So how do you get ready to the biggest game of the season the first of the next week?
You go out on a Saturday afternoon and totally demolish and dismantle a homecoming opponent — that’s how.
And, that’s exactly what the Pulaski County Maroons did on Saturday afternoon against visiting Russell County.
John Fraley’s club barely broke a sweat in the first half in this one, leading the Lakers by a whopping, 50-20 margin at the intermission.
And as a result, it was PC cruising to an easy, 79-43 victory over the Lakers.
Pulaski County put 10 players into the scoring column, and had three players hit for double figures, while senior Garrett Heath — who had been out for the past three weeks with a shoulder injury — returned to the starting lineup on Saturday and tallied nine points.
Colton Fraley paced the Maroons with 14 points, KJ Combs added 13 points, and Logan Bates netted 10 points, as Pulaski County moved to 17-3 on the year with the win.
The win sets up a monumental, huge, big-time game — take your pick — game this Tuesday night inside both the 47th District and 12th Region.
The Somerset Briar Jumpers — also 17-3 on the year and coming off of last Friday’s 51-50 loss to St. Henry in the All A Classic — will travel to the PC Gym for the first of two regular season meetings between two very solid favorites to win the 12th Region this year.
Game time is set for 7:30 p.m., and you can follow all of the action on Somerset’s iHeartRadio, as yours truly and Adam Bray will bring you all of the exciting action between the Maroons and Briar Jumpers, beginning with our pregame show on LAKE 102.3 FM, which will get underway around 7:15 p.m.
The Pulaski County Maroons were a prohibitive favorite over district rival Casey County coming into their matchup on Tuesday night at The PC Gym.
On paper, this one was a mismatch with the 2-16 Rebels facing a 15-3 Pulaski County team that was undefeated against 12th Regional opponents.
On the court meanwhile, this one was a complete mismatch — and then some.
The Maroons put four players in double figures, had 11 players hit the scoring column, and for good measure, senior guard Colton Fraley hit a shot from midcourt just before the horn sounded ending the first half.
By that point, Pulaski County led the Rebels 43-21, and never looked back, as the Maroons went on to post an 82-51 victory.
Pulaski County was led by KJ Combs with 17 points in the win, while Grant Oakes added 16 points.
Logan Bates played a great game for PC, as the senior came off the Maroons bench to add 14 points, while Zach Travis added 10 points, along with a fantastic ally-oop dunk off an assist from Fraley.
Pulaski County — 16-3 on the season – will return to action on Saturday night at home to take on Russell County.
They are two teams that are legitimate regional contenders in their respective regions, and on Monday night at The PC Gym, they certainly played like it.
Clay County — a powerhouse out of the 13th Region — squared off against a Pulaski County team that has been rolling along this season, and faced a Maroon squad that remains undefeated this season against 12th Regional opponents.
With both teams stepping out of the their respective regions, they put on a show on Monday night in a great basketball game.
When all was said and done however, it was John Fraley and the Pulaski County Maroons that just keep right on rolling along, as the Maroons held off the visiting Tigers down the stretch to post a hard-fought, 78-73 win over Clay County, improving to 15-3 on the season.
“I thought we played very well offensively tonight in stretches, and then there were other times I didn’t think we really got into anything,” stated a very happy coach Fraley after his club’s victory.
“When we ran our stuff, we got what we wanted,” added the PC head coach.
This game was close throughout, with eight lead changes and three ties in the first half.
However, thanks to 11 points by senior point guard Colton Fraley in the opening half of play, along with 14 first half points off the PC bench, the Maroons went into the intermission on top in this one, albeit by a single digit at 37-36.
Grant Oakes — who scored all six of his points in the second half — gave the Maroons their biggest lead of the night late in the third period with a hoop, that extended the PC lead at that juncture to 50-43.
Clay County however would fight back.
Behind the game-high 24 points from Connor Robinson, the Tigers came all the way back to cut the lead back down to a single point once again.
With PC leading by three points late in the third quarter, sophomore Zach Travis made the first of three big plays on the night to get the Maroons over the proverbial hump.
Travis drained a three-pointer just before the horn sounded ending the third frame, and PC went into the fourth quarter with a 59-53 lead over Clay County.
In the final stanza with his team leading by that one point, Travis scored a huge bucket at crunch time, easing the PC advantage out to 74-71 with just over a minute left to play.
With the score 74-73 after a Clay County bucket — facing a full-court press — Travis broke free behind the defense, received a half court pass, and raced down for an emphatic dunk, putting PC on top of the Tigers at 76-73 with only :47 remaining in the game.
After a key defensive stop by the Maroons on the next possession downcourt by Clay County, Colton Fraley made both ends of a one and one to ice the game for Pulaski County.
Afterwards, head coach John Fraley was a very proud coach of his team, and the way that it has played throughout the course of the season, overcoming injuries to key players such as Oakes and Garrett Heath.
“If you would have told me that we would have been 15-3 through 18 games before the start of the season, I would have probably taken it, especially with the kind of schedule that we’ve played,” stated coach Fraley.
“We’re battling, and we’re trying to get better everyday,” added the PC coach. “As long as we can roll into February with everybody healthy, I feel like we’ve got a chance.”
Colton Fraley and Travis led a very balanced Pulaski County scoring attack in the win with 15 points each, while KJ Combs and Caleb Sloan each contributed 14 points for the Maroons.
The Maroons return to action tonight at home, hosting Casey County in a girl/boy doubleheader at The PC Gym.
The action will tip off at 6 p.m. beginning with the girl’s contest.
The Pulaski County Maroons scored the first 11 points of the game on Friday night against arch-rival Southwestern, and then trailed for the first time of the contest early in the third period.
No problem for John Fraley and crew however.
On Friday evening at The PC Gym, the Maroons made the plays they needed to make at crunch time, and in a game that was what one might expect between two solid district and regional contenders, it was Pulaski County surviving in round one of this county rivalry, with a hard-fought, 69-64 win over the Warriors.
After falling behind PC early on in this affair by that 11-0 margin, Southwestern managed to slowly climb back in this one.
Senior point guard Cole Dysinger hit three of his four made three-point baskets in the first half, helping the Warriors get off of the mat.
Despite being down by double figures right out of the gate, the Warriors were only down to the Maroons by a bucket at halftime, only trailing Pulaski County by a 31-29 margin.
In the third frame, Southwestern took its only two leads of the contest, grabbing a one-point lead early in the third quarter, and later in the frame, Chris Baker’s club found itself up by two points over the Maroons.
However, Pulaski County would come back on a night where the Maroons wouldn’t be denied.
The game was tied up at 47-47 through three quarters of play, but thanks to a 22-12 rally by the Maroons in the final frame, PC finally took charge in this one for good.
Pulaski County led this one late — 69-59 — before Southwestern would score five late points inside the final 10 seconds of the game.
KJ Combs hurt the Warriors all night long with his ability to post up in the paint for some easy baskets, and he led PC with a game-high 20 points.
Colton Fraley added 17 points in the win for the Maroons, and Zach Travis chipped in with 11 points.
Southwestern meanwhile was paced by Dysinger’s 18 points, while Brayden Sims added 17 points for the Warriors.
The Maroons came into Friday night’s game as the only team in the 12th Region with an undefeated record against 12th Regional opponents, and thanks to the win over the Warriors, that streak remained in tact.
Pulaski County — 14-3 on the season with the win — will return to action at The PC Gym on Monday night, hosting 13th Regional power Clay County at 7:30 p.m.
The Warriors — 11-8 on the year with the loss — with seven of those eight losses coming by five points or less — will swing back into action tonight at the friendly confines of The Wigwam, as Southwestern will host Tates Creek at 7:30 p.m.
Coming off of their first district loss in seven years, the Southwestern Lady Warriors came into Friday night’s game against Pulaski County as a favorite in round one of this yearly clash, but Junior Molden’s club found itself in another tight affair at The PC Gym.
Homestanding Pulaski County gave Southwestern all it wanted and then some, however, the Lady Warriors — unlike earlier in the week at Wayne County — would have the answers at crunch time.
Alexa Smiddy led all scorers with 15 points, Kennedy Harris added 12 points, and senior guard Jenna Wood scored all seven of her points in the fourth quarter — which included two, huge made three’s — as Molden’s club prevailed over the Lady Maroons in a thriller, by a final count of 52-48.
This one was close throughout, and it was Pulaski County that led the Lady Warriors at the intermission by a 22-19 margin in a very low-scoring affair.
Southwestern got down by as many as five points early in the second half, but Molden’s club was able to rally, and actually led PC 34-31 headed into the fourth quarter.
In that final frame, the game remained tight.
Senior Jenna Wood arguably saved the day for the Lady Warriors, as she scored all seven of her points in the fourth period, which included both of those big-time, three-point baskets.
Pulaski County — which fell to 12-6 on the season with the loss — was led by Maddy Dunn with 14 points, while Caroline Oakes added 12 points for the Lady Maroons, and Heidi Thompson scored 11 points.
Southwestern — 14-3 on the season — will return to action on Monday evening at 6:30 p.m. on the road at Clay County, while Pulaski County will also be on the road on Monday at 4 p.m., playing at Russell High School over in eastern Kentucky.
Heading into their home game against defending 12th Regional champion Lincoln County on Tuesday night, the Pulaski County Maroons stood as the only team in the 12th Region that was still undefeated against regional opponents.
And that trend continued on Tuesday evening at The PC Gym against the Patriots.
Grant Oakes paced a very balanced Pulaski County scoring attack, and John Fraley’s club ran its overall record to 13-3 on the season, while moving to 6-0 on the season against 12th Regional foes with a 56-50 victory.
Zach Travis added 13 points in the win, while KJ Combs scored 12 points and Colton Fraley added 11.
The Maroons — 13-3 on the season — will return to action on Friday night at The Wigwam, as coach Fraley and crew will face the Southwestern Warriors for the first time this year.
That game will tip off after the girl’s game between the two schools, which is slated to get underway at 6 p.m.
The Pulaski County Lady Maroons traveled to Lincoln County on Monday night, and thanks to a scoring drought in the fourth quarter, Chris Adkins and crew fell to the Lady Patriots by a final score of 54-44.
Maddy Dunn led the Lady Maroons in the loss with 11 points, while Molli Nelson added nine points for a Pulaski County team that fell to 12-5 on the season with the loss.
This game hung in the balance through three quarters of play, with Lincoln County clinging to a 40-39 lead headed into the final eight minutes of play.
In that decisive fourth quarter, the Lady Pats outscored PC 14-5, as the Lady Maroons had trouble scoring coming down the stretch, and that cost PC big-time in what had been a nip and tuck affair.
Pulaski County will look to bounce back on Friday night, but it will not be an easy task, as the Lady Maroons will travel across town to face arch-rival Southwestern beginning at 6 p.m. at The Wigwam.
That game will be the first contest of a girl-boy doubleheader between the two schools.