By Beth Cox
Friday night at Ray Shoun Gym, the Lady Longhorns suffered another heartbreaking loss this time to Happy Valley.
Once again, the Lady Horns got off to a slow start in the first quarter by allowing Happy Valley to jump ahead with some quick threes by sharpshooters Kadie Bailey and Autumn Henegar.
For the Longhorn offense, shooting continues to be a factor with both missed opportunities and baskets.
By the end of the first quarter, the Lady Warriors were ahead 12-7. The second quarter Johnson County missed some good shots and started second-guessing themselves when taking it to the board, so began the safety pattern of passing too much and not taking the ball to the basket. The Lady Horns were down 11-18, going into halftime.
In the second half, Tolley went into a press, and the excitement started happening. The Lady Warriors had a tough time getting the ball down the court, and Johnson County seized the moment by putting up twenty-seven points on the board in the second half of the game. Happy Valley defense was weak and got the Warriors into foul trouble.
Johnson County’s Emmy Miller was a rock star at post fighting through the strong defense of Happy Valley, adding the game-high 13 points with 12 of those points made in the second half of the game.
Taylor Cox followed Miller’s pattern scoring the majority of her eleven points in the second half. Sadie Stout added five points from the foul line by driving the ball to the basket where Happy Valley’s defensive approach was to foul. Abby Cornett made three points for the night with Natalie Winters contributed two all from the foul line. Taylor Parsons added six, four from free throws. Rhiannon Icenhour added two points coming off the bench.
As in the past, Johnson County comes back after halftime as a new team and fighting for the win. The second half of Friday’s game was intense, and it looked like the Lady Horns had the opportunity for the win.
Unfortunately, wins come down to who can put the crucial points on the board,
and this time it was Happy Valley.
Coach Leon Tolley expressed his frustration about his team’s offense, “I am at a loss to describe how we are playing right now. Our offense is a train wreck even with devoting more time to offense in practice.” Tolley also gave credit to the strong defense his team has been playing. “To the girls’ credit they haven’t let the offensive woes affect them on defense because that is what has given us a chance to win.”