Bell shot an impressive 61 percent (14 of 23) from the field in the first half to build a 42-21 cushion that Harlan could never overcome.
"They didn't miss in the first half," said Bell County coach Casey Lester. "Of course it hurts when you don't get a hand in somebody's face."
"Defensively, we're playing pretty good right now," said Bell County coach Eddie Whitaker. "
With the defense playing better, Whitaker has turned his attention to the Bobcats' struggling offense. Bell scored just six points in the third period, hitting just two of 14 shots.
"In the third quarter we just scored six points," he said. "We're just lucky they were only able to score six points. It's not that we're not getting shots, we're just not making them. We're not overly offensively talented. That's why we have to get it done on defense."
Harlan shot a meager 24 percent in the first half (six of 25), but bounced back to play Bell to within three in the second half. The early deficit was too much to overcome, however.
"We just weren't ready to play tonight, mentally," said Lester. "The kids played hard, I can't fault them for that, but mentally I just don't think we were well prepared to play."
As was the case all night, Bell used a balanced scoring attack to jump out early. Six players scored at least two points in the opening frame with Jeremy Sanders leading the way with six.
Jared Meadors had two of Harlan's three first-quarter field goals, both coming on putbacks, as the Dragons trailed 19-9 after one.
Bell continued its onslaught in the second frame as Larry Helton came off the bench for nine of his game-high 17 points. The Bobcats missed only three of 11 shots in the period as their lead grew to 21 at the break.
Eleven Bell players saw action in the first half with 10 reaching the scoring column.
"Early in the season when we won a big game, Larry (Helton) would have 20-some and Jordan Marcum would have 18 or 19, but neither one of them are on pace right now," said Whitaker. "We're just trying to spread it around and get a few more points out of everybody."
Both teams struggled in a woeful third quarter, combining to go five of 22 from the field.
Meadors had two of Harlan's baskets in the period. The junior center finished with nine points to lead the Green Dragons.
A layup by Jeremiah Gibson off a pass from Sanders put Bell on top 48-27 heading into the final frame.
John Smith opened the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer to trim the margin to 18, but Harlan never got closer as Bell used nine offensive rebounds and converted several in second-chance points.
"That was one of the things we really stressed at halftime," said Whitaker. "They had outrebounded us offensively in the first half. So we focused on that and challenged everybody to go out and do a better job."
"That's one thing we talked about after the game," said Lester, "we're going to do some blocking-out drills tomorrow."
Gibson led the Bobcats on the boards with 10 rebounds. He also added 11 points in a strong performance off the bench.
Harlan's Casey Huff had a 3-pointer and Ryan Etter added a basket late as both teams cleared their benches.
Bell County (12-9) returns to action Friday, playing host to 15th Region power Shelby Valley. Harlan (3-19) will host Knox Central on Friday.