Capital slips past Big Reds, 64-60

PARKERSBURG – It’s called the free throw line, or even the charity stripe. But, it was neither Thursday night at Memorial Fieldhouse as host Parkersburg and visiting Capital combined to hit on just 33 of 66 attempts from the line in the Cougars’ 64-60 Mountain State Athletic Conference matchup.

The loss drops the Big Reds to 5-10 overall with a road game at Riverside slated for next Wednesday night while Capital improved to 7-9 on the campaign.

Parkersburg jumped out to an 18-14 lead after the first eight minutes of play behind the play of Trevor Britton, Dru Aldridge and Braeden Cabbil, who each bucketed a pair of baskets during the eight-minute period. The Cougars kept the game close, however, as Carrington Morris tallied six of his game-high 31 points during the frame.

The Big Reds increased their advantage to seven, 25-18, thanks to a 7-4 run to open the second quarter. Aldridge, who finished with seven points, got things rolling with a triple at the 7:02 mark while Jordan Colebank’s one-for-two effort at the free throw line handed the hosts their biggest advantage with 4:18 remaining until the intermission.

Parkersburg would manage only a rebound bucket by Ben Umpleby over the final four minutes of the first half while Capital tallied 15 points down the stretch to take a 33-27 lead to the locker rooms.

The second half opened with each team recording a deuce-Morris for Capital and Umpleby for the Big Reds-before Britton, who finished with a team-high 21 points, started a 10-3 run by the hosts the culminated in a 39-38 lead on two made charity shots by Britton.

A Chad Newell triple with 3:55 showing on the clock pushed the Big Reds’ lead back up to four, 42-38, but would also be the final points Parkersburg would score in the frame as the Cougars’ Morris would make good on three-of-four shots from the free throw line and reserve Brice Goldsmith hit a layup with one tick remaining on the clock to hand the lead back to the visitors, 43-42.

The final eight minutes of action was a parade to the free throw line as three Big Reds (Umpleby, Britton and Adrian Webster) and one Cougar (Morris) fouled out.

But, before he collected his fifth foul of the game, Morris was able to score 10 of his game-high points as Capital took the lead for good, 50-49, on a putback by Morris with 4:08 left in the game.