By DOUG EADS
The Pulaski County Maroons had to turn up the defensive pressure in the second half in Friday night’s first round of the annual Lake Cumberland Holiday Hoops Classic, and fortunately for John Fraley’s club, the Maroons were able to do just that — ‘D’ it up.
Facing Sullivan East High School on the opening night of the annual Lake Cumberland Holiday Hoops Classic, the Patriots did their best to shoot the Maroons out of their own building in the opening half of play.
Led by Dylan Bartley’s game-high 37 points, the visitors from Bluff City, Tennessee hit 10 three-point baskets in the first half, leading the Maroons 38-36 at the intermission.
However thanks to a 24-11 Pulaski County run to open the second half, it was coach Fraley and the Maroons roaring back for an 83-70 win, improving to 8-2 on the season.
Sullivan East — with not much size inside — played a fast-paced, break-neck style of basketball, with prolific shooters from downtown across the board.
Thanks to that up and down, let it rip style, the Patriots hit those 10 treys in the first half, taking a 38-36 lead into the locker room over the Maroons by halftime in a very entertaining opening half of play.
However, PC put the defensive clamps down in the third period, outscoring the Pats 24-11 in the frame, to fight back and take complete control of the contest.
KJ Combs led the Maroons with 29 points in the win, while Zach Travis added 16 points, and Colton Fraley chipped in with 11.
The Maroons — 8-2 on the season — return to play tonight in the Lake Cumberland Holiday Hoops Classic, taking on Newport High School this evening at 7:45 p.m.