Patriots fall to No. 23 Pulaski Co.

SOMERSET — The Pulaski County Maroons remain perfect in the region.

Lincoln County fell short in its attempt to upset the top team in the 12th Region, as No. 23 Pulaski County turned back the visiting Patriots 56-50 Tuesday night.

Riley Bodner, who led Lincoln with 15 second-half points, hit inside off a Jaxon Smith assist with 1:48 to play to tie the game at 48. Pulaski, which led most of the game, eased back out to a 52-48 lead after a Grant Oaks basket and two Colton Fraley free throws only to have Tramane Alcorn drive inside to cut the deficit to 52-50.

But Lincoln would get no closer. Zach Travis, who had three dunks in the win, scored nine of his total 13 points in the fourth quarter, closing with two buckets in the final 16.4 seconds as Pulaski extended its regional win streak to six.

Travis was one of four Maroons hitting double digits in the win. Oaks led Pulaski (13-3) with a game-high 17 points, KJ Combs added 12 points and Fraley finished with 11 points.

Lincoln posted the early win, with Smith opening the game with two free throws then Bryston Alcorn hitting from 3-point range for a 5-1 edge. Combs scored Pulaski’s first bucket at the 5;55 mark, converting on a Lincoln turnover. Frazier then tied the game at 5-all with a slam dunk. Alcorn hit inside to put the Pats back up 7-5 but the Maroons closed the quarter on an 8-2 run. Oaks had two buckets and two free throws and Combs had a basket for a 13-9 lead after one.

Pulaski maintained its lead over the second and third quarters, leading by as many as eight points in the second quarter and posting the game’s largest lead, 34-24, in the third.

The Maroons’ second-quarter lead had been cut to two points by the end of the first half. Elijah Frye drove inside for a layup late in the period and Baylor Mattingly followed with two 3-point goals to make it 25-23.

The Patriots also whittled away at the Maroons’ 10-point lead in the third quarter, outscoring their hosts 12-5 in the second half of the period. Bodner led the third-quarter surge with the first seven points of the run, converting on a three-point play then hitting two more buckets in the paint. Frye scored off a Bodner assist late in the third then Mattingly hit his third 3 of the night just before the buzzer to get Lincoln within 39-36 going into the fourth quarter.

The margin had been extended back to five points early in the final frame, 45-40, off a baseline bucket by Frazier and a basket and two free throws from Oaks. The Patriots stayed within two to three points of the Maroons before Bodner hit inside for the tie late in the game but could never overtake Pulaski.

Lincoln had a better shot percentage in the loss, connecting on 46 percent of its shots. The Patriots were 19-for-41 from the field, with four 3-point goals. Pulaski finished at 42 percent on 19-for-45 shooting, with five 3’s. The Maroons outshot the Pats at the foul line, converting on 13 of 16 attempts while Lincoln went 8 of 10.

  

At Pulaski Co.

Lincoln 9 14 13 14 – 50

Pulaski 13 12 14 17 – 56

LINCOLN (10-5) – Bryston Alcorn 7, Tramane Alcorn 7, Elijah Frye 6, Jaxon Smith 6, Baylor Mattingly 9, Riley Bodner 15.

PULASKI (13-3) –  Colton Fraley 11, Zach Travis 13, KJ Combs 12, Caleb Sloan 3, Grant Oaks 17.