Warriors blow by Hornets, 69-44

By GRAHAM CARR / Special to the Reporter

NORTH SHELBY – The Thompson Warriors used a big second quarter against the Chelsea Hornets to cruise to a 69-44 victory in the second round of the Shelby County Basketball Tournament at Oak Mountian on Dec. 20.

“Chelsea is very improved,” Thompson coach Patrick Davis said. “They have gotten a lot better and have been working hard. I thought our execution was a little shaky, offensively. We defended a lot better in the second half.”

The Warriors were led by Caleb Johnson with 27 points, five rebounds and five assists.

“The kid works his tail off and deserves to get some good ones,” Davis said. “He is a leader for us. He works his tail off in all aspects from the weight room to the offseason. I can’t say enough about him. He does a lot of stuff that doesn’t show up in the stat sheet every night.”

The Hornets held tough with the Warriors in the early going. Chelsea battled back from an 8-4 deficit to take a 13-12 lead after an Austin Washington layup. Thompson responded to snatch back the lead 17-15 at the end of the first quarter.

Chelsea tied the game at 17 in the opening moments of the second quarter, but Thompson came alive and went on an 8-2 run. Chelsea got within 28-25, but Thompson finished the half on an 11-0 run.

Behind Johnson’s 11 points, Thompson extended its lead to 53-36 at the end of the third quarter.

In the fourth quarter, Johnson added seven more points and Thompson ran out the clock to win 69-44.

Thompson will face Oak Mountain in the semifinals Dec. 21. The Eagles were a 35-30 winner over the Briarwood Christian Lions.