DANDRIDGE — It would have been easy for the Jefferson County boys basketball team to overlook a winless Seymour team on Tuesday night as they prepare for a big matchup against Greenville on Thursday.
However, the Patriots did the complete opposite, blowing out the Eagles 78-48 in rout to their 12th win of the season. Jeff County improved to 6-1 in conference play and remains tied for first place in the IMAC with Sevier County.
“We’ve had games where we have done a better job with things like making the extra pass and defending but in the end, it’s a win in the IMAC,” Jefferson County coach Matt Johnson said. “That’s a big deal.”
Jefferson County was led in the game by Kobe Parker, who had 32 points. After just five points in the first quarter, Parker took off, scoring 20 in the second and third quarters. Parker hit five 3-pointers to go along with five 2-pointers.
“He (Kobe) has the ability to create and make tough shots,” Johnson said. “He has the ability to make it hard on the other team. I thought a couple times they tried to put a post guy on him, and he was able to get by and make a basket. He has a lot of dimensions on the offensive side of the ball that really helps us.”
Tommy Griffin added 15 points for the Patriots while Jacob Thompson had 13 points. It was Jeff County’s fourth win in as many games.
“We talked about as a team that we have reached a spot and are tied for first in the league,” Johnson said. “They have earned that too. We wanted to make sure tonight that, regardless of what happened offensively, we were not going to be outworked defensively. We felt like if we could do that, it would all work out favorably.”
With the loss, Seymour falls to 0-18 on the season. They were led in the game by Avery Bryson, who had 20 points. They will look for their first win of the year on Friday against South Doyle.
Much like the girls game, Jeff County jumped out to a quick advantage, going up 10-0 after 3-pointers from Thompson and Jordan Mullins.
But the offense slowed for the second half of the quarter, allowing Seymour to make it 13-7 with under a minute to go. But two quick baskets gave the Patriots a 10-point lead after one.
The second quarter saw Jeff County take over, scoring 20 points while holding Seymour to 12.
They lead by 18 at the half. The third quarter was more of the same with Parker taking the game over and keeping the Patriots lead at 18. Jeff County scored 23 points in the third.
With the reserves in for the fourth quarter, Jeff finished the game on a 9-0 run to win by 30.
“I think that the kids have been playing very well defensively,” Johnson said. “I felt like there were ups and downs early on in the season. Now, things have smoothed out and things are a lot more consistent. The kids know each other better and are very unselfish.”
Jeff County will be back in action on Thursday as they take on Greenville for a non-conference matchup.
Greenville comes into the game with a 10-3. That game is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.