Jackets send Johnson out a winner in front of dad - KTVQ.com | Q2 | Continuous News Coverage | Billings, MT

Jackets send Johnson out a winner in front of dad

Posted: Updated:

For the first time in Emmanuel Johnson’s collegiate career, Glenert Brown was in attendance to watch his son rally the Montana State University Billings men’s basketball team to a dramatic 86-85 Great Northwest Athletic Conference victory over Concordia University at Alterowitz Gym on Saturday evening.

In his final career game, on Senior Night, Johnson made four 3-pointers and scored 17 points as his father cheered him on from the front row behind the team’s bench. With the ‘Jackets trailing 85-82 with 49 seconds to play, Johnson stepped to the line and drained a pair of free throws to pull MSUB within one. After a gutsy defensive stop by Sven Jeuschede on the other end, Marc Matthews laid in the game-winning bucket with 12 seconds to play.

A final three attempt by Jarrett Gray missed, and the ‘Jackets swarmed around Johnson as time expired. “It was really special to have my dad here tonight,” Johnson said. “I just wanted us to get a win for him.”

Feature Story: For Emmanuel Johnson, ‘Never Give Up’ are words to live by

Sophomore Jordan Perry scored a season-high 20 points to lead MSUB, as he shot 7-for-10 from the field and made all five of his free-throw attempts. Matthews finished with 16 points, and Preston Beverly had his seventh double-double of the season with 11 points and 11 rebounds.

“Our main goal was to send EJ out the right way, and I was excited about the way the guys came out and finished the game,” said MSUB head coach Jamie Stevens. “EJ is going to be missed. He has been an incredible teammate and has been great for the program. Everyone who followed us could tell that EJ’s game has gone to that next level in the last two years.”

MSUB finished the season on a positive note, pushing its record to 11-17 overall and 8-12 in GNAC play. In its first season in the conference, Concordia finished the year 7-20 overall and 5-15 in league play.

The ‘Jackets started the game red hot from beyond the arc, as Johnson and Beverly each had a pair of threes and Matthews added one in the first four minutes of the game. MSUB led by as many as 10 points in the opening half, and carried a 43-36 edge into the locker room.

The Cavs started the second half with a 14-7 run against the ‘Jackets that shifted momentum and tied the score at 50-50. The Yellowjackets regained the lead, but the game remained within two possessions into the waning minutes of the second half. Latrell Wilson had a pair of big threes and Drew Martin threw down a loud dunk with both hands to tie the score at 78-78 with 3:57 to go.

CU’s largest advantage in the back-and-forth finish came right before Johnson made his two biggest free throws of the night, as the ‘Jackets persevered to get the win.

Wilson made 5 of 8 3-pointers and led all players with 24 points, and Martin added 20 for the ‘Cavs. Davis Nuaimi (13 points) and Riley Hawken (11 points) were also double-figure scorers for the visitors.

MSUB won the battle on the boards 36-27, but the ‘Jackets were held back by 18 turnovers which CU turned into 18 points.

Kendall Denham had a career-high 10 assists for the ‘Jackets, and also had seven points in 37 minutes. Emmanuel Olufemi contributed 21 solid minutes, scoring eight points with six rebounds and a block.

JOHNSON’S ‘JACKET CAREER: In two seasons with MSUB, Johnson scored 569 points and averaged 10.5 per game. He also grabbed 4.7 rebounds per game, and shot 46.2 percent from the field (196-for-424). He started 38 games and played in 54, and made 50 3-pointers while shooting 77.0 percent from the free-throw line (127-for-165). Johnson also had 76 assists, 28 blocks, and 28 steals while averaging 27.4 minutes per contest. His career high of 25 points came this season on Jan. 28 against Western Washington.

THE BUZZ: Perry was one point away from his career high of 21, which he reached last season against Simon Fraser…Olufemi finished the season with at least one block in all 19 games he played in, and he posted the second-highest single-season block total in MSUB history with 48…Denham’s previous high in assists (8) came last season against Ottawa University on Dec. 20 in Hawaii.

Powered by Frankly

© KTVQ.com 2018, KTVQ.com
All rights reserved
Privacy Policy, | Terms of Service, and Ad Choices

Can't find something?