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Cougars hold off Longhorns

JCs Jackson Earnhardt shoots over a Cougar defender for two of his 10 points in the Longhorns 56 – 62 loss to Sullivan Central Monday night. Photo by Joey Icenhour

 

Cougars 62, Longhorns 56

By Tim Chambers
Sports Editor

The close losses keep piling up for Johnson County after a close 62-56 loss to Sullivan Central on Tuesday night inside Ray Shoun Gymnasium. The Longhorns trailed 18-15 after one quarter of play and never took the lead in the game until the third quarter. They erased a 36-27 halftime deficit by going on a 7-0 run in the third quarter. A short jumper in the paint by Clayton Cross gave them their first lead, with 2:37 remaining in the frame.

Johnson County would take the lead five times in the game, but each time they did so, Central would answer. Ty Barb hit a pair of big treys while Joltin Harrison shot a perfect 9-9 from the foul line and scored ten first-quarter points.

“Anytime we got a lead, we couldn’t get a stop to extend it,” said Johnson County’s head coach Austin Atwood. “Give them credit. They have a good basketball team, and right now, we’re trying to get there.”

With some practice, the Horns probably will as they keep showing signs of becoming a frontrunner. Cross led the Horns with 15 while Zack Parsons and Jackson Earnhardt added 11 and 10 points, respectively. Trevor Gentry grabbed eight rebounds, many off of hustle plays. Harrison led the Cougars with 19, while Barb added 16. And Ethan Lane scored 14. Ethan Bower had a game-high four assists for the Horns.

Johnson County will try and get back in the win column on January 4 when they host Sullivan North at home. They lost a close one-point contest to the Golden Raiders back in early December on the road.