CHARLOTTESVILLE — Picking up where they left off Wednesday, Eastern Hancock’s boys basketball team came out red-hot from the perimeter to get a big lead and — when Hagerstown battled back to make it close — relied on its inside game and defense for a 61-46 Senior Night win Friday.

After hitting 12 3-pointers in a convincing 80-21 win at Union (Modoc) earlier in the week, the Royals hit 7 of 9 from 3-point range in the first quarter to take a 23-11 lead.

Senior Charlie Halcomb hit 4 of 4 attempts and had 12 of his 15 points in the opening frame. Kayden Ruble, Luke Morris and Caden Powers also had first-quarter treys.

Hagerstown, by hitting the offensive glass — the Tigers outrebounded the Royals 14-6 in the quarter — rallied in the second quarter to get as close as three, 29-26, with 1:30 remaining, before Morris ended the half on a drive and bucket for a 31-26 advantage.

Eastern Hancock first-year head coach Brett Bechtel said his team, after getting off to a strong night from the perimeter, started settling for 3-point shots in the second quarter, which isn’t the style they usually play. The Royals missed all four of their 3-point attempts in the second quarter.

In the third quarter, the Royals clamped down on the Tigers, holding them to just six points. their lowest scoring period of the game. On offense, they were getting things done inside the arc, getting two-point buckets from Morris, Luke Schilling and Ruble to start the period on a 6-0 run.

“We said at the end of the first quarter, ‘don’t settle,’ that’s not necessarily our strength anyway, shooting nothing but jump shots,” Bechtel said. “We started to settle a little bit, and, one of our strengths all year has been rebounding, and it wasn’t in the second quarter.

“We take that personal when other teams get offensive rebounds. That’s been something we’ve been pretty good. We wanted to make sure all rebounds were ours in the second half.”

Eastern Hancock helped force five third-quarter turnovers, the most Hagerstown had in any period.

The Tigers scored four straight points to cut Eastern’s lead to seven 37-30, but the Royals followed with the next 11 points.

“We aren’t going to make runs with our offense, we’re going to make runs with our defense,” Bechtel added. “We don’t have a ton of fire power to make runs consistently on offense. We’re going to make runs by getting four, five, six, seven, eight stops in a row, and then we’re going to get our buckets.”

All 11 points came from seniors. Caiden Willis and Morris each had two two-point field goals and Halcomb finished it with the only made 3-pointer after the first quarter.

Bechtel praised his defense for holding Hagerstown to 46 points, six under its scoring average. It was the team’s 17th time this season holding an opponent under its average.

Eastern’s three seniors were among the top four scorers Friday. Morris had one more point than Halcomb to lead the Royals with 16. Willis scored eight. Ruble was a third double-figure scorer with 13.

Landon Lawson led Hagerstown (6-13) with 14 points. Kaagen Kendall came off the bench to add 13, including 11 in the first half and nine in the second quarter.

The Royals begin tournament play Tuesday at the Triton Central Sectional. They’ll play Indianapolis Scecina (8-15), the team that knocked them out of last year’s tournament, at 7 p.m.

Bechtel said Scecina plays a physical style, similar to Hagerstown, and is hopeful Friday’s performance will help them get ready for the sectional.

“It’s going to be physical like it was tonight” Bechtel added. “This is a good one to prepare us for Tuesday.”

Eastern Hancock 61, Hagerstown 46


Eastern Hancock;23;8;17;13;—;61

Hagerstown (6-13): Cole Tracy 1 0-0 2, Anthony Kelley 1 4-4 7, Landon Lawson 6 2-2 14, Grant Semler 3 0-0 6, Isaac Schmitz 1 2-2 4, Kaagen Kendall 5 2-2 13, Kendrick Herr 0 0-0 0. Totals: 17 10-10 46.

Eastern Hancock (12-10): Caiden Willis 4 0-0 8, Luke Schilling 1 2-2 4, Kayden Ruble 5 2-2 13, Luke Morris 5 5-8 16 Charlie Halcomb 5 0-0 15, Caden Powers 1 0-2 3, Eli Manship 1 0-0 2, Garrett Shaw 0 0-0 0. Totals: 22 9-14 61.

3-point goals: Hagerstown 2 (Kelley, Kendall). Eastern Hancock 8 (Halcomb 5, Powers, Ruble, Morris).