Jones’ left-handed layup lifts Montrose past GJ

Jones' left-handed layup lifts Montrose past GJ

Grand Junction’s Casey Burns rises to the basket for a layup Friday night during the first half of the Tigers’ game against Montrose at Grand Junciton High School.

Before the Grand Junction boys basketball team could make up a 13-point third quarter deficit, there was Montrose guard Cameron Jones, happy a defender made him go left.

With just more than a minute remaining in the game, Jones dashed to the basket and finished by getting fouled while scooping the ball in for a layup. He missed the free throw, but teammate Nathan Hawley grabbed an offensive rebound and put the ball back in.

Grand Junction could not recover from the four-point burst as visiting Montrose won 57-54.

“I saw the way he was positioned and decided to take him,” said Jones, who finished with a game-high 26 points.

Jones, a righty, is not afraid to go left.

“Not really,” he said. “I’ll go anywhere.”

Broderick Robinson led Grand Junction with 17 points.

Casey Burns added 16 for the Tigers.

Grand Junction trailed 37-24 late in the third quarter, but cut into the lead with two 3-pointers by Shane Powers.

Even after Montrose’s quick four points in the fourth quarter put the Indians ahead 50-44, the Tigers, with a minute left, managed a five-point play of sorts: Powers hit another 3-pointer and Burns, who on the play was fouled away from the ball, followed with a pair of free throws.

Grand Junction (10-7, 3-2 Southwestern League) showed an ability to play top-notch hoops at will. But that’s not going to cut it for coach Dutch Johnson.

“They say it all the time, but you have to put 32 minutes together,” Johnson said. “We had momentary lapses and let them get big runs and leads on us. We have enough leadership that we shouldn’t have to kick it in when we’re down.”

Montrose’s Angelo Youngren, who finished with 14 points, hit four free throws to put the game away for the Indians (15-3, 4-1).

Youngren was 6 of 6 from the foul line late in the fourth quarter.

Of course, he was prepared by his Thursday night visualizations before falling asleep.

He said he pictured the same scenario that unfolded in the real game: Walls of fans screaming, just a minute left and free throws to ice the game.

“Exact same,” Youngren said.  “Everyone was screaming at me.”

He said he hit about 20 straight free throws in his vision.

“You can’t miss in a vision,” he said.


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