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On the run

Shelbyville senior guard Josh Williams made the game-winning shot against Connersville Saturday at home. Williams finished the contest with 21 points as the Golden Bears won in OT.

By KRIS MILLS - kmills@shelbynews.com

Prior to Shelbyville's game with Connersville Saturday, players and coaches watched film of last season’s contest. For those who do not remember, the Spartans won on a last-second shot — a drive to the right side of the basket — to give CHS a 35-34 win.

Josh Williams did not forget. He took that memory with him into the game. The Shelbyville senior guard, who finished the night with 21 points while finding his stroke from the outside, gave the Spartans a taste of their own medicine.

After scoring on an out-of-bounds play under their own basket, Connersville took a 59-58 lead in the contest with under 10 seconds left in overtime.

Williams took the ensuing inbounds pass, dribbled the full length of the court and shot a running floater (off the backboard) on the right side of the hoop, similar to the one that cost SHS the game last season, just before the final buzzer to give the Golden Bears the 60-59 win.

The teams were tied at 50-all at the end of regulation.

“I was just glad I got that shot off and glad it went in,” Williams said with a smile after the game. “After the Rushville game (poor shooting) I have just been putting shots up in the gym.”

Shelbyville (3-1) senior guard Zach Kuhn, who was honored before the game for breaking the all-time scoring record, entered the game Saturday with 1,388 points. Harry Larrabee’s record was 1,370. He had 28 points Friday and 21 more Saturday despite fouling out in the fourth quarter. He said it was difficult to sit on the bench in overtime.

“It was tough (sitting on the bench). I had to gather myself and try to coach,” Kuhn said. “Being on the sideline, I was trying to get the bench involved. Everyone stepped up and made big plays.

“No one has the ability to get down the floor and rise up like Josh. He is just a freak athlete. He hit a ton of those in middle school. When I saw that (at the end of the game), it felt like we were kids again.”

A special message was played over the speakers Saturday before the game. Larrabee congratulated Kuhn for passing his mark at Columbus North one day before.

"I love that guy," Kuhn said of Larrabee. 

The Golden Bears, who ended a three-game losing streak to the Spartans, led 26-23 at halftime after a 14-14 tie at the end of one. Williams also had a floater to beat the buzzer at the end of opening half.

SHS head coach Ryan Mack said both teams play extremely hard against one another each meeting. Saturday’s classic was no different.

“It is just a great matchup,” he said. “They may have the edge with coaching but both teams have guys who play extremely hard.”

Senior guard DJ Kramer and junior forward Luke Asher, who had a big block late in the game, each finished with six points in the win.

Senior guard Noah Belt led the Spartans (2-2) with 17 points. Six-foot-seven forward Jacob Brown, who gave Connersville the go-ahead basket in overtime, had eight points and eight rebounds.

The Golden Bears return to action Friday at New Castle in their first Hoosier Heritage Conference game.

Kris Mills is the Sports editor of The Shelbyville News. Follow Kris on Twitter @KrisMills37.

Shelbyville vs. Connersville

Final Score: 60-59 SHS in OT

Player of Game: SHS senior Josh Williams