Last second shot downs Hampton

By Wes Holtsclaw
STAR CORRESPONDENT

   Michael Price saved the day for Unicoi County on Saturday night.
   Down by one with under :15 seconds remaining, Unicoi County missed two shots with :05 seconds left in the fourth quarter against Hampton. Price then played a big factor, as his last-second shot went in at the horn, and the Blue Devils recorded a 57-56 victory in the Grindstaff Classic played at White / VanHuss gym.
   Adam Miller was sent to the foul line to shoot two shots, he missed them both and Price took the rebound. Driving down the court he looked up to the clock and took a desperation shot as the buzzer sounded.
   "It was pretty scary," said Price who finished with 11 points, "I was coming down the court dribbling, and looked up to see one second left on the scoreboard. I threw it up and prayed."
   It went in.
   "This was something we needed," he said, "We definitely needed this. We've had our turns at last second shots, this is just a boost."
   Hampton had held the lead throughout the majority of the half, although it came down to one possession.
   "We've been in this situation a lot this year," said Unicoi County coach John English, "We were kind of due this one. Hampton outplayed us, they really killed us on the boards and hit some big shots."
   "Michael has struggled this year offensively, and he hits the big bucket at the end of the game. We really didn't have anything else to do but get the rebound and take it down the court and make the shot. Luckily, he was able to make it."
   Unicoi exploded onto the court taking an 11-2 advantage after the first period, and through the aspects of technical fouls and the emotional crowd held onto it through the half.
   Hampton battled back in the third behind a strong effort from Jacob Culler and Greg Osborne, who led the squad with 17 and 18 respectively.
   It was just a throw of faith for the Devils, who took the win.
   "Two nights in a row, we've lost to free throws," said Hampton coach Bud Hazelwood. "We came out flat early and got behind. I benched everybody, we've been playing real hard. I thought we had control with a couple of minutes, but I give Unicoi credit they kept us in the game late."
   Josh Hensley led Unicoi with 14 points, while White tallied 12.
   TOURNAMENT NOTES: A Tournament Wrap-up will be featured in tomorrow's paper.