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Longhorns rally past Sullivan North 44-41

JC’s Sean Lewis #24 attempts to block a shot by North’s Peyton Robinson #10.
JC’s Sean Lewis #24 attempts to block a shot by North’s Peyton Robinson #10.

By Tim Chambers

KINGSPORT—Perhaps Ringo Starr said it best in his 1971 solo song just after the Beatles breakup in 1970. “It don’t come easy” for Johnson County when it comes to earning wins on the hardwood and Sullivan North almost made it a “hard day’s night.”
But the end result would be a 44-41 victory, the same margin that the Lady Longhorns used to knock off the Golden Raiders in overtime. It was an all-important victory for the Horns who earned their second consecutive Three Rivers Conference victory. North fell to 0-4 in league play and 1-16 on the season.
“It’s a conference road win,” said JCHS’ head coach Austin Atwood. “That’s all you can say about it. This is not the way that we want to be playing this late in the year.  I very disappointed with our effort tonight.”
The Longhorns could muster only eight first quarter points but that was seven better than North’s total output. The 8-1 lead would quickly vanish in the second quarter.
North outscored Johnson County 15-8 to tie the game at 16 all at halftime. It remained knotted at 26 -26 going into the final quarter.
That’s when the Longhorns got the lift it needed.
Sean Lewis scored seven consecutive points that allowed the Horns to gain some breathing room. But North rallied on a three-ball each from Peyton Robinson and Dale Poter to take a 37-35 advantage with 2:39 left in the game.
Johnson County got a jumper from Blake Atwood to tie the game with 1:30 remaining. The silky sophomore added 6-of-6 from the foul line in the final minute that proved to be the difference in the game. He and Lewis would close the quarter with eight points each and a combined 9-of-10 from the charity stripe.
For the rest of the story, pick up a copy of this week’s Tomahawk.