Alex K.W. Schultz
Special to Colorado Community Media
Douglas County Huskies, say hello to Mac Terry and Gavin Hershberger.
The Rock Canyon junior-senior tandem, respectively, were next to unstoppable in a Jan. 17 boys basketball game on the Huskies’ home court, splashing 3-pointer after 3-pointer and all kinds of other shots in a dizzying display of shooting artistry.
Hershberger (24 points) and Terry (22 points) both scored season-highs on the night, powering their Jaguars to a 91-70 win over Douglas County in a 6A/5A Continental League tilt.
“We don’t have a guy who can really do it on his own,” 11th-year Rock Canyon coach Kent Grams said of why his squad is executing at such a high level so far this season. “That’s what I think our team is very good at — we’re unselfish and we play together as a team. It might be your night one night, but it’s going to be someone else’s night the next.”
Against Douglas County, it was Hershberger and Terry’s night.
At one point early in the second quarter, Hershberger netted a trio of 3-pointers over a span of 1 minute, 29 seconds to give Rock Canyon (14-1, 2-0) a 32-22 lead. That was the moment in the game when the Jaguars really started to catch fire and take control.
In the closing minutes of the previous quarter, Terry connected on three triples over a 3:04 span. His trey at the buzzer, which made the score 19-18 in Rock Canyon’s favor, gave his team the lead for good.
When the dust had settled on the hyperpaced, points-thick contest, Terry and Hershberger had combined for nine 3-pointers — five from Terry and four from Hershberger.
“My team found me when I was open,” said Hershberger, who will take his talents to Upper Iowa University, the state’s only Division II university, next season. “It’s not just me making shots, it’s them finding me when I’m open. It’s a team effort.”
Added Terry: “These guys set me up tonight. I couldn’t do it without them. We love to make plays for each other. ‘We over me.’ That’s what we always say.”
Grams’ “be unselfish and play together” message is clearly getting through to his players.
While Hershberger and Terry were the headliners, senior Aidan Peck also did plenty of damage against Douglas County (6-8, 0-1).
The 6-foot-7 guard’s dunk midway through the third quarter extended the Jaguars’ lead to 56-39.
Then, with the game already in hand for Rock Canyon late in the fourth quarter, Peck put an exclamation point on the win with another slam.
Peck finished with 17 points — 13 of his points came in the second half — for the Jaguars.
“We like to work together,” Grams said. “We’re doing a good job of sharing the ball and making the right reads to put people in the right spots to be able to make plays.”
The Huskies weren’t without their bright spots. They came into the night averaging 59 points a game, but thanks in large part to Anthony Nettles’ 26 points and Xander Baldessari’s 19, they bested their game average by 11 points. Gavin Dale scored six points for Douglas County, London Moore added five, and Roman Saiz and Andrew Horwith each had four.
For Rock Canyon, Reid Finch scored six points, Hudson Ellwood and Kasen Lehman each had five, and Nolan Kliewer had four.