After two weeks of being idle on the schedule due to the holiday break, the Fairfield Lions returned to the court for a non-conference road game at Paint Valley. Though the Lions were able to keep the score close, the Bearcats were able to take and keep the lead in the final frame, defeating the Lions, 59-55 Wednesday at PVHS.

The Lions and Bearcats played closely throughout with Fairfield leading 15-13 after the first quarter, and after each team scored 13 points in the second, the Lions led 28-26 at halftime. PV outscored the visitors, 18-16 in the third for a 44-44 score after three frames.

In the final frame, it was the Bearcats who were able to fend off the Lions, winning the quarter 15-11 and taking the game by the four-point differential.

“We were ready to get back on the court after the break, but we just didn’t make shots and shoot well,” FHS head coach Everett Snyder told The Highland County Press. “We wanted to hold (Dylan) Swingle to below 20 points and contain the others, but they had (Drake) Purdum score 17 for them, and we didn’t stop them in that aspect.

“It was a back-and-forth game, close all the way through. We had an opportunity late to tie them, but we didn’t.”

Fairfield was led by Jensen Daulton with 28 points and four steals. Daulton totaled seven two-point baskets, four 3-pointers and went 2-of-4 from the free-throw line.

The Lions also had six points and three steals from Klay Walker, with the senior sinking two 3-pointers. Wyatt Evans and Tucker Ayres each scored five points, while Cody Gragg (three steals) and Mason Cain each finished with four points. Rounding out the FHS scoring was Jesse Current with three points.

For the Bearcats, Purdum led with 17 points, and Swingle totaled 16 points.

Next for the Lions are two weekend Highland County rivalry games, beginning with a Friday night home game versus SHAC rival Lynchburg-Clay, then on Saturday, the Lions travel to Greenfield to take on the McClain Tigers.