Bears sizzle with 15 3-pointers in win over Pikeville

Carmical ties school record with eight 3s

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Chris Jones

Harlan County freshman guard Trent Noah tracked down an errant pass Saturday night as Harlan County turned back Pikeville. Noah tallied 29 points in the Black Bears’ 83-63 win.

By John Henson, Managing Editor

 

Even with their most experienced player on the bench in street clothes, the Harlan County Black Bears are one of eastern Kentucky’s best teams when the 3-point shots are falling. They fell at something of a record pace Saturday and there wasn’t much that visiting Pikeville could do about it.
Harlan County hit 15 of 32 from beyond the 3-point line and never trailed on the way to an 83-63 victory over one of the 15th Region’s top teams.
“They played extremely well, and I thought we came out a little bit flat. They got in a rhythm early and hit some shots,” Pikeville coach Elisha Justice said. “You do that on the road out of the region it’s hard to come back from. Not only that, we let them get comfortable early. I tell my guys if you let a shooter hit a few early that rim starts to get bigger. We have to do a better job of not letting guys get so comfortable early.”
Freshman guard Trent Noah again led the Bears with 29 points, including four 3-pointers. Sophomore guard Daniel Carmical tied the school record held by Cameron Carmical and Trey Sanders with eight 3-pointers in a 24-point effort. Jackson Huff chipped in with a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds as HCHS improved to 10-1, even without senior guard Tyler Cole, who suffered a strained groin in a win at South Laurel earlier in the week.
“To be able to beat a team like Pikeville, one of the best teams in that region, without Tyler says a lot about this team,” Harlan County coach Michael Jones said. “We have to get him healthy though before Tuesday. He’s an important part of this team.”
Despite the strong offensive effort, Jones was even more pleased with the Bears’ defense.
“I was really impressed with how active we were defensively, especially the first half,” he said. “We were doing a great job defending the dribble. Our hands were active and we got numerous deflections. I think that’s the best we’ve played defensively we played Bell here.”
Senior center Josh Turner also had a big game for the Bears with nine points and seven rebounds.
“Josh was unbelievable tonight on both ends of the floor,” Jones said. “He does a great job of getting in the right position and using his body defensively. He did a great job on the boards and scored when he had the opportunity and made some great passes out of our press offense.”
Junior guards Rylee Samons and Zack Lockhart each scored 16 to lead Pikeville. Laithan Hall added 10 points.
Noah had five baskets in the opening quarter as the Bears capitalized on six turnovers to take control early. Carmical hit his first 3, then Noah reeled off 11 straight points for an 18-7 lead. Two more baskets by Noah and one by Josh Turner pushed the lead to 26-12 after one period.
Carmical hit three 3-pointers in the second quarter while Noah and Huff added one each as the Bears built a 43-16 lead midway through the period. A couple of 3-pointers by Samons helped the Panthers cut the deficit to 48-28 at the break.
Pikeville made a run to start the second half, causing a couple of HC turnovers that helped the Panthers get as close as 13 with Samons, Lockhart and Hall scoring. Jonah Swanner reeled off six straight points on a three-point play and 3-pointer to help the Bears reclaim control.
“Jonah was active defensively and did a good job of getting to the hole on offense,” Jones said. “We need that from him. I’m proud of the way he played tonight.”
Carmical found the range again with three 3-pointers in the final 2:10 of the period as the lead grew to 70-42. Noah hit six straight free throws as the Bears extended their lead to 32 and were within a 3 of a running clock before a turnover. Jones went to his reserves and Pikeville closed the game with a 17-5 run.
Harlan County returns to action Tuesday in the WYMT Mountain Classic at Perry Central against Knott Central.

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Pikeville pulled away in the fourth quarter for a 39-28 win in junior varsity action. Carter Hurley led the Panthers with 17 points.
Jared Rhymer led the 2-2 Bears with eight points. Caleb Johnson scores seven. Ethan Rhymer added five. Jeremiah Clem and Samuel Henson chipped in with four each.