MERIDIAN - Huckabay's boys appeared bound for the championship game in Meridian's High School basketball tournament after opening day of the event Friday.

The Indians, ranked eighth in 1A Division II, soundly defeated 2A Dublin and 1A Division I Hico. Only Waco Live Oak Classical with its six total players and 0-2 mark on Friday remained on Huckabay's pool play schedule.

Dublin and Hico were set to play Saturday morning for second place in the pool, with the winner headed to that evening's third-place game, the loser to the fifth-place contest.

The tournament consists of two four-team pools with three round-robin games for each team. The winners of each pool met for the championship Saturday night, the second-place teams played for third and fourth place, third-place teams for fifth and sixth and fourth-place teams for seventh and eighth.

Games were held at Meridian's elementary and high school gyms.


Huckabay 57, Dublin 37

Huckabay started fast on the strength of its full-court pressure and big first quarters by Cade Bray and Gavin Fuentes, and never looked back in a 57-37 pool play win over Dublin at the elementary school Friday morning.

Bray scored nine and Fuentes seven in the opening stanza, when Huckabay poured in the game's first 14 points and built a 21-6 lead.

The Indians stretched the advantage to 33-13 by intermission and were ahead by at least 18 throughout the second half, when Dublin finally found its legs and scored almost twice as many points as it did before the break.

Bray finished with 18 and Fuentes 17 for Huckabay, while Zoey Kendall was the only Dublin player in double figures with 11.

The Indians also picked up nine points from Junior Fragoza and six from Ky Bray. Abel Aguilar scored nine for the Lions.


Huckabay 56, Hico 32

Huckabay changed courts but maintained its tempo, especially on the defensive end in its 56-32 pool play victory over Hico Friday afternoon at the high school.

This time it was the second quarter when the Indians did their most damage, outscoring Hico 20-4 in the frame for a 36-13 lead at halftime.

Gavin Fuentes scored all of his game-high 19 points in the first three quarters, and Junior Fragoza had all of his 13 by halftime. Cade Bray was also in double figures with 10, and Garrett Stewart contributed six.

Cade Hitzfeld led Hico with 13 points, 10 of them in the third quarter.


Dublin 49, Waco Live Oak Classical 35

Dublin jumped ahead 12-4 by the end of the first quarter and kept Waco Live Oak Classical at arm's length in a 49-35 win Friday afternoon at the elementary school.

The Lions were paced by Travis Blazi with 12 points and Abel Aguilar with 11. Ricky Chacon scored eight.


Hico 40, Waco Live Oak Classical 32

Hunter Wood scored 11 points and Ryder Needham 10 to lead Hico in a 40-32 victory over Waco Live Oak Classical to begin boys play in the tournament at the high school Friday morning.

Dallas Anderson, a freshman, added seven points for the Tigers, who also picked up six from Cade Hitzfeld.