After Holden Warmath scored with 1:25 left in the first half, Covington led Brighton by 18 and the game appeared to be all but over.
Brighton steadily got back in the game, however. Jalen Terry came up with a 3-point play and after Emmanuel Thurman scored with 5:36 left in the game, Brighton trailed just 55-46.
A Covington 8-0 run followed, however, punctuated by Tylan Rivers’ fifth 3-pointer of the game and Covington cruised from there to a 75-51 district win Tuesday night in Covington.
“I told the guys we have to run our stuff, handle the pressure and be fundamentally sound,” Brighton coach Stan Gatlin said. “Just rely on the fundamentals. We stopped doing that.”
Warmath and Rivers were big problems all night for Brighton. Rivers hit three 3-pointers in the first half and led all scorers with 25 points. Warmath kept getting the lane to make floaters and finished 22, including 14 in the first half.
Terry led Brighton with 13 points, C.J. Bonner had 11 and Aiden Maclin added 10.
Brighton (4-13 overall, 0-4 District 14-AAA) is still winless in district play, but played Ripley and Munford to close games last week. Two of the team’s starters were out Tuesday night only four players have played in every game this year.
“We’re extremely young, but the guys are giving me everything they’ve got,” Gatlin said. “They’re learning the game. I see progress, but at the same time our lack of experience is still a problem. Once we figure out who we are, who we’re going to play, we’ll be better.”
Covington improved to 8-8 overall and 3-1 in district play, which puts them in a tie for first with Ripley, which Covington hosts on Tuesday. Brighton returns to league action Friday at home vs. Haywood.