Britton Miller puts up a shot over a Versailles defender on Saturday. ©Ben Robinson/Color Green Photo

COVINGTON – The Covington Buccaneers faced a stiff challenge on Saturday against Versailles and came up on the short end of a 59-43 final score.

Versailles jumped out fast in the first period by scoring 21 points, but Covington was able to stay within striking distance thanks to a strong effort by Bryson Hite as he scored nine of the 13 points put up by the Buccs in the opening frame.

The Buccs matched the Tigers point-for-point in the second and then closed the gap to 43-37 at the end of the third. Again, Bryson Hite continued his hot shooting by leading the Buccs with a combined 12 points in the second and third period.

Unfortunately the Buccaneers struggled hitting shots in the final period as they only scored six points, which led to a 16-6 scoring advantage for Versailles down the stretch.

The overall difference was Versailles’ ability to get to the free throw line as the Tigers converted 18 of 22 free throws. Covington was successful at the line as well by making 11 of 12 free throws, but just couldn’t get to the line as often as Versailles.

Also, Versailles had much more success inside as it converted on 16 two-point buckets to just seven for Covington. The Buccs hit some big shots from behind the arc by dropping in six three-pointers, while Versailles made three.

Bryson Hite led Covington with a game-high 21 points and was the lone Buccaneer to reach double digits in scoring. Versailles had four players score in double digits.

The loss drops Covington’s record to 4-9 on the season with a critical league matchup at home on Tuesday against Bethel.

Tanner Palsgrove scores on a runner against Versailles. ©Ben Robinson/Color Green Photo

Covington – 13 – 22 – 37 – 43
Versailles – 21 – 30 – 43 – 59

Bryson Hite – 21
Britton Miller – 9
Tanner Palsgrove – 5
Brogen Angle – 5
Gunner Kimmel – 2
Connor Humphrey – 1

Heitkamp – 16
D. Ahrens – 15
Watren – 12
Griesdorn – 10
Wilker – 4
Schmitmeyer – 2

Covington – Bryson Hite (3), Tanner Palsgrove (1), Brogen Angle (1), Britton Miller (1)
Versailles – Watren (2), Heitkamp (1)

Bryson Hite led the Buccs with a game-high 21 points. ©Ben Robinson/Color Green Photo