Cougars win on Cain 3-pointer

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By Dwane Wilder

JACKSBORO—Tucker Cain’s 3-pointer from the left corner with 1.2 seconds left last Friday night carried Campbell County High School’s varsity boys to a 72-71 homecoming victory over District 3-AAA basketball rival Knoxville Central.


Darin Gillenwater led all scorers with 24 points for the Cougars (3-7 district, 7-12 overall). Cain, Trey Torres and Roston Letner added 12 points each for Campbell County, followed by Seth Pebley with eight and Dallas Griffith and Nick Bailey two each. Mitchell and Randolph paced Central with 15 each.

“I’m just extremely proud of each kid buying in (to the game plan) and playing together,” said Campbell County coach Matt Housley.

Cain hit two of his three 3-point attempts and hit all four of his free throws.

“Obviously, I’m very proud of Tucker. He hadn’t played up to his potential all game and had a few turnovers, but showed a lot of maturity and bouncing back and not letting that affect his confidence.”

The Cougars jumped out to a 7-point advantage in the opening quarter. However, by halftime Campbell County was clinging to a 1-point lead, 38-37. The lead switched hands several times in the second half, with Central pulling in front 58-54 going into the fourth quarter.

The Bobcats had just taken another lead when Cain came through with his last-second heroics. The win avenged a 58-51 loss at Central on Dec. 3.

“Back in December, when we got down, I don’t think we were tough enough to fight back, and Friday we got back in it because of making the tough plays,” said Housley.

Campbell County shot 77 percent (24 of 31) from the free throw line and 53 percent (21 of 40) from the field. The Cougars shot 33 percent (6 of 18) from beyond the 3-point arc. Gillenwater, who missed all but one of his 3-point attempts, still managed to shoot 45 percent from the field.

“Trey played a very efficient game with 12 points on only two field goal attempts. Darin did a great job of attacking and stayed aggressive even when his shot wasn’t falling early. Roston did a great job on both ends and was 6 of 8 from the (free throw) line. Darin and Tucker got two steals in a row, and Trey got the ball tip which Tucker jumped on at half court.”

Torres made a half dozen assists, while Pebley and Griffith dished out three each.

“I’m so proud to be a part of their lives, and I’m excited to see how the rest of our season unfolds,” said Housley.