BLUE RIDGE — Height is certainly an advantage on the basketball court.

BLUE RIDGE — Height is certainly an advantage on the basketball court.


But Blue Ridge freshman Harrison Martin didn’t see it as a guarantee.


"A lot of people said you’ll be on varsity because you’re tall and I was like ‘I don’t think it works that way," the six-foot-three Martin said.


Genetics did help — Martin’s grandfather, Lewis, played at Texas Tech and his grandmother, the former Kay Williams, was a part of Wayland Baptists’ record 131-game winning streak in the 1950s.


Blue Ridge had its best season in a decade and fell just short of making the regional tournament for the first time since 2003.


The Tigers, who went 23-7 and was the runner-up in District 15-A (I), made the playoffs for the first time in eight seasons and won a postseason game for the first time in 11 years.


Martin was in the middle of that success, earning the district’s Newcomer of the Year honor after averaging 11.4 points, a team-best 6.1 rebounds and 2.2 blocks.


The immediate impact Martin made on the Tigers made him the choice as the Herald Democrat All-Texomaland Boys Basketball Newcomer of the Year for the 2013-14 season.