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The GCHS boys’ team kept their wining streak alive to open the Jessamine County Invitational.
The Braves defeated East Jessamine 76-66 on Dec. 18, stretching their record to 6-0 to start the season.
Mike Davis led the Braves with 25 points, 12 rebounds and five blocks.
“Getting Davis settled in and stepping up to give us an inside presence is important to us and important to him as well,” coach Ron Kinmon said.
In a back and forth game, the Braves relied on a run in the third quarter to build their lead and held on in the fourth quarter for the 10-point win. Kody Thompson scored 10 of his 21 points in the third quarter to help the Braves add to their lead.
“We hit our free throws down the stretch to maintain our lead,” Kinmon said.
Grant County couldn’t keep their win streak going, losing to Woodford County 54-50. The Braves lead the game for the first three quarters, but Woodford County used their athleticism to give the Braves their first loss.
“They are very athletic and wore us down,” Kinmon said. “They hurt us on the backboards in the second half. We were upset because it was the first loss of the season, but we learned we need to be physical and play with the same intensity at all times. We can’t take plays off.”
Davis scored 10 points and had two rebounds, while Jared Livingood scored seven points, had three steals and dished out two assists.
The Braves got right back to winning in their next game against Pineville with a 62-59 victory on Dec. 20.
“It was extremely close,” Kinmon said. “We knew it was going to be a close game. They made a run and had us in the second half, but we never relinquished the lead and hit our free throws.”
Davis again led the Braves with 16 points and Livingood had 11 points. The coaches wondered how the Braves would come back following their first loss, but the players showed they would not let one loss slow down their success.
“We were curious how we would respond,” Kinmon said. “We came out focused and did a good job. We handled adversity and played a good game.”
The Braves followed up their win over Pineville with a loss in overtime to Garrett County, falling 81-72 on Dec. 20.
Cody Kinman sent the game into overtime with a bucket at the buzzer. He led the Braves with 24 points, while Thompson scored 18 points.
“I thought we played hard,” Kinmon said. “We got tired in the fourth quarter and didn’t get any breaks down the stretch to help us.”
Although the Braves came away with two losses, they also gained the experience of back-to-back games and a tournament atmosphere.
“We’re taking away the fact we played good competition for four games and played four close games,” Kinmon said. “We learned what we need to do to be successful. I’m happy with where we’re at and we’re going to continue to get better.”