That being said, Wright credited the Maroons on coming away with the victory, stating that Pulaski simply did everything better than his team did.
“You’ve got to give Pulaski a lot of credit, I thought they played really well,” said the Southwestern coach. “They shot the better than we did, they rebounded better than we did, they scored down lot better than we did, they shot the ball better than we did, they shot free-throws better than we did, they held on to the ball better than we did, and they seemed to play with a purpose. When that happens, you’re going to get a ‘L.’”
Johnson led all scorers in the game with 23 points and was named the Player of the Game. Taylor Gover finished right behind Johnson with 22 points and was tabbed as the first recipient ever of the Coach Avery Hatfield Award, which was awarded to the tournament’s most outstanding player.
Two other Maroons joined Johnson and Gover in double figures, as Tyler Goins tallied 14 points and Blake Burton scored 11 points.
Southwestern was led by Edwards’ 20 points and eight rebounds. Kapinga chimed with 17 points, while Justin Schulz scored 13 points.
Fouls were aplenty in this one, as both teams combined to shoot 60 free-throws. Southwestern went 21 of 33 from the line, while the Maroons made 17 of their 27 shots at the charity stripe.
Southwestern will return to action on Thursday, January 3rd, when they will host Somerset for the second time in less than a week. Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. at the Wigwam, the home of the Warriors.
Pulaski will hit the hardwood again tonight, when they will travel east to face the Corbin Redhounds.
PC - 17 22 16 25 - 80
SW - 16 20 12 18 - 66
PULASKI COUNTY (9-3): Johnson 23, Gover 22, Goins 14, Burton 11, Ross 6, Laign 3, Helton 1.
SOUTHWESTERN (12-3): Edwards 20, Kapinga 17, Schulz 13, Collier 4, Gaskin 3, Groves 3.