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Unicoi blazed by Longhorns for win

By Beth Cox
Sports Writer

It was a packed gym Monday afternoon at Johnson County Middle School as the student body watched the Longhorns take on the Unicoi Blue Devils. The games began at 1 pm.
Unicoi proved to be a tough opponent for both the boys’ and girls’ teams. The varsity girls struggled throughout the game. Unicoi’s defense was just too much for the Lady Horns. Johnson County didn’t get on the board until the second quarter.
It was simply Unicoi in charge of the game throughout the day. The Lady Horns could not get close to them. However, Coach Ricky Shaw remained positive about his team, “we are trending up. We had some good practices and the girls are doing better, but of course, we are going to have to finish strong and get the points on the board.” The final varsity score was 12 to 31. Izzy Thompson led her team with six points, followed by Coni Blankenship, Audrey Shaw, and Julia Cruise, all with two points. The girls’ JV team lost 14 to 29. Abby Dickens, Emily Houser, Julia Cruise all went away with four points, and Audrey Shaw with two points.
The JCMS boys’ coach Mark McClain shared the same sentiment of Shaw after his teams lost to Unicoi, “Unicoi has is probably the best in the region. However, we didn’t play our best. We had several turnovers and missed shots.” Unicoi varsity player Jackson Simmons dominated the boards.
Simmons had 29 out of 55 points for his team. The Longhorns lost 36-55. Darren Chappell and Jack Csillag had nine points each, Carter Jennings and Juan Mejia added seven each to the final score. Hunter Paisley had four.
The Longhorns Hunter Paisley led the JV team with 13 points for the night, followed by Chris Wilson with four and Eli Tester, Carter Atwood, and Kyle Maple two each. The JV team found some intense competition against Unicoi. It will be the most formidable team they face, so they will take all they learn and improve and be stronger going forward.
JCMS basketball resumes again at home Thursday night against Rogersville. They take on South Greene Saturday at home.

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