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The North Johnston High varsity boys basketball team rebounded from its first loss of the season Friday night, using 17 points from senior Kameron Williams and 16 from classmate Trey Whitley in a 68-62 win over Princeton on Monday.
North Johnston of the 2-A Eastern Plains Conference climbed to 3-1 , while the 1-A Carolina Conference Eagles fell to 2-3.
Using only two 3-point field goals, the Panthers relied on their defense for easy baskets and knocked down 14 of 21 from the foul line.
“Very pleased with the ability to bounce back from a tough loss on Friday,” North Johnston head coach Chris Batten said. “By far, the best game we have played. Defensive pressure set the tone, and it was a different defensive presence than our other games.”
Senior Rakim Stancil was the third Panther in double figures with 12 points.
On Friday, a pair of defensive breakdowns in the fourth quarter provided two key open looks that doomed North Johnston to a 73-65 loss to Princeton.
Whitley posted 21 points to lead North Johnston, which was thoroughly outdistanced at the free-throw line. Princeton knocked down 20 of 26 at the line, while North Johnston was held to just a 2-for-7 showing.
“Got in some foul trouble early in the first (quarter),” Batten said. “I felt good about the intensity that we played with, but had a couple of missed defensive rotations in fourth that led to two wide open threes. We just have to have more defensive focus for the entire 32 minutes.”
Junior Savon Foye had 16 points and Stancil chipped in 14.
North Johnston visits Ayden-Grifton on Wednesday.
NORTH JOHNSTON (68)
Williams 17, Vann, Hinnant 3, Stancil 12, Broadway 7, Whitley 16, Foye 9, Dixon 4.
No scorers available.
Score by quarters:
North Johnston 15 18 16 19 — 68
Rosewood 13 13 13 23 — 62
NORTH JOHNSTON (65)
Williams 2, Vann, Stancil 14, Broadway 6, Whitley 21, Foye 16, Dixon 2.
Sapp, Sullivan 22, Whitley 10, Woodall, Wilkins 11, Klein 6, Gurganicus, Williams, Phillips, Pearce, Garris, Farrior, Woodard 24, Rutledge.
Score by quarters:
North Johnston 10 14 23 18 — 65
Princeton 13 14 25 21 — 73