This article was printed in the February 1, 2017 edition
By Margaret Scott
It was more of a contest between John Saunier, of JF, and Raheem Anthony, of Liberty, trying to outscore each other and lead their teams to a victory, but it was Liberty that knocked off Jefferson Forest by five points during the Bedford County rivalry contest.
The Cavaliers tried for a fourth quarter comeback but were unable to take the lead and the Minutemen defeated JF 55-50 last Saturday.
“I am extremely pleased with how my guys are improving each game. They are really focusing on getting better in certain areas, and I think it is showing in our games,” said JF Coach Cameron Shepherd.
Liberty and Forest started out the first period going head-to-head. Every time one team would score the other would score. The first period ended in a 13-13 tie.
“A basketball season truly is a journey filled with peaks and valleys for both the individual players and the team,” said LHS Coach Randy Dunton. “Our journey has been to regain respect for the Liberty uniform by successfully competing within the five components of our system.”
Liberty stepped up in the second period and held JF to only 10 points while scoring 14.
At halftime the Minutemen led 27-23.
LHS came out in the third prepared to extend its lead. The Minutemen held Forest to only eight points while scoring 12.
“I felt like we had one of our best games of the year. We had a few costly mistakes, but overall I was really happy with how we played,” said Shepherd.
With an eight point deficit, the Cavaliers took the fourth period as an opportunity to make a comeback. Forest outscored Liberty 19-16, but it wasn’t enough to take the lead for a victory.
For JF: Ogelsby scored 6 points, Cody Whitten scored 8, Emory Willoughby scored 6, Saunier scored 12, Brad O’Donnell scored 4 and Austin Staton scored 2. Willoughby and O’Donnell scored one, three-pointer apiece. Saunier had 10 rebounds.
“The team has demonstrated a commitment to defend the principles, passion and persistence,” said Dunton.
For Liberty: Anthony scored 25 points, D’Angelo Anthony scored 2, Roman Ridley scored 11, Brendan Slocumb scored 2, Isaiah Graves scored 4, Logan Orange scored 4 and Ethan Payne Scored 2. R. Anthony scored one, three-pointer. Ridley had 12 rebounds
LCA defeated Liberty 52-48 during a Seminole District contest. This was the final time both teams will meet on the court for the 2016-17 basketball season.
The Bulldogs jumped on scoring in the first period taking a 14-6 lead over the Minutemen.
LHS came back in the second to outscore LCA 13-8 and close the eight point gap. At halftime LCA led 22-19.
With only a three-point deficit standing between the Minutemen and a victory, LHS stepped up after halftime. The third period ended in an 11-11 tie.
LCA remained three-points ahead of LHS. Liberty and LCA went back and forth in the fourth period as the Minutemen worked hard for a victory, but LCA scored one extra free throw that kept them ahead. The fourth period ended at 19-18.
For LHS: R. Anthony scored 8 points, Ridley scored 12, B. Slocumb scored 18, and Payne scored 10. B. Slocumb hit three, three-pointers.
Ridley has the night of his life fighting for his team and standing with assistant Coach Tony McKinney, who is fighting cancer. Ridley led the Minutemen in scoring and knocked off E.C. Glass with 75-74 one-point victory in overtime Tuesday, Jan. 24.
“Offensively it has been so encouraging to see the expanding contribution of scoring skills throughout the roster,” said Dunton. “The E.C. Glass game was a HS heavy weight classic with tremendous plays from both teams.”
The Minutemen had a slow start falling 19-5 in the first period. But Liberty battled hard in the second to outscore the Hilltoppers 19-8.
Glass led 27-24.
After halftime both teams prepared for a battle. The third period ended in a 19-19 tie. In the fourth period the Minutemen came back with a 25-22 victory to tie the game.
The contest went into one round of overtime and everyone in the stands cheered as the Minutemen took the game with a one point victory.
For Liberty: Ridley scored 27 points, R. Anthony scored 12, Jonathan Slocumb scored 13, B. Slocumb scored 11 and Payne scored 12.
Ridley, J. Slocumb and B. Slocumb all hit one, three-pointer apiece.
“Our hearts were full to see the outpouring of the community support for Coach Tony McKinney as he battles cancer,” said Dunton.
The Minutemen are 9-10 on the season and will host Staunton River Friday, Feb. 3 at 7:30 p.m.
The Jefferson forest boys basketball team fell 71-61 to Amherst last Thursday. The Cavaliers fought hard and have improved, but are struggling to come up with wins.
“Against Amherst, we fought until the very end. We were down by 20 to start the 4th quarter, and we were able to cut the lead to 6 with a few minutes left,” said Shepherd.
Amherst took a huge lead over Forest in the first period scoring 21 and holding the Cavaliers to 8.
JF battled back in the second to close the gap an outscored the Lancers 19-12.
At halftime Amherst led 32-27.
Amherst came out in the third and scored 22 points to extend its lead and allowed JF only 8.
But Forest came back in the fourth period scoring a game high of 26 points and held Amherst to 16.
For JF: O’Donnell scored 15 points, Saunier scored 13, Whitten scored 13, Ogelsby scored 9, Swaney scored 9 and Austin Simms scored 2. O’Donnell and Swaney scored one, three-pointer apiece.
The Cavaliers are 3-18 on the season and will host Brookville Monday, Feb. 6.
The Staunton River boys basketball team fell 57-44 to rival William Byrd in the second contest of the season.
The Terriers started the first period scoring 15 points and allowing River only 5. The Golden Eagles battled back in the second period, but Byrd sank 14 points while River sank 8.
At halftime WB led 29-13.
In the third, River stepped up its pace and was able to score 12 points, but the Terriers also scored 12.
River outscored Byrd in the fourth, but it wasn’t enough for a victory. The Golden Eagles scored 19 and held Byrd to 16.
For River: Kalip Jones scored 23 points, Shell scored 3, Will Clary scored 2, Josh Thomas scored 10 and Hubbard scored 4. Jones sank two, three-pointers.
The Golden Eagles are 6-15 on the season and will travel to Liberty on Friday, Feb. 3.