Highlander Jordan Johnson hit one of two at the line and Shavon Stoves stole an inbound toss in the final seconds of FPCA’s game Saturday against Deerfield Windsor in Albany, helping the Highlanders eke out a 58-57 victory.
It was the Knights’ first loss of the season and a come-from-behind win for the Highlanders, who trailed by 11 at the half and lost DJ Felder and AJ Ansley to fouls in the fourth."We were in deep trouble," Highlander coach David Jones said. "The game was tied with about 30 seconds left and we decided to take one last shot. The boys moved the ball well and Jordan had the ball in his hands with about 12 seconds left and was working the clock down. He made a hard dribble right and came back to the left and as he shot the ball, a kid, playing good man-to-man defense, fouled him."
The coach said the usually steady-handed Johnson missed the first free throw, but hit the second dead center through the net.
"When they inbounded the ball, Mike Brown did a good job on the inbounder by really getting up and blocking his vision, and Stoves intercepted the pass at mid court," Jones said.
The victory puts the Highlander boys at 15-1 for the season. They hosted Providence Christian last night, will host Citizens Christian on Friday and travel to Furtah Prep on Saturday. As the squad gets to the heart of the Georgia Independent School Association Region 2-A play, the coach said he is looking ahead to what he expects will be another big challenge: Bethesda.
"Naturally, as a coach you take one game at a time," Jones said. "But you still look down the road and know what is coming up. We went and scouted them before Christmas and they are an excellent ball club. They are big, strong and they press, run and shoot the ball well."
The coach said the key will be to avoid mistakes and hit the rebounds to stop the Blazers’ running game.
He admitted Deerfield Windsor was the first team to beat them at the boards and said to secure a win against a team like Bethesda, they must do better.
"They beat us like we were a rented Louisiana mule," he said. "It was bad."
Johnson ended the night with 18 and Felder knocked in 12 points.
Lady Highlanders 28, Lady Knights 58
The Lady Highlanders met their toughest challenge, losing 58-28 to the Lady Knights. The Lady Knights took a 17-point lead by the half. A lead the Hinesville girls could not recover from. Lady Highlander Shaquioa Crockett led the girls with 11 points for the night.