By Tim Chambers
It was a fitting way to start the season for head coach Devin Shaw and his Junior High Longhorns. They gave him an impressive 47-22 win on Thursday night in his first game as varsity coach at Johnson County Middle School.
He was the seventh grade coach last season, so getting to know his kids wasnt an issue. They didnt miss a beat while jumping out to a 16-6 first quarter lead.
That was probably the most unselfish basketball that weve played since those kids have been together, said Shaw. Lucas Phillips scored 21 points, but thats the best that Ive ever seen him pass the ball. The defense set the tone by generating steals and that helped us get our offense going. We preach to play for your buddy and thats what they did tonight. Every single player on this team wants to win. They dont care who does what. They all want to do their part so Im proud of them for that.
Phillips did his part in the first half. His nine points in addition to baskets by Darrin Cunningham, Dylan Simcox and Andrew Dugger allowed them to take a 10-point advantage after one.
Philips continued to shoot well in the second stanza, scoring 10 points including two treys, but their defensive play would allow them to build a comfortable advantage.
Cunningham scored a couple of baskets off two of six steals in the quarter. Jared Kimble did his part by scoring a deuce, grabbing four rebounds and collecting three steals.
They held the Rangers to a single free throw, building a 32-7 lead at the half. That six-minute span pleased Shaw.
We came out ready to play and you love to see that as a coach, added Shaw. We took care of business in the second quarter. We were getting after it on the press.
The Rangers were able to whittle into the lead some in the third quarter as Shaw went deep down his bench. But the final outcome had been decided by then.
For the rest of the story, pick up a copy of this week's Tomahawk.
By Tim Chambers