The Knights need a win.

After opening its district schedule with a 60-45 home loss to Waco Midway, Harker Heights rebounded, winning three of its next four games to position itself among the top four seeds.

The Knights, however, are slowly sliding out of playoff contention.

Harker Heights suffered its third consecutive defeat Tuesday, falling to the Panthers 59-47 to begin the second round of district competition.

Midway quickly claimed control of the contest, scoring the first 18 points before Harker Heights senior guard Dillon Gooding made a 3-pointer to enter the second quarter trailing 18-3.

The Knights rebounded from the slow start, outscoring the Panthers by three points during the duration of the game, but it was not enough.

Gooding connected on another shot from behind the 3-point arc with less than a minute remaining in regulation to pull Harker Heights within single digits, 56-47, after trailing by as many as 24 points in the third quarter.

The loss comes on the heels of a disappointing 68-66 double overtime loss at home to Belton.

Now, in an ultra competitive race, the Knights enter tonight’s contest situated sixth in the standings with a 3-5 district record.

Midway sits atop the eight-team field at 7-1, while No. 25 Ellison follows at 6-2 with Shoemaker one game back at 5-3. Killeen and Belton are each ahead of the Knights with identical 4-4 records.

San Angelo Central (2-6) and Copperas Cove (1-7) round out the standings.

Harker Heights will look to end its skid at home tonight against the Bobcats. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.

In the first encounter, the Knights needed overtime before escaping San Angelo with a 77-74 victory.

Other district games tonight include the Eagles at Copperas Cove, the Panthers at Killeen and the Grey Wolves at Belton.

Harker Heights will return to the court Tuesday, traveling to play Ellison with the goal of splitting the season series after the Eagles won 38-36 on Jan. 5.

The Knights close their regular season schedule with home games against Copperas Cove (Feb. 2) and Killeen (Feb. 9), and they will travel to face Shoemaker (Feb. 6) and Belton (Feb. 13).

Contact Clay Whittington at clayw@kdhnews.com

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