With the holiday season rolling around again, it’s time for holiday basketball tournaments, and the Cougars found the season to be a good one with three wins in the Farmer’s Bank Christmas Tournament, held at Breckinridge County High School over the weekend.
On Saturday, the Cougars rallied from a seven-point, halftime deficit to beat the Panther’s of Portland, Tn. by a score of 46-34. On Sunday they played a rematch with the Frederick Fraize Aces, of Cloverport, and won going away 53-36.
Finally on Monday, the Cougars dispatched the St. Patrick Saints, a team out of Maysville, by a score of 54-40 to run their record to 5-3 on the early season.
The Cougars came out cold to start this game, hitting just 3-of-13 first-quarter shots for a frigid 23 percent. Despite that, the Cougars managed to hold a one-point, 8-7 lead heading into the second quarter.
Grayson County shot the ball a little better in the second period, 4-of-10, but the Panthers used a 7-0 run to take their largest lead of the game, eight points at 20-12 with 2:33 left in the first half.
Grayson County called a timeout at that point, and when they returned to the floor, sophomore Bailey Logsdon hit a three-pointer to cut the lead back to five, 20-15. Logsdon was playing again after missing the past two games recovering from injuries he suffered in an automobile accident.
The Cougars cut the lead further, to four points at 21-17 with 55 seconds left, but the Panthers’ Austin Hicks hit a three with 18 seconds left that gave Portland a seven-point advantage, 24-17 at the half.
The game began to change in the third period as the Cougars came out pressing the length of the floor. Grayson County forced 10 Portland turnovers in the third quarter and held the Panthers to just two points as they tied the score 26-26 heading into the fourth quarter.
The two teams traded the lead at the start of the fourth period with the Cougars taking a 30-29 lead at the 5:54 mark on two Logsdon free throws. The Cougars would never trail again.
After the Cougars had increased their lead to four points, 33-29 with 3:37 left to play, the Panthers cut it to a two-point game, 33-31 on a short floater from Bryce Keith with 3:19 left.
Grayson County responded with a 7-1 run, capped off by a Trey Goff three at the 2:12 mark, and suddenly the Cougars led by eight points, 40-32. The Panthers were never closer than six points the rest of the way.
Caelum Utley led the Panthers in scoring with 17 points. Logsdon led the Cougars with a game-high 18 points. He also led the team with five rebounds and was named Player of the Game.
Cole Akridge joined Logsdon in double figures with 12 points. Goff scored nine points and added four rebounds. Tanner Tyra scored four points and Gage Akridge had three to complete the scoring.
Grayson County had opened their season with a 15-point win, 60-45, on the Aces’ home floor, so they were familiar with what the Aces would bring.
The Aces came out charged up and rode that emotional high to an 8-5 lead with 2:35 left in the first period, but the Cougars brought them back to earth by scoring the final eight points of the period to lead by five, 13-8 heading into the second quarter.
When Logsdon scored on a lay-up to open the second-period scoring, the Cougars had scored 10 straight and led by seven, 15-8 at the 7:08 mark.
Gage Akridge scored on a lay-in with 5:22 left to give the Cougars their largest lead of the first half, nine points at 19-10, but the Aces would not fold. They closed out the first half on an 8-2 run to cut the lead to just three points, 24-21 heading into the second half.
Max Toubree’s three pointer at the 3:47 mark of the third quarter completed a 9-4 Cloverport run that saw them take a two-point lead, 30-28, but that would be it for the Aces.
Grayson County responded by scoring the last nine points of the third period, then opened the fourth with 11 unanswered points. Goff’s lay-in at the 4:55 mark completed a 20-0 Cougar surge that saw them increase their lead to 18 points, 48-30 and put the game out of reach of the Aces.
Toubree led the Aces with 14 points. Cole Akridge led Grayson County with 14 points and he added four rebounds, three assists and a team-high six steals.
Goff hit a pair of threes and finished with 12 points and three steals and was named Player of the Game. Tyra was the third Cougar player to score in double figures, finishing with 11 points. Conner Schultz finished with eight points off the bench, Gage Akridge had six and Logsdon added two to complete the scoring.
The Cougars used an 11-0, second-quarter run to break open a close game. They were sparked by an outstanding performance from senior Gage Akridge who scored a career-high 23 points and added three rebounds and three steals. Akridge was awarded Player of the Game honors at the end of the contest.
The lead changed hands twice at the start of the game before an Akridge lay-up at the 6:04 mark put the Cougars up by one, 5-4. Goff followed with a three at the 6:54 mark to make it 8-4.
The Saints pulled back to within a point of the lead, 9-8 with 2:02 left in the first period, but Schultz buried a three with 1:40 left to push it back to a four-point lead, 12-8. Grayson County led by two, 12-10 heading into the second quarter.
The Saints made it seven unanswered points when they opened the second period with a rebound basket by Ben Swolsky and a three-pointer by Jakaar Fry to lead by three points, 15-12 at the 6:42 mark.
Akridge scored at the 5:30 mark to make it 15-14, but Fry answered with a lay-in to make it a three-point affair again, 17-14. That would be the last gasp, though, for the Saints. Grayson County reeled off 11 straight points, capped off by a nifty running hook in the lane by Akridge with 1:48 left, and the Cougars led by eight points, 25-17.
Goff later hit a three to beat the halftime buzzer and the Cougars took a nine-point lead, 30-21, into the locker room, at the half.
The Cougars put the game pretty much out of reach when they opened the third period by scoring the first seven points to go up by 16 points, 37-21 at the 6:15 mark. Akridge’s lay-in at the 7:27 mark and two free throws at 6:15 were sandwiched around a Goff three-pointer at 6:53 to give the Cougars their big lead. The Cougars led by 12 points, 43-31 heading into the final period of play.
Another Akridge basket at the 5:43 mark of the fourth quarter increased the Cougar lead back up to 16 points, 47-31, and the Saints were never closer than 12 points the rest of the way.
The Saints were led by Fry, with 15 points, and Swolsky, who finished with 10.
Goff joined Akridge in double figures with 12 points, all of which came on three-pointers. Cole Akridge scored eight points and added two rebounds and four assists. Tyra finished with six points and led the Cougars on the glass with eight rebounds.
Logsdon scored two points to complete the scoring and he added five rebounds and a team-high seven assists.