats (26-5) will play for a chance to compete in the state basketball tournament. They will travel to Dobyns-Bennett (25-4) in Kingsport in upper East Tennessee for one of eight Class AAA sectional games across the state. The winners of the sectional games advance to the state tournament in Murfreesboro, and the season is over for the losers.
You can listen to the game on FM 92.7, Prepradio.com, and Channel 15 on Comcast. The games are broadcast by David Clary with help from Mark and Shawna Haste and others.
While Oak Ridge was runner-up in Region 2, Dobyns-Bennett was the champion in Region 1, beating Jefferson County 64-53 in a championship game on Thursday.
It’s the third year in a row that the Wildcats have made it to a sectional game. They lost to Sevier County 62-57 two years ago, according to records kept by CoachT.com, and they won 84-66 at Science Hill last year.
This year, Oak Ridge won the District 3 championship game against Clinton (17-6) on Tuesday, February 23. Oak Ridge was led during that game by Stafford Shanklin with 20 points, according to Clary. Kell Slater, who was named most valuable player of the district tournament, scored 18 points, Johnathan Stewart had 14, Jeremy Miller added eight, and Jonathan Milloway had seven.
Oak Ridge and Clinton also played for the district championship last year. Oak Ridge won that game 73-69.
It’s the third district championship in a row for the Wildcats. They are coached by Aaron Green, who recently achieved his 300th victory in 11 years.
Next, Oak Ridge defeated West (11-10) 78-61 in a Region 2 quarterfinal game on Saturday, February 27. Then, they eliminated Maryville (20-10), the defending Region 2 champion, 64-49 in a semifinal game on Saturday, February 27.
Milloway led Oak Ridge in the game against West with 22 points. Miller scored 18 points, Shanklin had 11, and Slater and Stewart each added nine.
Milloway scored his 1,000 point during the semifinal game against Maryville, becoming the 23rd Wildcat to do so, Clary said. Milloway also led in scoring with 19 points during that game. Slater scored 18 points, and Shanklin and Stewart each had nine.
While the Wildcats beat Maryville in a semifinal game this year, the Rebels defeated Oak Ridge last year, in the Region 2 championship game, 61-48.
In the Region 2 championship game against Bearden (29-3) this year, Oak Ridge was again led by Milloway, who scored 16 points. It was his third straight game to lead in scoring. Stewart scored 14 points against Bearden, and Slater had 12.
Oak Ridge eliminated Bearden in a Region 2 semifinal game last year, and they lost to the Bulldogs 65-51 in the championship game two years ago.
The Wildcats last played Dobyns-Bennett in basketball in the Arby’s Classic in Bristol in December 2015. Oak Ridge won that game 81-35.
Bearden will host Jefferson County (18-16) in another Class AAA sectional game tonight.