Left: Clay City eighth grader Bill Newton (#32) goes in for a layup during the first half of the Eels' win over Shakamak.
Right: Clay City seventh grader, Tyler Bridgewater, goes to the hoop for two of his 16 points in Monday's win.
CLAY CITY -- The Clay City junior high basketball teams opened up their seasons with a pair of exciting victories over Shakamak on Monday evening.
The eighth grade squad recovered from an early double-digit lead and Spenser Barrett hit a free throw to tie the game with under a minute left. In overtime, both Bill Newton and Jacob Payne scored a pair of baskets and Tyler Jenkins added a steal and a basket to lead the Eels to a 54-48 opening night victory.
Newton and Payne provided some big numbers for the Jr. High Eels to help counteract an 18 point night from Shakamak's Ethan Stanifer.
Newton was the top scorer with 25 points and had 13 rebounds with a pair of blocks while Payne contributed 17 points and 13 boards of his own for Clay City.
Jenkins added six points for Clay City and both Barrett and Lucas Combs added three points in the victory.
Seventh Grade Basketball
In the seventh grade game, the Eels got off to a strong start, leading 18-6 through one period of play on the way to a 39-25 victory.
Ethan Shaw tallied eight of his 12 points in the first quarter and Tyler Bridgewater sent home six of his game-high 16 points as Clay City ran out to an 18-6 lead after one quarter.
However, the Lakers rallied to hold the Eels to just two points in the second quarter to narrow the halftime gap to 20-14 and eventually got within two points in the third quarter before going on a 10-0 run to end the quarter.
Both Shaw and Logan Fry pulled down four rebounds in the third period to aid the Clay City cause.
Kyle Grafe had five points for Clay City in the win and Fry had four points with Austin Sinders chipping in with two.
Next up for the junior high squads is a Thursday road game against Eminence at 6 p.m.
Clay City Jr. High Basketball
8th grade game
Clay City 54, Shakamak 48, OT
3-point fieldgoals -- Shakamak 6 (Stanifer 2, Smith, Gambill, Van Horn, Sparks), Clay City 1 (Combs).
7th grade game
Clay City 39, Shakamak 25
3-point fieldgoals -- Shakamak 1 (Gilreath), Clay City (None).