Drew Parks and Caleb Hogue put on a shooting clinic in the first half as Harlan defeated Middlesboro 61-38 on Tuesday. The duo combined for six 3-pointers in the the first two quarters to give the Green Dragons a 31-18 edge heading into halftime.
Parks finished the game with a team-high 14 points. Hogue finished with 13 points while shooting 60 percent from 3-point range in his first action of the season.
A strong defensive effort by Noah Busroe and Killian Ledford aided Harlan in the victory. Both players grabbed 12 boards apiece. Busroe and Ledford were two points shy of earning a double-double — scoring eight points each.
Turnovers had a negative impact on Middlesboro. After limiting turnovers in the past few games, the Yellow Jackets struggled against the Green Dragons.
Christian Hubbard led Middlesboro in scoring with 10 points. Tyler Wilson finished the game with eight points. Drake Thomas, who leads the team in scoring on the season, was held to seven points.
Hogue showed the crowd that he was going to be a threat by scoring Harlan’s first five points of the game. Following a 3 from Hubbard, Cody Smith scored to tie the game at five points apiece.
The Green Dragons went on a 13-2 run to end the first quarter with an 18-7 lead over the Jackets. Hogue scored three of his baskets in the quarter from long range, including a 3 at the buzzer. Curry added a 3 of his own during the first during the quarter.
Harlan outscored Middlesboro 13-11 in the second quarter. It was Parks who caught fire for the Dragons this time, hitting back-to-back 3s midway through the quarter before adding another at the buzzer.
Middlesboro tried to climb back into the game early in the second behind shots from Hubbard and Smith. Midway through the quarter, Hubbard narrowed the lead to 20-13 with a basket.
Harlan increased the lead to 13 before Zach Raney hit a 3 with under a minute to go in the half, decreasing the deficit to 28-18. Park’s three at the buzzer gave the Green Dragons a 13-point lead heading into halftime.
Harlan pulled away in the second half. They outscored the Jackets 13-12 in the third quarter and 17-8 in the fourth.
Middlesboro (1-15, 0-3) battles crosstown rival Bell County (8-7) at Log Mountain o Friday. Harlan (10-6, 2-2) will travel to Central (Va.) on Saturday.
Reach Anthony Cloud at 606-302-9090 or on Twitter @AnthonyCloudMDN