PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Arnwine averaged 14 points per game in the regular season, and that number improved to 16 in the postseason as the Cherokees finished 24-11 — 6-2 in the postseason — and advanced to their first state tournament since 1991. “He’s an outstanding young man and was
our most consistent player all year,” McMinn coach Keith Elliott said. “He took on the role as leader and exceeded our expectations in so many ways. I’m very proud of him.”
COACH OF THE YEAR
Elliott had experienced the enjoyment of advancing to the state tournament as an assistant coach. In his 19th season as McMinn County’s head coach, he got the pleasure of going again. As the No. 4 seeds in the District 5-AAA tournament, the Cherokees battled through five overtimes — four in one game — and reeled off four straight victories, won the Region 3 championship and advanced to their first state tournament since 1991. “The postseason was obviously the highlight, but I was really proud of how we came together as a team,” Elliott said. “Everybody filled their roles, and I think that really made a difference.” After a four-overtime loss to Ooltewah in the District 5-AAA tournament final, the McMinn County senior pulled his teammates around him and said they were capable of
making it to the state tournament, and he was right.
He averaged 16 points and six assists per game for a team that reached a Class AAA sectional.
He averaged 16 points per regular season game and 18.5 in the postseason for the Bears.
He averaged 24.4 points and 5.8 assists for the Indians, runners up in District 7-AA.
Tucker averaged 23.8 points and 18 rebounds per game as a third-time District 6-A honoree.
Stephens averaged 19 points, 10 assists and three steals per game for the Yellow Jackets.
HUNTER CHASTAIN Bradley Central Junior Forward
B.J. DAVIS Cleveland Senior Guard
ANDREW FACCIANI Rhea County Senior Forward
CEDRIC NEVINS McMinn County Junior Guard
TYLER SKIDMORE Meigs County Senior Guard
TEAMS OF THE YEAR
1 MCMINN COUNTY (24-11)
The Cherokees, the No. 4 seeds in the district tournament, went 6-2 in the postseason and advanced to their first state tournament since 1991.
2 CLEVELAND (19-10)
The Blue Raiders were the Region 3-AAA runners-up and battled state semifinalist Siegel to the wire before falling in a state sectional.
3 BRADLEY CENTRAL (20-9)
The Bears were runners-up in the District 5-AAA regular season and reached the region quarterfinals.
Photos by Jake Daniels. Text by Gene Henley. Design by Stacey Wysong.