Isaac Hungerford always has confidence in his shot – no matter the distance or situation.
“I feel pretty good after every shot I take,” said Hungerford, who is a sophomore on the DeWitt High School boys junior varsity basketball team. “You have to be confident.”
There was no panic in Hungerford’s demeanor in last week’s game against St. Johns, as he found the ball in his hands with a chance to lift his team to a last-second victory.
The Redwings were leading the Panthers, 44-42, with 3.9 seconds remaining when DeWitt proceeded to inbound the ball and try to steal a win as the final ticks were dwindling. Hungerford received the ball just as he stepped over halfcourt, and, without a dribble, the sophomore rose up and let loose a 3-pointer from beyond NBA range.
The shot handed the Panthers a 45-44 victory and was voted as the State Journal’s high school video of the week.
“I thought we had a shot (to win),” Hungerford said. “We’re never really out of it, and I felt like that was enough time that we could get up the floor and get a good shot up. …I didn’t have enough time to look at the clock.
“Originally, I was supposed to go across the lane and catch it on the run. But I was guarded, and that’s when it went to our point guard. He started dribbling up and found me.”
The buzzer-beating bucket was Hungerford’s first in high school. It helped propel the junior varsity team to 8-2 on the season.
Hungerford said he felt both “shock” and “excitement” as his team sprinted toward him in celebration.
“As soon as (the shot) went in my teammates were all on the floor,” he added. “There was pretty much a dogpile. It was fun.”
Contact James L. Edwards III at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @JLEdwardsIII.