The Bowling Green boys’ basketball team mirrored senior guard Dorian Morrison during Monday’s Region 4 Tournament semifinals contest against Logan County: battered and bruised and seemingly down for the count.

But like Morrison, Bowling Green got off the mat and delivered the knockout punch – pulling away for a 64-52 win over the Cougars.

Morrison scored a game-high 23 points as Bowling Green (26-7) surged ahead at the end of the third quarter and outscored Logan County 23-12 in the fourth to earn a seventh straight trip to the region championship game.

“I just had the feeling this could be my last game,” Morrison said. “As a senior, I didn’t want it to be my last game so I stepped up and helped us get the win.”

Securing a seventh straight trip to the region title game didn’t come without a serious threat from a Logan County team that entered on a 24-game win streak.

The Purples scored the first four points, but Logan County (28-4) scored the next nine to take the lead.

The Cougars kept the lead throughout the first half, pushing the score to 23-16 after a 3-pointer from Dalton Thompson with 3:44 left in the half. Morrison would spark a rally, scoring seven points in the final three minutes – including a 3 from half court at the buzzer to cut the deficit to 30-28 at halftime. It was Morrison’s first made 3-pointer of the season.

“I don’t know how to explain it,” Morrison said. “It felt like a good shot.”

The shot didn’t come without a price as during a celebration with his teammate Morrison was inadvertently head butted, coming out of the locker room at the half with an ice pack over his swollen left eye.

Morrison began the second half on the bench, but the Purples tied the score on the opening possession only to have Logan County score five straight to regain the advantage. The Cougars extended the margin to 40-33 after Anthony Woodard’s three-point play with 3:25 left in the third, but Morrison – who got back in the game about a minute earlier – returned to score back-to-back layups during an 8-0 run that gave BG a 41-40 lead heading into the fourth quarter.

“At first I couldn’t see anything,” Morrison said. “But then my vision started coming back so I was like, ‘I’m good.’ “

Logan County tried to stay within striking distance, until a Turner Buttry 3 with 5:02 sparked a 9-0 spurt that gave Bowling Green some separation – pushing BG’s advantage to 58-46 with 2:21 left. Logan County was unable to get closer than eight the rest of the way.

Morrison finished 9-for-9 from the field and added five rebounds and four assists. Buttry finished with 11 points, while Isaiah Mason, Jaxson Banks and Dez Wilson added nine points each.

“Kids that love the game, kids play for their team, play for their school – that’s important,” BG coach Derrick Clubb said. “These guys play for that jersey right there. It’s a fun group to be around.

“Sometimes you have to find a way to win. I’m just proud of these guys, how aggressive they stayed. To these guys’ credit, they never quit playing and never quit believing.”

Woodard led the Cougars with 21 points, while Thompson and Jose Nazario added 12 points each. The loss ended a magical season for Logan County, who hadn’t lost since Dec. 21 and won 28 out of 29 after an 0-2 start.

“At the end of the day we just didn’t make enough plays,” Logan County coach John Tinsley said. “It just came down to a game of runs and they got the last run. They are a good basketball team, but we still feel like we are as good as they are. They just had the last run.

“What a year – 24 in a row. I can’t give these guys enough credit. They had a can’t-lose attitude all year. Just a couple of baskets the other way and this is a completely different basketball game.”

Bowling Green will advance to face a familiar opponent – the Warren Central Dragons. It will be the third straight region title game between the two schools and the fourth meeting this season. Warren Central has won the previous two region title games, but the Purples are 2-1 against Warren Central this season – including a 57-51 win in the District 14 title game on Feb. 28.

“We are just gonna play tomorrow,” Clubb said. “They worked really hard to get themselves in this spot. I’m excited to come over here with them tomorrow and watch them play.”

LCHS 15 15 10 12 – 52

BGHS 14 14 13 23 – 64

LC – Woodard 21, Thompson 12, Nazario 12, Basham 4, Vick 3.

BG – Morrison 23, Buttry 11, Mason 9, Banks 9, Wilson 9, Huddleston 2, Flanary 1.{&end}

– Follow prep sports reporter Micheal Compton on Twitter @mcompton428 or visit bgdailynews.com.

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