CMS Bulldogs bog down against Bobcats

Friday, October 25, 2013
Cornersville's Darien Bush shoots a layup while being fouled by Bridgeforth's Rashun Johnson in the third quarter. Tribune photos by Louis G. Scheuchenzuber

On Tuesday night, the Cornersville Middle School Bulldogs were unable to overcome a poor shooting performance, as they suffered a 21-11 road loss to the Bridgeforth Bobcats in their season opener.

After scoring just five points against Bridgeforth the last time they ventured down to Pulaski a year ago, Cornersville once again saw their offense go ice cold on Tuesday and trailed 11-0 at the end of the first half.

The Bulldogs finally broke their offensive drought in the second half and managed to cut the deficit to 16-10 midway through the fourth quarter before the Bobcats (1-0) eventually pulled away for the 10-point win.

Cornersville's Cameron Whitaker hits a runner over a pair of Bridgeforth defenders in the fourth quarter.

Cold shooting

Cornersville was unable to solve Bridgeforth's two-three zone and finished with just four field goals on 11 percent shooting, which included a 1-of-5 effort from three-point range. The Bulldogs did outrebound the Bobcats 28-26 and held a 12-10 edge on the offensive glass, but were hamstrung by 28 turnovers.

"Our effort was good, but offensively we didn't execute well. Bridgeforth caught me off guard because I didn't think they would play zone the whole time. I thought they would play more man-to-man," said CMS coach Gerard Randolph. "We also had too many mental mistakes. I told them if we would have done what we were supposed to do, we would have won because we played hard enough to win."

Kolbe McMahon led Cornersville with six points and 11 rebounds, while Cameron Whitaker and Henley Mitchell added four and one point respectively. Darien Bush failed to score, but tallied six rebounds, two assists, and two steals for the Bulldogs.

Bobcats suffer, too

Bridgeforth experienced their own offensive struggles and shot only 22 percent (9-of-41) from the floor overall while missing all eight attempts from beyond the arc and committing 20 turnovers.

Rashun Johnson was the lone player to find an offensive groove and paced the Bobcats with 12 points on 5-of-9 shooting. Bryce Wallace followed Johnson with four points, while Sam Hatfield and Brandon Rowan chipped in three and two points respectively.

The Bulldogs simply couldn't buy a bucket in the first half, as Bobcats built a 9-0 lead in the first quarter before opening up a 11-0 advantage at the end of the second period.

Finally, a score

McMahon finally got Cornersville on the board by hitting a layup with 3:43 left in the third quarter to trim the deficit to 11-2 before Bridgeforth tallied the next three points on a Hatfield layup and a Johnson free throw to make it 14-2 early in the fourth period.

The Bulldogs put together an 8-2 run behind four points apiece from McMahon and Whitaker to narrow the gap to 16-10 with 3:16 left, but the Bobcats dashed CMS' comeback hopes by scoring the next five points to stretch their lead to 21-10 prior to claiming the 21-11 victory.