R.A. Hubbard boys, Lawrence County girls win county crown

·3 min read

Jan. 23—HATTON — In 2018 R.A. Hubbard's boys, along with Lawrence County's girls won county championships on the floor of Hatton High School.

Four years later, they did it again.

R.A. Hubbard defeated Hatton 61-45 Saturday night for it's first title since 2019. In a rematch of last year's finals, Lawrence County defeated Hatton 68-56 to win it's second straight title.

The championship was the first for first-year Hubbard head coach Chris Lewis, while it was the second for Lawrence County's fourth-year head coach K.C. Orr.

"This a special moment and a big win for our program," said Lewis.

"It's a big deal to me. I never got to win this as a player," Orr said. "Seeing how excited my girls are to win, it's such a full circle moment."

The 2022 county tournament has been under a cloud. With the potential closure of R.A. Hubbard looming, there's belief this could be the final chapter in the tournament's history.

Neither coach was ready to buy into that just yet.

"This win was going to be special no matter what," Lewis said. "But I think we're going to be alright."

"I hope this isn't the end," said Orr. "I hope more generations will get to experience this."

R.A. Hubbard boys 61, Hatton 45: Hubbard exploded out of the gate Saturday, building a 15-2 lead that Hatton could never overcome.

"I think the moment got to us a bit, but they deserve a ton of credit," said Hatton head coach Justin Henley. "The first four minutes were rough. We weren't ready and they hit some shots. We chipped away but we could never get on enough of a run to get over the hump."

R.A. Hubbard's Cookie Cobb followed up a 30-point performance on Thursday with a 26-point performance Saturday night. His two stellar games earned him the 2022 boy's county MVP.

"This feels amazing," Cobb said. "I couldn't ask for a better team. It feels so good to win."

Trey Kellogg had 18 points for R.A. Hubbard, while Kahne Little led Hatton with 19.

When R.A. Hubbard won the county title in 2018 at Hatton, it sparked a run that led the Chiefs all the way to the Final Four in Birmingham.

Could history repeat itself again?

"We're going to see what the cards hold, but I would say a run is possible," Lewis said. "We're just going to keep working."

Lawrence County girls 68, Hatton 56: Missing three starters, including its top two scorers, Hatton was no match for the Red Devils. Lawrence County led 30-10 after the first quarter and never looked back.

"After you win one, you want to make sure you're not complacent," Orr said. "Our girls were just as hungry as they were last year. This meant something to them."

Anna Clare Hutto led Lawrence County with 19 points, while Josie Montgomery and Ava Boyll each had 14. Kenadie Harville led Hatton with 16.

Hutto, who has won three county MVPs in volleyball, added another Saturday when she was named the girl's tournament MVP.

"I have a volleyball mindset, so when I'm playing I'm looking to pass," said Hutto, who's committed to Wallace State as a volleyball setter. "This year I've taken on more of a scoring role, so winning this award is a pretty cool honor."

For Hatton, who had more people in street clothes on the bench than active players, head coach Chasta Chamness was equally as excited, even in a loss.

"I'm going to tell you, I'm extremely proud of these girls. We lost by 12 with our two leading scorers out," Chamness said. "When we got to the locker room after the game, I was jacked. We had young kids that stepped up, played hard and played well. That's going to pay off come area tournament time."