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Reserves lift HCHS to 62-42 win over E.C. Glass

Halifax County High School’s starters seemed unable to do much of anything right in the first four minutes of Thursday night’s game against E.C. Glass High School.

Errant passes, poor shooting and other miscues opened the door for the Hilltoppers to race to a 10-0 lead.

At that point, Comets Head Coach Larry Epperly went to his bench, putting reserves Trelanne Johnson, Dakota Delaware and Kory Lennon on the floor.

The Comets immediately scored four points on a pair of free throws from Johnson and a bucket from Delaware. Gradually, the Comets whittled away at the Hilltoppers’ lead.

Halifax County got the lead on a free throw by Lennon with 1:53 left in the second quarter during an 11-0 run that allowed the Comets to forge a 23-17 lead at halftime.

The Comets never looked back, running away to an easy 62-42 road win that evened their season record at 4-4.

Halifax County’s bench accounted for 40 of the team’s 62 points, with Johnson leading the team in scoring with a game-high 22 points, half of which came at the charity stripe.

“After I hit a couple of shots I got a lot of confidence,” Johnson explained.

“My main game is to drive (to the basket), but I felt confident in my jump shot tonight. I was hitting.”

So were his fellow reserves.

Having his best night of the season, reserve point guard Tevin Edmunds chipped in seven points, Delaware contributed six points and Lennon scored five points.

“We couldn’t have won without our bench,” Epperly said after the win that gave the Comets a sweep of their two meetings with the Hilltoppers.

“Kory Lennon, Dakota Delaware, Tevin Edmunds and Trelanne Johnson all came in and gave us some huge minutes and huge contributions. They really got the job done tonight.”

The Comets appeared to be in deep trouble early after the Hilltoppers, with the help of a pair of three-pointers from Akeem Jones raced out to a 10-0 lead. Epperly remained patient and didn’t call a timeout.

“I didn’t call a timeout because we knew that all we had to do was make a couple of shots and things would take off,” Epperly explained.

“From that point, we outscored them by 30 points.”

A good defensive effort played a role in the Comets’ win. The Comets’ pressure defense gave E.C. Glass High School some problems, and the Comets were able to get some easy baskets of a number of steals to pad their cushion.

“We trapped them in the short corner, and got a lot of steals,” Epperly noted.

“I don’t know how many steals we had, but I know it was in the double digits. We were able to get some easy baskets because of it.”

E.C. Glass cut the Comets’ lead to three points at the start of the third quarter, but back-to-back three-pointers from Keyshawn Johnson, who finished the game with 12 points, allowed the Comets to extend their lead back to nine points.

Later, holding a seven-point cushion, the Comets went on a 7-0 run capped by a basket from Delaware to take a 40-27 lead with 2:22 left in the third quarter. E.C. Glass was never able to mount a serious challenge after that point.

Edmunds, who was 6-6 at the charity stripe in the last two and a half minutes of the game led a good free-throw shooting effort as the Comets hit 10 out of a dozen free throws in the final 2:38 of the game to seal the win.