Collinwood clips Lady Bulldogs

Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Tribune photo by Louis G. Scheuchenzuber Cornersville's Brittany Umbles scores on a layup in the first quarter over Collinwood's Alexis Haddock.

Coming off a 60-48 loss to Wayne County the previous day, the Cornersville Lady Bulldogs (6-9) turned in a more determined effort on Friday, but were unable to take home a win and dropped a hard fought 56-54 decision to the Collinwood Trojanettes at the Richland Christmas Classic.

After taking a 23-18 lead into halftime, Collinwood held a 46-40 advantage late in the fourth quarter, but the Lady Bulldogs battled back and sliced the deficit to 55-54 with :11 left.

The Trojanettes (11-3) then stretched their lead to two points on a Chaley Whitehead free throw before the Lady Bulldogs missed a three-pointer as time expired.

"It was like night and day compared to how we played against Wayne County," said Cornersville coach Micah Landers. "Today we came away with a lot of things that I could teach them how to be a better ballclub. I thought we gave a wonderful effort and that the girls played their guts out. We can build on today's game."

Although Cornersville shot only 30 percent (13-of-44) from the field, which included a 2-of-11 performance from three-point range, the Lady Bulldogs cashed in at the foul line and hit 26-of-32 free throws.

Center Brittany Umbles led Cornersville with 22 points on 7-of-10 shooting to go along with 10 rebounds and three steals. Brooke Holt followed Umbles with 10 points, while Makenzie Hopkins and Kaitlyn Rogers tallied eight points apiece with Hopkins recording four assists and three steals. Martha Jane McMasters and Kaleigh Welch rounded out the scoring for the Lady Bulldogs with five and one point respectively.

The Trojanettes mustered only 13 field goals on 28 percent shooting and made just 3-of-13 attempts from beyond the arc, but went to the free throw line 40 times, hitting 27.

Alexis Haddock paced Collinwood with 12 points, while Lexie Risner and Katie Hanback added 10 and eight points respectively.

After the Trojanettes jumped out to an early 7-2 lead, Cornersville tied the game at 7-7 midway through the first quarter thanks to a Rogers three-point play and a offensive put back by Umbles.

Collinwood then ripped off 11 straight points to grab a 18-7 advantage with 6:57 left in the second period, but the Lady Bulldogs closed the half with an 11-5 spurt on the strength of six points from Umbles and three points from Rogers to narrow the gap to 23-18.

In the third, Cornersville put together a 15-8 run behind eight points from Umbles, four points from Hopkins, and a Holt trey to seize a 33-31 lead before the Trojanettes tallied five straight points to pull ahead 36-33 with :14 left in the period.

The Lady Bulldogs outscored Collinwood 7-4 over the next three minutes with the help of a layup by Umbles and five free throws to knot the score at 40-40, but the Trojanettes notched the next six points to take a 46-40 lead with 2:00 left in the fourth quarter.

Cornersville whittled the deficit to 53-51 with :24 remaining thanks to seven foul shots and layups from Umbles and Hopkins before Hanna Littrell hit two free throws to give Collinwood a 55-51 advantage.

After McMasters nailed a trey from the left corner to close the gap to 55-54, Whitehead hit the first of two foul shots to make it 56-54 with 8.2 seconds left.

Although Whitehead missed the second foul shot, Hopkins was unable to connect on a contested three-pointer on Cornersville's final possession.