By DOUG EADS
Call it a bounce-back game.
Call it a much-needed win. Call it what you want. Fact is, the Pulaski County Maroons — one night after letting a game slip away in the closing minute against undefeated Clay County — came back with a big-time statement on Friday night, turning back Madison Southern 84-73.
Colton Fraley led the Maroons with 28 points, while Jake Combs added 23 and Garrett Heath and Grant Oaks each chipped in with 11 points, helping the Maroons move to 5-3 on the season.
“Last night, I felt like we kind of gave one away there against Clay County when we had the lead late and failed to capitalize on it,” stated PC head coach John Fraley after Friday night’s win.
“That’s what we were looking to do tonight, and that was finish a game,” Fraley added. “With a young team it’s a growth process, but hopefully we’re still growing and striving to get better each and every day.”
Pulaski County hurt the visiting Eagles by cashing in at the free throw line helping seal a hard-fought victory.
The Maroons — in a tight game throughout — connected on 22-28 free throw attempts, to improved to 5-3 on the season, nailing down some clutch free throws coming down the stretch of the contest.
Meanwhile, the Southwestern Warriors simply dump-trucked Huntington Prep St. Joseph on Friday night, rolling over the Fighting Irish by a final score of 84-51.
Cole Dysinger led the Warriors with a 14 points while dishing out eight assists, on a night when Southwestern tallied a season-best 18 assists in the contest.
This was a blowout from the opening tap.
Chris Baker’s club rolled out to a 20-9 lead after one period, and extended that margin out to a whopping 35 points by the intermission, leading the Fighting Irish 52-17.
Early in the second half, the Warriors put this one on a running clock, and coach Baker emptied his bench, letting some of his younger players pick up some varsity experience.
Tanner McKee dished out three assists in the win and picked up three steals, while Jon Wood tallied eight rebounds for Southwestern, which evened its mark on the season at 5-5.
Brayden Sims and Hunter Coffey each added 11 points for the Warriors, while Andrew Smith scored 10 points.
Both Pulaski County and Southwestern will close out play in the M & W Shootout on Saturday evening.