GEORGETOWN — Just when Bryan Station made a move to take control of a game and the district race, Scott County yanked both away.
The sixth-rated Cardinals used a 17-0 run that took less than four minutes in the third quarter and pulled away to a 76-61 victory.
Trent Gilbert, battling strep throat, led the winners with 34 points and nine rebounds. Quin Richardson matched Gilbert's four three-pointers and wound up with 17 points. Tony Martini grabbed 10 of the Cards' 43 rebounds.
"Quin Richardson hit a couple big shots there," Scott County Coach Billy Hicks said. "That got us going and I thought that sparked us. And defensively, we came out and made some big plays and contained the ball."
Trailing 5-0, the Cardinals scored the next nine points.
Tied at 9, they closed the quarter with seven in a row.
The lead grew to as many as 10, 34-24, before the Defenders scored eight in a row to make it 34-32 at halftime.
"We worked our butts off to get a 10-point lead and then in the last minute of the first half, they cut it to two," Hicks said.
Baskets by Tyler Smith and Daquice Allen to open the second half gave Bryan Station a 36-34 lead.
The Defenders (14-8) knew that, with a win, they would wrap up the No. 1 seed in the 42nd District with a 4-1 record.
Scott County (15-6, 2-2) knew that, too, and answered.
Richardson started the 17-0 run by drilling back-to-back three-pointers.
Gilbert followed with a 15-footer, Martini with a put-back and Gilbert with a fast-break basket.
Jalen Haddix sank two free throws and Gilbert capped the knockout punch with a three-pointer to make the score 51-36.
Gilbert finished 10-for-17 from the field, 4-for-9 from three-point range and was perfect on 10 free throws. His first four free throws came after making steals in the first quarter.
"It got in my mind that the ball could go in the hole. I'd been having a rough shooting game the last few games," he said. "Then just went from there."
Richardson gave all the backup needed.
"He was having a rough shooting first half and then came out second half," Gilbert said. "I told him you've just got to keep shooting it and it'll go. That's what he did, and me and him both were just clicking on all cylinders and just looking for each other and looking for everybody else."
The lead grew to 73-52.
Bryan Station Coach Michael Allen said his team could have taken better shots.
"But I thought the turning point of the game was the third quarter," he said. "The third quarter, they really blitzed us. We fought back but we ran out of gas. The kids played hard, but we're just now getting back in sync."
Daquice Allen was playing his first game since turning an ankle. Marcellous Washington and Jordan Henry have battled recent illnesses. Washington led the Defenders with 18 points and Allen had 13. Tyler Smith had 10 of his team's 34 rebounds and eight points.
Scott County, which lost 69-62 at Bryan Station on Jan. 11, is back in the district hunt.
"We definitely needed to get this win," Gilbert said. "We need to get the next win Tuesday night (vs. Henry Clay) so we can hold the first seed. But right now we've just got to prepare and get ready for Sayre Friday night."
Scott Co. 76, Bryan Station 61
BRYAN STATION (14-8) — Allen 13, Smith 8, Henry 3, Washington 18, Morton 6, Walker 7, Hipps 3, Hunter 3.
SCOTT CO. (15-6) — Haddix 8, Martini 4, Short 6, Richardson 17, Gilbert 34, Portwood 4, Crank 3.
Bryan Station 9 23 10 19—61
Scott County 16 18 23 19—76
Mark Maloney: (859) 231-3229. Twitter: @markmaloneyhl. Blog: markmaloney.bloginky.com