Huntland defeats CMS Lady Bulldogs
The Cornersville Middle School Lady Bulldogs fell to 0-2 on the young basketball season after dropping a 27-17 decision on the road to the Huntland Lady Hornets on Thursday night.
Having defeated CMS twice last year en route to finishing second in the TMSAA Class A Middle Tennessee Sectional Tournament, Huntland took command of Thursday's contest early and used stifling defensive pressure to build a 12-4 lead in the first half.
The Lady Hornets then opened up a 25-6 advantage late in the third quarter before cruising to the 10-point victory.
"Huntland has all their starters returning from last year so we've played two really good teams to start the season," said Cornersville coach Joy McMasters. "I do think we got tougher tonight and I believe the experience is going to help us."
Although the Lady Bulldogs outscored the Lady Hornets 7-0 at the foul line, Huntland finished with a 13-5 edge in field goals.
CMS did outrebound the Lady Hornets 36-17, but had trouble breaking Huntland's full court press and negated their edge on the boards by committing 30 turnovers. The Lady Hornets, conversely, finished with only 10 turnovers and recorded 24 steals.
"Our rebounding was strong again, but turnovers killed us especially early in the game," said McMasters.
Forwards Kennedy Wilson and Morgan Terry tallied seven points apiece to lead the Lady Bulldogs with Wilson notching 11 rebounds and two blocked shots. Brooke Defoe also added two points and eight rebounds for Cornersville, and Madison Hopkins chipped in one point and four rebounds.
Michaela Clark paced Huntland with seven points, while Ali Golden and Caylee McLennon each scored six points. Tara Cates also added four points for the Lady Hornets, and Bethany Hill and Jordan Sells both had two points.
Huntland got off to a fast start and jumped out to a 8-0 lead early in the first quarter with the help of four points from Cates and baskets from Clark and Golden.
Wilson converted a three-point play late in the first period to narrow the gap to 8-3, before Huntland tallied the next four points to open up a 12-3 advantage midway through the second.
After Terry made one-of-two free throws to trim the deficit to 12-4 at halftime, the Lady Hornets opened the third quarter with a 13-2 run to forge a 25-6 lead with 1:40 left in the stanza.
Cornersville rattled off five straight points thanks to a short jumper by Defoe and three fouls shots to make it 25-11 early in the fourth quarter before Sells hit a bank shot with 4:55 remaining to give Huntland a 27-11 advantage.
Terry then scored the last six points of the contest on a jumper, two free throws, and layup for the 27-17 final.