So far this summer, the Cougar basketball team has made a habit out of playing well, but coming up short at the end of games.
It happened again last Tuesday as the Cougars traveled to Meade County for a pair of games. In the opener against the host Meade County Green Wave the Cougars stayed close until an 11-0 Green Wave run late in the second half put the game away, with the Waves winning 48-42.
The Cougars faced the John Hardin Bulldogs in a back-and-forth second game, staying close until the closing moments when the Bulldogs closed out the game on a 10-0 run to win going away 49-36.
There were five lead changes in the early going of the first half before Meade put together an 8-0 run that gave them a seven-point lead, 15-8 with 6:46 left.
A three-pointer by Conner Schultz with 3:28 remaining in the half pulled the Cougars to within three points of the lead, 16-13, but the Waves led by five, 22-17 at the half.
Meade County scored the first four points of the second half to grab their largest lead so far, nine points at 26-17.
Another Schultz three with 10:24 remaining to be played pulled Grayson County back to within four points, 31-27, but the Waves scored the next 11 straight to lead by 15 points, 42-27 with 3:44 left.
Grayson County responded with an 11-2 run that included a pair of threes from Caleb Ray and another three from Spencer Sharp. That brought the Cougars to within six points, 44-38 with 49 seconds left, but they would get no closer.
Schultz led the Cougars with 15 points and added a team-high six assists. Ray and Jack Davis both finished with six points, while Bailey Logsdon had five and Trey Goff had four. Sharp and Josh Embry both scored three points to complete the Cougar scoring.
The Cougars and the Bulldogs went back-and-forth in the first half. Two ties and four lead changes saw the Cougars trailing 13-12 with 8:25 left in the first half.
Ray hit a jumper from just inside the arc to put the Cougars back on top 14-13, and Goff followed with a three with 5:26 left to make it 17-13. When Sharp followed that up with a running jumper at 4:52, the Cougars held their largest lead of the game, six points at 19-13.
But the Bulldogs closed out the half on a 9-2 run and led by a point, 22-21 at the half.
The two teams went back to exchanging the lead at the start of the second half. Six times the lead changed hands until the Bulldogs put together a 7-0 stretch that saw them leading by six points, 39-33 with 5:14 left to play.
Sharp answered with a three-pointer with 4:32 left to play that brought the Cougars to within three points of the lead, 39-36, but those would be the last points of the night for the Cougars.
John Hardin scored the last 10 points of the night to win by 13 points, certainly not indicative of how close this game actually was.
Goff buried four three-pointers and led all scorers with 18 points. Sharp and Schultz both scored five points, and Schultz led the team with five rebounds and three assists.
Embry scored four points and also grabbed five rebounds. Davis and Ray both scored two points to complete the scoring.
Reach Don Brown at 259-9622, ext. 2016.