100-2

To say that the game was always going to be a mismatch is an understatement. Kimper is a small school of only 180 total students, and features players as young as 11 on its squad. That’s a stark contrast to Pikeville, which might indeed boast one of the nation’s most talented squads of eighth-graders; the same team which routed Kimper rolled past Virgie (Ky.) Middle School 75-32 in the championship game of the tournament. The Pikeville squad consists of the best members of the school’s sixth- and seventh-grade teams from the past two seasons, when Johnson served as the head coach of those squads. He also coached the most select players from those teams on the AAU circuit, giving the team a cohesiveness that stands in stark contrast to the Kimper squad.

As one might expect, the full statistics from such a one-sided romp are even more shocking than Pikeville’s 70-point half. Perhaps the most astonishing is the following: Pikeville led 25-0 just 1:48 into the game, when the team dropped its full court press and Johnson removed all five of his team’s starters. Do the math, and one quickly realizes that Pikeville essentially scored a bucket every eight seconds when its starters were in the game.