By Maurice Patton
If the first meeting was any indication, MyTV30 may have gotten a top-shelf choice to open its High School Hoops telecasts for 2021.
The Division II-A District 3 boys contest between Columbia Academy and host Christ Presbyterian Academy will air Tuesday at approximately 7:30 p.m., following the girls game between the two schools.
CA rode a 45-point first half to an 88-83 win at home over the Lions on Dec. 12, as the two teams combined for 20 3-pointers – five by CPA in a torrid 35-point fourth period that saw the visitors nearly complete a successful comeback.
“That was a blessing. The greatest thing that happened for us was losing that night,” said CPA coach Drew Maddux, whose team has won seven of nine since while rising to the top spot in the Associated Press DII-A statewide poll. “We appreciate CA and ‘Coach Marty’ for kicking our butts that night.”
CPA takes an 11-3 (5-1) record into the weekend, with district games scheduled for Friday at Grace Christian and Saturday against visiting Battle Ground Academy.
Columbia Academy (9-1, 4-0), meanwhile, has played just three times since downing the Lions and snapping a two-game skid in that series. The Bulldogs were idle for two-plus weeks following the game, falling to Lipscomb Academy on Dec. 28, then posted wins over Summertown and Franklin Road Academy on consecutive nights before going into pandemic-related quarantine.
CA – first among “others receiving votes” in the AP DII-A Top Five poll – resumes play Thursday against visiting Providence Christian, then hosts Zion Christian Friday and travels to Providence Christian for a boys-only matchup Monday before the CPA clash.
“Like I told the guys, the schedule’s not convenient for anybody right now,” CA coach Marty DeJarnette said regarding his team’s upcoming slate. “You have to put these games where you can. You’ve got to get them in.”
DeJarnette has concerns regarding his team’s state of readiness for the rematch, in light of its recent COVID issues.
“I’ve got mixed emotions, considering where we’re at, coming out of a break,” he said. “Any time you go against a team the caliber of CPA, it’s a big ask of some guys. We need some guys to grow up fast and step up, but they’ve done a good job so far.
“It’s exciting for our guys. We take it as a compliment, that they think of us in that light. We’re looking forward to the challenge, on TV or not; that’s not going to make any difference. We’ve still got to go out and play. CPA is playing at a high level.”
Longtime Nashville Sounds radio announcer Jeff Hem will handle play-by-play duties, with Max Herz from the Vanderbilt Sports Network providing color commentary.
“We’re honored to be the first (game),” Maddux said. “It’s two great teams and it should be a great game.”