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Longhorns rally past Carroll Country 72-64

By: Tim Chambers
Tomahawk Sports Editor
[email protected]

FORT CHISWELL, VA. — Johnson County’s “Fountain of Youth” helped them “spring” out a victory on Monday against Carroll County in the first round of the First Bank of Virginia Christmas Tournament played at Fort Chiswell High School.  The Longhorns outscored the Cavaliers 20-7 in the final period to earn a hard fought 72-64 win.
The Cavs (1-3) shot 55 percent from long range during the first three quarters and led 57-54 after three. But the Longhorns’ defense stymied their efforts in the fourth quarter with three sophomores, one junior and a freshman on the floor.
“We had a lot of young kids step up and play well when we needed it,” said Johnson County head coach Austin Atwood. “I thought Austin Houser’s rebounding was crucial in the win. We got some excellent guard play from Bud (Icenhour) and Blake (Atwood) and Jordan Edes hit some crucial free throws down the stretch. We didn’t have a turnover over the final six minutes and that too was a key factor in our win.”
Atwood was spot on in all his assessments.
Not only were the Cavs shooting well but they had a considerable size advantage. A pair of 6’5 post players and another 6’3 allowed them several second chance opportunities that they turned into points.
Micah Johnson lit it up from the outside scoring 21 points over the first three quarters that included 5-of-9 shooting from behind the three-point arc.  But Johnson County was able to keep pace.
They led 21-19 after one thanks to Atwood’s three-ball at the buzzer. Jose Guzman scored all of his five points in the first three minutes that got the Horns off to a good start.
But the shooting of Icenhour kept them in the contest.
He scored nine points in the first quarter and had 16 at the half. A late basket by Houser on the inside enabled them to take a 41-39 lead into the locker room at halftime.
The Cavaliers used their size advantage to surge ahead during the third quarter.
Four offensive rebounds led to eight points including two treys by Johnson. Icenhour matched that with a pair of treys. Cody Bailie and Houser would muscle a couple of baskets in the paint but the Horns trailed by three going into the final frame.
That’s when Atwood took over the game.
He hit a bucket that broke a 59-all tie then fed Icenhour for a layup to give the ‘Horns a 63-59 advantage.

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