The Holy Innocents’ basketball teams remained busy over the holiday break, with both teams competing in the third annual Big South Shootout held Dec. 27- 31 at HIES.

The girls went 2-1 in the event, knocking off Beach High School, then falling to Hoover High School and closing with a win over Mt. Zion. 

Things didn’t go as well for the boys. They fell to Woodville-Tompkins, Mount View and Centennial. 

For the girls, coach Nichole Dixon got contributions from many during their tournament success, with Jillian Hollingshead, Rachel Suttle, Omari Foote, Olivia Hutcherson, Jada Farrell and Charlsie Birkel among the many stars. 

The boys, under new coach Cabral Huff, have struggled in the win column thus far but appear to be getting stronger with each game. Garrison Powell has led the team in scoring, with point guard Justin Wilson making strong contributions both in assists and scoring.

Landon Kardian, after a long football season, has stepped in quickly as a force both on the boards and on offense at both ends of the floor. Grant Esler is another of many who has also proven an early season plus.

Both teams continued regular season play Saturday. The girls fell 61-40 to Lovejoy, while the boys came out on the downside of a 71-67 loss, also to Lovejoy. Hollingshead, Suttle and Farrell led the girls. The boys got great play out of Powell, Wilson, Kardian and Walker Wolf.

Also over the weekend, the Holy Innocents’ wrestling team hosted the 12th annual Prep Slam, which drew 45 teams from 12 states, consisting of nearly 500 wrestlers. The Bears proved more than competitive, placing 11th among 46 teams. The Bears were led by fourth-place finishes from Art Martinez, Jake Swink and Michael Cox.

It was a fitting follow-up to the team’s performances before Christmas when they traveled to New Orleans. Martinez — fourth in state last year — won the event going 5-0 in the process, while defending state champ Jake Swink went 4-1 in taking second.

The Holy Innocents’ swim team was idle over break, though they did get a state-qualifying performance before Christmas when Sterling Hartrich made the postseason cut in the 100- and 200-free at Georgia Tech. 

Other notables for Coach Kristina Nesbitt included Anna Harper, Anna Stephens, Christopher Binney, Sydney Sprayberry, Elijah Croswell, Maddie Poch, Katherine Poch, Laney Bertholf and Abigail Wells.


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