, Corbin, KY

Local Sports

March 24, 2014

Clutch shooting lifts Scott County past Johnson Central

CORBIN — By Les Dixon / Staff Writer

LEXINGTON — Billy Hicks' Scott County Cardinals were in a 49-all tie with Johnson Central with less than five minutes to go in the ball game before his team pulled through thanks to some clutch shooting from the floor and free-throw line.

The Cardinals overcame foul trouble, and managed to pull out a 64-55 victory over the 15th Region Eagles.

Scott County was led by guard Trent Gilbert’s 29 points, as he finished the game a perfect 14-of-14 from the free-throw line. The cardinals shot 20-of-55 from the floor, and 20-of-24 from the charity stripe. They were able to pull off the nine-point win despite turning the ball over 18 times.

Johnson Central was led by Shane Hall’s 21 points and 14 rebounds. The Eagles shot 18-of-56 from the floor and a dismal 19-of-32 from the free-throw line.

“I tell you, another tough ball game against a tough bunch of kids,” Scott County’s Hicks said. “Gotta give Johnson Central credit. We had a tough time putting the ball in the basket.”

Scott County took advantage of a two-of-13 shooting effort from the Eagles in the first quarter, and managed to take a 16-8 lead into the second frame, as Gilbert hit two three-pointers and converted on an old-fashioned three-point play to score nine points during the game’s first eight minutes.

Gilbert continued his hot play by adding nine more points in the second quarter, and finished the first half hitting five-of-nine shot attempts and three, three-pointers. Johnson Central got as close as four points (24-20) midway through the period before seeing Gilbert hit another three-pointer late in the first half to give his team a 31-24 edge at halftime.

The Eagles shot only seven-of-27 from the floor during the first 16 minutes while Scott County was 11-of-29.

Johnson Central began to chip away at the Cardinal lead during the third quarter with Shane Hall starting to take over in the paint by scoring four points during the quarter. Teammate Braxton Blair scored with a one-handed leaner with :01.7 left in the period, cutting his team’s deficit to three points (43-40) with eight minutes remaining in regulation.

The Eagles tied the game at 49 apiece after two free throws by Hall at the 4:44 mark, but the Cardinals followed with a three-pointer by Hones Jones, and Johnson Central never got closer than three points again the remainder of the game.

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