Henry beats the buzzer, lifts Hammond boys basketball past Southern
By Kyle Stackpole
Dec 19, 2018 | 9:40 PM
|Howard County, MD
Hammond senior guard Micah Henry talks after the Golden Bears' 58-56 win on Dec. 19.
Senior guard Micah Henry is no stranger to hitting big shots.
In Hammond boys basketball’s win over Glenelg on Friday night, Henry’s buzzer-beating 3-pointer tied the game in regulation. Henry then drilled another shot from beyond the arc to force a third overtime. Finally, in the fourth extra period, the Golden Bears outlasted the Gladiators, 97-95.
Henry’s heroics were on display again Wednesday night against Southern, as his pull-up jumper in the final moments proved to be the final basket of a 58-56 nonconference victory that keeps Hammond undefeated.
“Micah is reaping the benefits of all of the hard work he put in over the offseason,” Hammond coach Mike Salapata said. “He worked as hard as I’ve had a kid work. And you can see by his jumper. That was his liability before, and now he just shoots it with nothing but confidence.”
The game-winning basket came after Southern improbably erased a 20-point second-half deficit and tied the game on two Jay Carter foul shots with about 25 seconds to play. From there, though, everyone knew where the ball was going, and the Bulldogs still couldn’t stop him.
Standing in the right corner near midcourt, Henry delivered several crossovers to create enough space by the time he reached the elbow. Suddenly, he rose and released a shot that sailed just over the outstretched hands of his defender and swished through the net, putting Hammond (5-0) ahead, 58-56, with 2.1 seconds remaining. He difficult jumper accounted for his 32nd and 33rd points of the night.
“My coaches had trust in me to do it again, and I had trust in myself,” Henry said. “So when I caught the ball at the top of the key, I let the clock run down a little bit and I just went for my pull-up, and it went in.”
Junior forward Malik Carroll scored 23 points to lead Southern (4-2), which could not hang with Hammond in the opening two-and-a-half quarters but stormed back with a full-court press, an efficient offense and an abundance of free throws. Ultimately the Bulldogs' comeback bid came up short, but coach Will Maynard loved the fight his young team showed despite facing a hefty road deficit.“
“I really liked the way we came back,” Maynard said. “It would have been nice to finish the game, but we could have easily packed it in and said that tonight’s not our night and lose by 30. But instead, we kept fighting hard, fighting hard, fighting hard and ended up tying the game.”
Maxwell Murray's pull-up jumper with 13.2 seconds lifted the Raiders to a 70-67 road win on Dec. 14.
By Kyle Stackpole
Dec 14, 2018 | 10:15 PM
It appeared Henry would have a big scoring night from the onset, as he poured in 11 of the Hammond’s 14 points in the first quarter and then added 10 more in the second period as the Golden Bears got out to a 29-16 halftime advantage. The Golden Bears received hardly any first-half scoring production from reigning Player of the Week Jaylen Wiggins, but his four assists before the break were crucial in getting Henry into a groove.
Wiggins (17 points) found his scoring touch in the opening minutes of the third quarter, as he scored the first five points of a 7-0 run that prompted a Southern timeout. By that point, Hammond’s lead grew to 20 points.
Salapata said the team lost its energy and intensity after that, but in the end, Henry made sure the Golden Bears would remain undefeated.
“I’m obviously happy that we’re 5-0,” Salapata said. “I’m not happy the way we got to 5-0, but 5-0 is 5-0.”
Hammond (5-0) — 58, Southern (4-2) — 56
Ha — Henry 33, Wiggins 17, Asa 4, Aodu 2, Miller 2.
Southern — Carroll 23, Anderson 13, Koverman 9, Danbridge 6, Carter 4, Naumann 1.