Eastern Dominates First Half, Beats River Valley in Opener

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It is December and you know what that means, High school football is coming to an end and basketball is just heating up. Tonight was a showdown between the Eastern Eagles and the River Valley Raiders.

In what was the first game of the season for both Eastern ran away with this one 56-41.

Last season the Raiders were 8-14 and the Eagles were 9-13. Tonight’s game was at River Valley but Eastern looked at right at home. Both of these teams were looking we’re looking to start their season on a good note.

The Eagles came out and dominated the game from the start. They had more energy and brought more physicality than River Valley. The Raiders couldn’t get anything to fall in the first half. With all those shots not falling, Eastern was able to dominate the Raiders on the board.

With the loss of Jet Facemire to graduation, Eastern Coach Jeremy Hill talked about how to replace Jet’s scoring.

“You replace it with good leadership and ball movement,” Hill said. “We shared the ball and that is something we haven’t had in the past.”

The Eagles needed this year’s lone senior Caleb Hill to step up and he did just that. In the first half, Caleb had 8 points and 12 points leading the Eagles to a 26 to 12 lead. He would end the game with a double-double, with 16 points and 20 rebounds.

 “Caleb Hill has come a long way from where he was when he arrived at Eastern and I could not be prouder of a kid,” Hill said. “I couldn’t be prouder of all of them.”

Hill would get help from Isaiah Fish added 13 while Garrett Barringer and Colton Reynolds added 11.

River Valley would go on a 10-2 run to start the 4th. This would cut the lead to 11 with five minutes to play. The Eagles would need someone to make a play to halt the Raiders momentum. Guess who, Caleb Hill comes up with a big rebound and outlets it to 14 to starts the Eagles own 7 point lead.

River Valley would outscore Eastern 31-30 in the second half but the first half deficit was just too big. The Raiders did have a good showing from one of their 4 seniors, Jarret McCarley had 17 points on the night.

River Valley will look to find their first win of the young season Tuesday against the Jackson Ironmen. Eastern will be at home next Friday when they look to continue their momentum from tonight against the Trimble Tomcats.