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Bears hold off rally to defeat Estill

After watching a 14-point halftime lead disappear on Saturday against Estill County in the PRTC Classic at Jackson County High School, the Harlan County Black Bears did what they have done in all five games so far this season — they found a way to win.

Senior guards Andrew Creech and Drew Nolan scored 19 and 14 points, respectively, as the Bears made the plays down the stretch for a 63-58 victory.

Senior guard Caleb Bonny led the 1-4 Engineers, ranked second in the 14th Region by the Louisville Courier-Journal, with 30 points.

Creech had three baskets in the first quarter, including a 3-pointer, as HCHS took a 21-14 lead. Nolan had six points and Creech added four as the Bears built a 36-22 advantage.

Bonny led the Engineers back with eight points in the third quarter to help Estill outscore Harlan County 22-10 to pull within two. Estill took a one-point lead in the fourth quarter before Nolan and Creech teamed for 11 points to help the Bears reclaim control.

Harlan County will play host to Harlan on Friday in a girls/boys doubleheader.

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Harlan County 63, Estill County 58

ESTILL COUNTY (1-4)

Joe Benton 1 2-2 4, Caleb Bonny 12 4-6 30, Kevin Richardson 3 0-0 7, J.T. O’Hair 4 3-3 12, Andrew Doty 1 1-1 3, Lane Doty 1 0-0 2. Totals: 22 10-14 58.

HARLAN COUNTY (5-0)

Andrew Creech 7 4-5 19, Drew Nolan 6 2-2 14, Alex Pace 2 4-5 8, Tyrese Simmons 3 2-2 9, Lamar Burkhart 1 1-2 4, Gabe Price 1 1-2 4, Patrick Bynum 0 0-0 0, Taylor Spurlock 2 0-0 5. Totals: 22 14-18 63.

Estill County 14 8 22 14 — 58

Harlan County 21 15 10 17 — 63

3-point goals: Estill County 4 (Bonny 2, Richardson 1, O’Hair 1), Harlan County 5 (Creech 1, Simmons 1, Burkhart 1, Price 1, Spurlock 1).