Jr. Longhorns fend off upset-minded Hunter

from staff reports

   Supremely balanced in the scoring department, Johnson County got past the upset-minded Hunter Tigers 57-50 in middle school boys basketball action on Monday night.
   Ryan Humphrey accounted for 11 points, followed by Jesse Gilbert with 10 for the unbeaten Jr. Longhorns (5-0). Matt Story tossed in nine points, while Justin Harmon and Josh Jarvis aided the Johnson County cause by chipping in eight apiece.
   "We played an outstanding game against an undefeated team," said Tigers coach Mike Dorsey. "They were taller than we were at four of the five positions. We got behind early trying to throw over their half-court trap. But we didn't quit and that is what I am the most proud of."
   Up 20-8 at the end of the first quarter, Johnson County watched as Hunter pulled within two points (29-27) at the half. The Tigers (2-6) didn't lose any ground in the third quarter as the score was 38-36 in favor of the 'Horns heading into the final stanza.
   Johnson County, though, gained a little more breathing room in the fourth period by shooting well from the free-throw line (10-of-15) and getting a key three-pointer from Matt Story with just over a minute to play. The Jr. Horns were ahead by three points when Story nailed the shot.
   "We were just outmanned," Dorsey said. "Coach Julian Crews has done a wonderful job of preparing these boys for the season."
   Jeff Wilson was the main man for Hunter, scoring a game-high 19 points and pulling down at least 15 rebounds.
   "Jeff Wilson played an outstanding game," Dorsey said. "And although it doesn't show up in the box score, Aaron Bradford & Bryant Collins stepped up with some tough defense against players much taller than they were, filling in for the four players we had missing.
   "We played hard and were on the floor getting loose balls, taking charges and boxing out."
   Bradford and Michael Carpenter contributed nine points each for the Tigers, who made 13-of-31 shots from the floor and 15-of-24 from the foul line.
   The Jr. 'Horns were 17-of-54 from the field and 17-of-29 on free throws.