The Rossview Hawks picked up their first district win of the season on Jan. 7, defeating Montgomery Central 84-62. The Hawks held a 20-point advantage at the halftime break and refused to let go in the second half.
Despite the Indians coming off of their largest point total of the season, Rossview kept MCHS, as well as leading scorer Isaac Rankhorn, in check. The senior guard had poured in a career-high 31 points just three games prior, yet was limited to nearly half of that on 5-for-15 shooting from the floor.
“(Rankhorn’s) a very good player, and obviously he’s one of the targets when you look at their team,” said Rossview coach Johnny Jackson. “We talked about containing (Rankhorn) and doing a good job of keeping him off the boards to limit second chance opportunities.”
The Indians maintained intensity in the second half and refused to go down quietly, however. With a sizable visiting crowd, Montgomery Central coach Mike Brown made sure his players were fighting until the final buzzer.
“I tell the [players] the same thing: never give up, play every play like it’s the last play of your life, don’t worry about the score, and never stop fighting.”
Tim Williams led all scorers with 19 points for the Hawks, while Rankhorn scored 18 for the Indians. Rossview has now won two of their last three games; a far cry from the 0-11 start in 2019. The Hawks have lost six games by four points or less this season.
“If we had some older, experienced guys we would flip that around and have a winning record.” Jackson said. “We don’t have those guys, but the ones we do have are getting thrown into the fire. We play one of the better schedules in the state, and I feel like [the players] are hungry right now.”
Montgomery Central (2-11) went on to drop a 54-52 heartbreaker at Springfield on Jan. 10. The night before, Rossview (2-13) fell 71-54 at Henry County.
Rossview (84): Tim Williams 19, Spencer Mimms 13, Ronald Jessemy 10, Julian Hatfield 7, Bryant Rippy 7, Eli Colvin 6, Terrell Arnold 5, Bradley Seneca 5, KJ Montague 4, Logan Prairie 4, Deontra Dasher 2, Kobie Handy 2.
Montgomery Central (62): Isaac Rankhorn 18, Asante Wimberly 15, Michael Payton 13, Tyrone Hite 7, AJ Johnson 5, Parker Denton 2, Michael Lobdell 2.