Roanoke – Playing for the first time in a week, the Cougars took control early on against the Hidden Valley Titans and defeated them 48-31.
Pulaski County jumped out to a 13-4 first quarter advantage and never looked back.
Playing perhaps their best defense of the season, they went into intermission up 25-13. They stretched that to 36-20 going into final quarter.
Senior Lonnie Mattox led the way with 12 points, hitting four field goals and going 4 of 4 from the charity stripe.
Speaking of the charity stripe, the Cougars hit 12 of 13 for game in the best performance for them from the line this season.
Eight Cougars scored in the contest. Chipping in was Cam Merchant with 7 points, with Marcus Burks, Hesus Hickman and Isaac Poe all scoring 6 points apiece. Malik Eaves scored 5 points, Marcus Johnston scored 4 and Miguel Garcia scored 2 poitns.
Hidden Valley was led by J.J. DeVaughn with 11 points, and he was the only Titan to hit double figures. Graham Whitaker was next with five.
Pulaski County seemed to simply shut down the Titans by playing tough defense and a trapping full court press.
“I thought it was our best effort defensively,” said Cougar head coach Mark Hanks. “We rotated well and played hard. Offensively, we looked good at times. We are a work in progress. Our kids did a good job tonight.”
The win moved the Cougars to 8-6 overall and 5-3 in district play. They will remain on the road this coming week traveling to Blacksburg Tuesday and to very tough and talented Patrick Henry squad Wednesday. Both nights the junior varsity contest will be at 5:30 and varsity action at 7 p.m.
The junior varsity improved to 10-4 with a 55-45 victory over the Titans. Elliott Brewster had 13 points in the win. Bryant Grubb had 10 points, Brad Church and Hunter Thomas had 8 points each, and Kevin Smith chipped in with 7 points. The Titans got 11 points from Jared Harvey.
On a negative note, it’s often been said in the past the the Cougars can’t buy a break. They got a break tonight, and unfortunately it was a bad one as varsity player Tyler Blevins has been diagnosed with a broken bone at the base of his thumb. He is out for 4-6 weeks, and his basketball season is more than likely over. He actually had been playing with this injury for the last couple weeks. It happened against Cave Spring on January 8.