Jumpers rally in fourth quarter to edge Middlesboro

Published 10:45 am Friday, January 5, 2024

By John Henson

Contributing Writer

PINEVILLE — It was an all too familiar ending for the Middlesboro Yellow Jackets on Thursday in the opening round of the Chain Rock Classic at Pineville High School.

Middlesboro led by after three quarters against Somerset, but the Briar Jumpers fought back in the final period to win 61-57. It was the third straight four-point loss for the Jackets.

It was a tough one. I really wanted this game for our players.  We are working so hard that we deserve to have the ball bounce our way,” Middlesboro coach John Wheat said. “I’m very pleased with how all our guys played.  They are determined to get better on every play and practice.”

Senior guard Indred Whitaker scored 21 points for the 8-2 Jumpers. Ben Godby and Aedyn Absher added 15 and 11 points, respectively.

“Give Somerset credit for knocking down some big shots,” Wheat said. :The Whitaker kid is a really nice player who has a bright future ahead of him.

Coach (Ryan) Young did a nice of job of countering some of our moves. If you were a fan of high school basketball this was the game for you.”

Senior guard Cayden Grigsby led the 4-5 Jackets with 15 points. Jerimah Beck scored 12. Trey King and Brayden Barnard each added 10 points, and King joined the 500-rebound club in the opening quarter.”

Middlesboro will play Raceland at 11 a.m. on Friday in the consolation round of the tournament.