A lackluster beginning led to a bad ending Tuesday night as the Harrison County Thorobreds lost by a 60-57 score at Estill County.
The Breds lost the game despite hitting on five of eight three-point attempts in the final period when they cut the lead to one point before falling by the final three-point margin.
Harrison County had a final attempt with less than four seconds to play but junior Dillon Pulliam’s three-point attempt was short and time ran out on the Thorobreds.
Pulliam had connected on four three pointers in the last period but the final shot was off the mark.
Harrison County began the game a step slow on defense with the Engineers jumping out to a 12-8 first quarter lead.
The visiting Thorobreds committed six of the 17 turnovers they had in the game in the first period as careless ball handling was an early issue.
The home Engineers stretched the lead to 26-19 at the half as they were making 12 of 24 field goal attempts while Harrison County was only good on eight of 21 tries. Many of the first half baskets for Estill County were uncontested shots from close in that was caused by a poor defensive effort.
Harrison County came to life in the third period for a while but could never regain the lead.
The game’s leading scorer, senior center Brandon Morris, was seemingly everywhere for Estill County grabbing a big rebound or scoring an important basket just when it seemed that Harrison County was getting ready to take the lead.
Morris, who averages just less than 12 points per contest, put in 23 for the night to hold off each Harrison County rally.
Couple Morris’ play with some good passing by the Engineers and it was difficult for Harrison County to get momentum long enough to take the lead.
In fact, the Breds led only 1-0 on a single free throw by Scott Kendall to start the game and Estill County held the lead throughout the rest of the ball game.
For the night, the Breds made 21 of 60 from the field, seven of 15 from behind the arc and eight of 13 free throws. Estill County was 20 of 48 from the field, three of 12 from behind the arc and 17 of 26 from the charity stripe.
Harrison County out rebounded Estill County by 28 to 22 for the game but committed 17 turnovers to 12 for the home squad.
The loss drops the Thorobreds to 15-8 for the year with a game Wednesday night on the Hilltop against Nicholas County.
Estill County improved its mark to 12-13 with the victory.