KC Eagles Grab Road Victory at Novinger
By David Sharp
Knox County (1-1) overcame a determined Novinger Wildcat team with their strong inside presence and tough defense and went on to a 79-30 victory in December 12, 2008 varsity boys’ action. Dennis Dent scored a game high 24 points. Dent and sophomore center Justin Reeves pulled down 12 rebounds each. Justin Reeves was in double figures with ten KCHS points.
Mitchel Penn helped jump start the Eagle offense with hard nosed drives to the rim. Penn finished with 17 Knox County points. Novinger (1-3) came to play and put the first six points on the board.
Tristan Lonberger came off the bench early in the first quarter and provided a lift to a flat Eagle attack. The Eagles stole the basketball nine times on the night. Two of the thefts sparked a14-2 run to a 14-8 Knox County lead with 1:29 remaining in the first quarter.
Novinger guard Aric Luman was the quickest man on the floor. Luman scored or set up most of the Wildcat’s 13 first quarter points. Knox County ratcheted up their intensity. The Eagles were able to get Aric Luman in foul trouble. Luman was assessed his fourth foul with 18 seconds to go in period one. Knox County led 16-10 at the time.
With their best player on the bench, Novinger had a tough time handling Knox County ball pressure. Knox County went on a 29-5 second quarter tear and led 47-18 at intermission.
Aric Luman scored all four Wildcat points in the third quarter. Knox County dominated the boards, pulling down 43 total rebounds, with 25 coming on their end of the court. Knox County outscored the home team 23-4 in the third period and led 70-22 after three quarters of basketball.
Lance McMahon tossed in a Knox County three ball with 30 seconds to play in the game, closing the book on a 79-30 Eagle win. Knox County limited their turnovers to ten on the night. Lucas Hudson dished out three of the Eagles’ eight assists and finished with nine points.
Brett Wilkerson scored four points and led the Eagles with three of their nine team steals. Neither team shot free throws well in the early season contest. Knox County had not played in ten days due to weather. Novinger played their previous game on December 5.
Knox County held the Wildcats to six field goals and four home run balls defensively. The Eagles put in 29 field goals and sank three trifectas. The Eagles went 12-28 from the line in a foul plagued contest. Novinger was 6-14 from the charity stripe.
“(Tristan) Lonberger is a guy who will help us throughout the season,” said KCHS coach Jesse Crawford of early game happenings. “He doesn’t have a lot of varsity experience, but he plays hard. We have to keep attacking the glass. (Justin) Reeves and Dennis Dent had double-doubles down low.”
“I would love to have Aric Luman on our team. He is a quick guard,” said Crawford. “If he doesn’t get in foul trouble, (Novinger) plays with us for three quarters. Our guards still need a lot of development. This was a good win for us.”
Aric Luman led Novinger with 15 points. Lance McMahon scored five Knox County points. Brett Bryant and Parker Dixson scored three points each. Tristan Lonberger scored two points and Joe Rice added one point.