Rangers fall in OT, Lady Rangers earn easy win

Published 11:55 pm Tuesday, January 25, 2022

BY ALLEN LAMOUNTAIN
STAR CORRESPONDENT
Senior guard Joe-Z Blamo connected on a three-ball at the buzzer sending Tuesday night’s contest with Johnson County into overtime at 58-58.
The Longhorns jumped on Unaka in the overtime session, however – scoring the first nine points of the extra period – to pull out a 72-63 win at Snavely Gymnasium.
“This group is so unselfish,” Rangers head coach Aaron Dugger said. “As a group, they play as well together as any team I have ever had. They don’t count minutes and they gave an outstanding effort tonight.”
Johnson County (9-13 overall) took a 13-6 first-period lead but the Rangers (8-13 overall) closed the gap to 25-21 at the halftime break. The ‘Horns opened a 10-point, 45-35 lead going into the final stanza and once again Unaka battled back.
A trey from Graham Reece gave JC a 52-44 lead at the 4:52 mark but Unaka put together a seven-point run to make it a 52-51 contest with 1:18 remaining in regulation. In the run, Devin Ramsey had two dribble-drive layups and Landon Ramsey had an offensive rebound put-back shot.
“Slagle fouled out in regulation and that hurt us,” Dugger said. “But, once again, the effort was outstanding and it has been for some time. I enjoy coaching these guys – not because they are the most talented but they play hard together as a unit.”
The Horns hit four straight foul shots but Devin Ramsey hit a deuce in the paint and Joseph Slagle hit a jumper to make it a 56-55 game with 19.1 ticks on the clock.
Preston Greer hit a pair of free throws for JC before Blamo ducked behind a screen from Landon Ramsey and buried a trey as the horn sounded.
Greer finished with a game-high 26 points followed by 24 from Zack Parsons while Slagle finished with 18 points to top the Rangers scoring ledger. Devin Ramsey had 13 and Blamo had nine points.
GIRLS
Unaka …………68
Johnson Co…..28
The first period was competitive with Unaka holding a 17-14 advantage but buckets became very difficult for the Lady Longhorns over the next three periods. JC scored just 14 points over the last three quarters and the Lady Rangers proved to be too much for the ‘Horns to handle.
“They are very tough inside,” Lady Rangers head coach Kenneth Chambers said. “If they had anything at the guard position they would be as good as anybody. I felt like we came out early and took too many quick shots. We don’t want to play like that. We want to get the ball inside and get kick-outs. I thought it was an outstanding team effort.”
Unaka took a 34-17 halftime advantage and was never threatened. Lyndie Ramsey and Julie Simerly each had 15 points to lead the way while senior guard Macy Ensor had 12 points on four trey’s and fellow senior Kiki Forney scored 10 points while hitting a pair of treys.
Aubrey Glenn scored 10 points for Johnson County with Brookanne Hutchins adding eight.
GIRLS
Unaka 68-28
Johnson Co. (28)
Gentry 2, Glenn 10, Green 2, Hutchins 8, Baird 1, Kelly 3, Robinson 2.
Unaka (68)
Simerly 15, Ramsey 15, Whitehead 6, Taylor 2, Guy 2, Hardin 4, Forney 10, Ensor 12, Slemp 2.
Johnson Co. .. 14 3 9 2 – 28
Unaka ………… 17 17 21 13 – 68
3-point goals: JC 1 (Glenn), U 9 (Ensor 4, Simerly 3, Forney 2).
BOYS
Johnson Co. 72-63 (OT)
Johnson Co. (72)
Greer 26, Parsons 24, Reece 12, Simcox 10.
Unaka (63)
Slagle 18, Seigfried 13, D. Ramsey 8, Sexton 5, Blamo 9, L. Ramsey 8, Shomaker 2.
Johnson Co. .. 13 12 20 13 14 – 73
Unaka ………… 6 15 14 23 5 – 63
3-point goals: JC 4 (Reece 4), U 8 (Slagle 3, Seigfried 3, Sexton, Blamo).

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