Jim Hull was premature in thinking he had reached a monumental scoring milestone earlier this season.
The Augusta Prep senior scored a basket against Edmund Burke and thought that was it, his 2000th career point. But there was no standing ovation, no acknowledgement of Hull's feat from Prep's home crowd. The basket had given Hull 1,999. And after his next lay-up, the announcement was made over the public address system.
"It was cool to get it at our gym and everything," Hull said.
Hull scores points in bunches, so you'll have to forgive him for losing track of one now and then. He needed 16 points against Edmund Burke on Dec. 4 to reach 2,000. He scored 46.
He's averaging 35.2 points per game and will be the Cavaliers' leading scorer for a third consecutive season. But Hull's approach has been different than previous seasons.
The 6-foot-3 guard's scoring ability is no secret to opposing teams, and he's faced a variety of special tactics meant to stop him. Curtis Baptist threw a triangle-and-two at the Cavaliers when they visited, with two defenders hounding Hull the entire game and the other three playing a zone.
"Sometimes when I throw the ball, I can't get it back," Hull said. "That's their whole focus is to not let me get the ball back."
Hull was held to 17 points, but teammate John Paul Lynn scored 19 and the Cavaliers won handily.
Lynn and Prep guard Joseph Hall have relieved Hull of some of his ball-handling responsibilities, freeing him to work off screens and create his own shot.
As a result, the Cavaliers are a more balanced team than years past.
They beat perennial region rival Westminster by 10 points before the holidays. Prep plays host to its crosstown foes Tuesday, its first game back from Christmas break.
The Cavaliers were 9-2 entering the holidays, with their two losses coming to Mount Vernon, the No. 1 team in Georgia Independent Schools Class AAA.
Hull said he believes Prep has the pieces to threaten for a region title.
"As long as we just play good defense, the offense is going to come for us," Hull said. "When we come and play defense, we're going to be a pretty good team. We're going to be hard to beat."
Hull played travel ball during the summer with Georgia Elite and came back in better shape than the year before, Prep coach Mike Guthrie said.
Hull also has worked on his 3-point shooting, something he's shied away from in the past.
At the break, Hull had made 13 of 29 attempts from beyond the arc. He attempted 44 all of last season.
"He looks for it regularly now," Guthrie said of Hull's long-range shot. "It's definitely become part of his arsenal, which it wasn't before."
Hull's versatility is no longer about impressing college coaches. He's made his decision.
In 2009, he'll attend the University of Richmond -- to run track.
That's right; one of the area's top scorers is also one of the area's top distance runners. He didn't get the interest he would have liked for basketball. When the Spiders offered him the chance to run cross country and track, he took it.
"I like both of them evenly, but basketball didn't work out like I thought it was going to," Hull said. "So I'll take this opportunity in track."
Hull said he wasn't sure whether he would make a play for a spot on the Spiders' basketball team.
Right now, he'd like Augusta Prep to win a region title, and later for him to defend three state titles at the GISA AAA meet.
As for scoring milestones, Hull still has a ways to reach 3,000.
"I'm going to have to put up some real big numbers if I'm going to reach that," he said.
Nothing out of the ordinary for Hull.
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