Junior Boys Basketball Brings Home 4A-5 District Championship Titles

The junior high boys basketball brings home Regular Season District Championship and District Tournament Championship titles!

Sarah Hester, Editor

Your Lonoke Junior High Boys Basketball brought home the 4A-5 District Tournament Championship trophy, on Saturday, February 11, 2023, in Heber Springs! The team went 14-1 prior to post-season play and went into the district tournament as the first seed and as the Regular Season District Champions. The team beat Heber Springs 47 to 33 in the second round of the conference tournament on Thursday,  February 9, 2023, securing them a spot in the championship game. The Lonoke Jackrabbits played in the championship game on Saturday, February 11, 2023, against the Clinton Yellowjackets in Heber Springs, Arkansas. The members of the community and the Lonoke Junior High Cheer team participated in a send-off for the Junior Boys as they headed to the District Tournament Championship game. Head coach, Jeremy Brown, expressed great amounts of appreciation, “…the community has been great! They showed up and showed out all year for them Rabbits.” The team successfully tipped off the ball at the start of the game. Lonoke’s Khalon Calhoun and Matthew Bonds put a combined total of five points on the board in the first quarter. D’Mareon Eason and Matthew Bonds scored a combined fifteen points during the second quarter for a total of twenty points scored in the first half. Eason, Bonds, and Jaylen Graham each scored some three-point baskets during the third quarter. During the fourth quarter, the Jackrabbits took two big and impressive charges. The Jackrabbits went into overtime after ending the fourth quarter with a tied score of 44 to 44. Freshman, Peyton Wallace, successfully made a three-point basket in overtime. The last twenty seconds of overtime were crucial for Lonoke. The Clinton Yellowjackets scored a couple of points to tie the game up once more. In the final twenty seconds of the game, Lonoke’s freshman, Matthew Bonds, made a contested, game-winning lay-up to end the game 49 to 47. Matthew Bonds exclaimed, “I laid it in. It was like my heart was like beating super fast and when I made it I got to jumping up and down. I was very excited. I feel like I did my job for my team.” “Just Rabbits being Rabbits to end the game,” Coach Brown commented just following the championship win.

Jeremy Brown described, “All the boys’ hard work paid off in the last 20 seconds of the game…As a coach, at that moment, I stepped out of the way.” Brown continued, “We have a great group of boys that play the game unselfishly. I knew they would find the right shot and it would go down.” It has been twelve long years since the Lonoke Junior High Boys’ Basketball team became the District Tournament Champions and the team, as well as the coaches are nothing shy of thrilled and proud to be adding a new trophy to Gina Cox Center. Matthew Brown mentioned, “I feel like our team accomplished our goal, to win district and be the regular season champs. We worked very, very hard. Even if we were hurt, we still pushed through it.” Coach Brown expressed, “I love my team! They work extremely hard and are great kids. They deserve all of the success they’ve had this season. Can’t ask much more from these guys.” While the junior high basketball season has come to an end, the senior high boys and girls teams are left to finish the regular season strong and secure their spots in regionals. Coach Jeremy Brown exclaimed in conclusion, “It’s a great day to be a rabbit!”