Logan's Garrett Williamson gets past a Tug Valley defender on his way to the basket in the second half of Logan's 84-75 victory over Tug Valley Tuesday night at Willie Akers Arena (Boothe Davis/Captured by the Moment Photography).
Bill Lusk | WVOW Sports
LOGAN Facing a late third quarter deficit, Class AAA No. 3 Logan could have thrown in the flag and surrendered.
Instead, the Wildcats fought back and earned their first signature win of the 2022-23 season.
Logan, ranked third in Class AAA, rallied from a nine-point third quarter deficit to defeat Class A No. 9 Tug Valley 84-75 Tuesday night at Willie Akers Arena.
Scotty Browning scored 24 points and Garrett Williamson scored 21, including 15 from the foul line for the Wildcats (2-1). Logan shot 53.8 percent from the field in the second half, shot 80 percent in the fourth quarter and 51 percent for the game.
Williamson, who continues to flirt with a triple-double, filled the stat sheet once more for the Logan Wildcats finishing with seven rebounds and six assists to go along with his 21 points.
“Even looking at the stat sheet, there is more that he does than just that, he is the guy in the huddle talking, the guy motivating, he is the guy in the locker room talking,” Logan coach Zach Green said. “He is our leader, he does so much for us that the stat sheet doesn’t really portray even though he fills the stat sheet.”
The Wildcats were 25 of 31 from the free throw line, including 16 of 20 in the second half, as for Williamson he was 15 of 18 from the charity stripe including 7 of 8 in the fourth quarter to help ice the game.
"Two years ago, we lost a regional final in a game where we shot 10 of 25 from the foul line," Green said. "We made a bunch of adjustments as far as the way we shoot free throws in practice.”
“He (Garrett) has responded to that and the last two years I think he is shooting over 70 percent and I think he is probably over 80 right now,” Green said. “For a game that he is going to have the ball in his hands down the stretch of the game, it is extremely important, and he is doing a heck of a job of it right now.”
Parker Davis had 21 points, sharing team-high scoring honors with Ashton Davis who also had 21 points to go along with seven rebounds for Tug Valley (1-1).
Joey Gollihue finished with 17 points while Bradyen Ferris had 10 points and seven assists for the Panthers, who were 23 for 54 from the field and 12 of 34 on 3-pointers while connecting on 17 of 23 free throw attempts.
“You try to get balance and obviously you would like to get five kids in double figures,” Tug Valley coach Garland "Rabbit" Thompson said. “I thought Parker did fine, I thought Joey was very good and Paul gave us a little spark off the bench. All the kids played hard and that is really all you can ask.”
With 3:16 remaining in the third quarter, Joey Gollihue drained a 3-pointer to give Tug Valley a 52-43 lead prompting Logan coach Zach Green to call timeout 10 seconds later.
Out of the timeout, the Wildcats responded with an 11-2 run and tied the contest, 54-54, on Julius Clancy's layup with 1:03 to play in the third.
A pair of Ashton Davis technical free throws with 0:01 remaining in the quarter gave Tug Valley a 59-56 lead heading into the final stanza.
Logan tied the game at 59 following a Clancy 3 to start the fourth quarter. Williamson put the Wildcats up two, 61-59, with a layup with 6:46 to play before Parker Davis answered with a 3 to put Tug Valley back on top, 62-61, with 6:30 remaining.
The lead would be short lived for Tug Valley as Davis was whistled for a technical foul following the 3-point basket with 6:28 remaining.
Browning sank both technical free throws and Jarron Glick hit a short jumper with 6:15 remaining to jumpstart a 10-2 run that put the Wildcats ahead 71-64 after a pair of Williamson free throws with 3:40 to play.
Tug Valley scored the next five points to cut the deficit to two, 71-69, following another Parker Davis 3 with 3:01 to play in the game.
It would be as close as the Panthers would get as the Wildcats turned up the defensive pressure to finish the game on a 13-6 run.
“The coaching staff was onto me about getting out of the press,” Green said. “I didn’t want to (get out of it) and we got out of it in the third quarter it really benefitted them. They took control of the pace, they got into their sets.”
“We made the switch to go to a run and jump to try and speed the game back up,” Green said. “When we did, we were able to go from down nine to up nine and were able to get the game back at the pace that we like to play.”
Tug Valley scored the first five points and jumped to a quick a 5-0 lead in the first quarter on a Parker Davis jumper and Gollihue 3-pointer before Logan answered with seven unanswered points.
Clancy had a steal and layup to get the Wildcats on the board and followed it with a 3-pointer to tie the contest at 5-5. It was the first of three ties in the opening quarter.
Ivan Miller put Logan on top 7-5 after an assist from Williamson. The lead change would be the first of seven in an opening quarter that saw Logan lead 22-21 after one.
Browning's basket with 0:25 left was the start of an 11-0 Wildcat run that was capped off by a Williamson basket to give Logan its biggest lead of the contest, 31-21, with 6:24 to play before halftime.
Logan led 38-29 following Drew Berry's 3 with 2:33 left in the first half, but Tug Valley closed the quarter on a 10-1 run to even the score, 39-39, at halftime.
Using a 23-5 run to end the second quarter and start the third quarter, Tug Valley had its biggest lead of the contest, 52-43, on Gollihue's 3 with 3:16 to play in the third, but things fell apart as the Wildcats made the defensive switch to speed up the tempo and force the Panthers to play at a quicker pace than they would have liked.
Tug Valley, who committed just nine turnovers in the contest, turned the ball over four times and made 8 of 20 field goal attempts in the game's final 11:18.
"“I thought we might have dribbled it too much, tried to dribble through some things instead of passing the ball,” Thompson said. “They (Logan) shot it very well.”
“This one is probably on me, I probably lost it more than the kids did,” Thompson said. “I could have done some things different, and we will learn from it, get better, and it is only the second game of the season so there is a long way to go.”
Clancy finished with 14 points and six rebounds while Glick scored 13 points, including eight in the fourth quarter, for the Wildcats.
“We challenged Jarron (Glick) at halftime, we didn’t think he was guarding well, didn’t think he was aggressive enough,” Green said. “When you have Scotty and Garrett out there that have the ball in their hand a lot of the time there are guys that are going to help, there are guys that are going to turn and help, and Jarron put himself in the right spot a bunch of times. He was strong with it, and he responded to the challenges that we put out in front of him.”
From the tip the crowd was buzzing and the atmosphere in the Willie Akers Arena had a different feel for an early regular season matchup between two schools, who hope to playing in March at the state tournament in Charleston.
“It was a tournament like atmosphere,” Thompson said. ". I am very proud of our kids. We came in here and gave them all they wanted and hopefully Logan got something out of it because we sure did.”
In his seventh season as Logan coach, Green agreed and said everyone comes into Logan wanting to knock off the Wildcats.
“Everybody that comes to the Logan Fieldhouse wants to beat you, this is the mecca of high school basketball and people come into this gym, and they are motivated to play,” Green said. “It is not like going somewhere else and playing in a cool, dark gym where no fans are. This place is going to be rocking, the environment is great, and we got to be ready to play every game that we play here no matter who we are playing for a lot of kids this is a dream come true to come in here and beat Logan.”
Thompson is looking forward to the rematch on Jan. 7 at Tug Valley High School.
“We get to see them again and they got to come to our place,” Thompson said. “Give us about a month and we will what happens then.”
Tug Valley returns to action Friday night when they host the Pirates of Belfry (KY). It will be the first home game of the season for the Panthers, who opened the season with a 63-52 road win at Westside last Friday.
“I went and watched them the other day and they are tough,” Thompson said. "We finally get to come home, and everybody gets excited to play a home game and hopefully Friday we will be a little bit better than today.”
Logan will host Mingo Central Friday night. The game is part of the King Coal Classic and is one of eight games on tap for Friday and Saturday.
“Mingo is well coached, they got some good basketball players returning and we got to be prepared,” Green said.
Logan 84, Tug Valley 75
Tug Valley (1-1)
Davis, A. 4-8 11-13 21, Davis, P. 8-18 1-4 21, Gollihue 5-13 4-4 17, Ferris 4-7 0-0 10, Preece 1-3 0-0 3, Elia 1-3 0-0 2, Wagner 0-1 1-2 1, Marcum 0-0 0-0 0, Brewer 0-0 0-0 0, Hale 0-1 0-0 0.
Totals: 23-54 17-23 75.
Browning, S. 9-16 4-5 24, Williamson 3-7 15-18 21, Clancy 6-9 0-1 14, Glick 4-5 4-4 13, Berry 2-3 0-0 6, Browning, D. 0-5 2-2 2, Ilderton 1-3 0-1 0 2, Miller 1-3 0-0 2, Workman 0-0 0-0 0.
Totals: 26-51 25-31 84.
Tug Valley 21 18 20 16- 75
Logan 22 17 17 28- 84
3-point field goals- Tug Valley 12-34 (Davis, A. 2-6, Davis, P. 4-11, Gollihue 3-9, Ferris 2-4, Preece 1-3, Hale 0-1), Logan 7-17 (Browning, S. 2-5, Clancy 2-3, Glick 1-2, Browning, D. 0-4). Rebounds- Tug Valley 26 (Davis, A. 7), Logan 28 (Browning, S. 9). Assists- Tug Valley 13 (Ferris 7), Logan 11 (Williamson 6). Total fouls- Tug Valley 23, Logan 18. Technicals- Berry, Davis, P., Ilderton. Fouled out- Davis, P.