The LaRue County Hawks hosted the Hart County Raiders Friday night in the second game of their regular season matchups. The Hawks had a narrow escape in Munfordville in December with a 53-51 win. The Raiders, an up-and-down team which recently defeated Green County, were looking for some payback.
After a strong week of practice where Coach Paul Childress pointed out what the team needed to improve, LaRue County found its defensive edge again, constantly harassing Hart County and disrupting what the Raiders wanted to do.
The Hawks dominated the first half, building a 41-21 halftime lead en route to their second straight win, a 70-54 decision to keep their hopes of attaining the top seed for the 18th District Tournament alive.
LaRue (15-2 overall, 4-1 in district) showed that against the Raiders.
LaRue wasted little time taking control of the game. As the team trailed 8-7, freshman Jordan Brewer made a layup, senior Christian Seymour drained the first of his three 3-pointers and senior Tyler Hornback connected on a baseline jumper to push the lead to 14-8 with 1:08 remaining in the first quarter.
Things didn’t get any better for the Raiders (4-12, 1-5) in the second quarter as the Hawks continued to turn up the defensive pressure. Jordan Brewer nailed a long jumper and senior Bryan Bault made two free throws to give the Hawks a 22-12 lead.
After a pair of free throws by Hart County’s Ryan Atwell, Seymour drilled 3-pointers on back-to-back possessions to stretch the lead to 28-16 with 3:50 left before halftime.
The Raiders pulled within 10 on a layup by Cedric Vaughn, but the Hawks exploded for a 13-0 run. Hornback started the spurt with a layup and Anthony Brewer, who had three straight steals, finished it off with seven consecutive points as the lead swelled to 41-18 with 47 seconds remaining.
LaRue County led by 14 or more points the entire second half.
With the win, the Hawks kept pace with the Green County Dragons in the race for the top seed. Both teams are 4-1 and the teams will meet Feb. 6 to decide the top spot.
“This was a big game,” LaRue County freshman Kyle Sheeran said. “We played real well. We came out tonight and played good defense. That was the key. We have to continue to do that.”
Seymour led the way with 14 points. Hornback and Sheeran each chipped in with 12 points. Anthony Brewer had 11 points and six steals, while Bault had 10 points and nine rebounds.
Childress said the Hawks played so many games during the Christmas break that they haven't had alot of time to work on some of our problems
“We haven’t had a lot of practice time,” Childress said. “But we’ve been able to practice here lately and we’ve been able to drill them on some of the fundamentals of defense. The last couple of days, we’ve spent a lot of time on our defense and they’ve responded. I thought our defense allowed us to get out in transition more and we capitalized on it.”
Information provided by Coach Paul Childress