Monday, December 09, 2013 6:22 AM
Published on: Thursday, March 21, 2013
By Brandy L. Simms
COLLEGE PARK – Although Magruder lost Saturday’s 4A state championship game to Eleanor Roosevelt, the Colonels found a future star in sophomore center Joe Hugley.
The 6-foot-6 dynamo finished with nine points and a team-high 10 rebounds in Magruder’s five-point loss to Eleanor Roosevelt.
“I had to do what I can to help my team win,” said Hugley.
The lanky 15-year-old showed deft shooting range from beyond the three-point arc, connecting on 3-of-5 attempts. In fact, all three of his field goals were 3-pointers.
“At the beginning of the game I felt a little pressure,” said Hugley, “but when the game went on I just got into the groove of the game and did anything I can to help my team win.”
The sophomore’s buzzer beater at the end of the third quarter cut the Eleanor Roosevelt deficit to 43-37. He later connected on a 3-pointer with 4:21 remaining in the fourth period to cut the Raiders’ lead to five points, 50-45. Hugley was also a force on the boards, snagging six defensive rebounds.
Magruder head coach Dan Harwood described Hugley’s performance as a “coming of age for my sophomore.”
“I was real proud of him,” said Harwood. “Hopefully this will jump start him for the offseason. Joe’s got a chance to be the next really great Magruder player.”
Hugley has spent the past two seasons competing on the Colonels’ junior varsity team where he averaged 18 points and nine rebounds per game this season.
Hugley’s breakout performance against Eleanor Roosevelt was a confidence builder, he said.
“It gives me confidence but it doesn’t stop me from working,” said Hugley. “I’m going to work as hard as I can to make sure we can have a chance to get back here next year.”