Bulldogs outlast Hampshire in overtime battle
The Cornersville Bulldogs (4-11, 2-4 District) snapped a four-game losing streak on Monday night by going on the road and defeating the Hampshire Hawks 87-81.
Cornersville appeared they would win the game in regulation after opening up a 71-66 lead with :33 left in the fourth quarter, but the Hawks (7-7, 3-3 District) closed the stanza with a 6-1 run to send the game into overtime tied at 72-72.
The Bulldogs, however, managed to regroup during the extra session and outscored Hampshire 15-9 in the overtime period to record their third straight win over the Hawks.
'Really big win'
"This is a really big win. Hampshire was in third place in the District so this was a big time win for us. We had a lot of guys step up tonight, but if we play smarter at the end of regulation we win by 10 points," said CHS coach Gerard Randolph. "I challenged them before the overtime started to take this game over and leave no doubt. They responded well."
Bolstered by a 5-of-7 shooting performance in overtime, the Bulldogs shot 43 percent (26-of-61) from the field, which included a 5-of-18 effort from three point range, while making 30-of-46 free throws. Cornersville did commit eight more turnovers (16-8) than the Hawks, but offset that by outrebounding Hampshire 56-33 and holding an 18-9 edge on the offensive glass.
Tate Lowery spearheaded the Bulldogs' offensive attack by pouring in a career high 38 points on 10-of-17 shooting to go along with 12 rebounds. Brian Lowe also set a career high scoring mark and tallied 20 points, 15 rebounds, and four assists, while David Looney added 10 points. Jamie Crowell notched eight points as well and Michael Allen chipped in six points. Jacob Reeves and Tyler Lowery rounded out the scoring for Cornersville with three and two points respectively.
The Hawks also finished with 26 field goals on 39 percent shooting and knocked down 7-of-24 attempts from beyond the arc, but made just 22-of-37 foul shots.
Hayden Lightfoot led four Hampshire players in double figures with 26 points. Fabian Bojorquez followed Lightfoot with 20 points, while Dustin Pinkleton and Kevin Harrington added 14 and 13 points respectively.
The Hawks built a 16-10 lead late in the first quarter before the Bulldogs put together a 13-4 run, highlighted by a Tate Lowery three-point play and a pair of treys from Crowell and Allen, to seize a 23-20 advantage early in the second period.
Hampshire rattled off five straight points to pull ahead 25-23, but Cornersville outscored the Hawks 12-5 over the next 3:16 with the help of five points from Lowe and a Crowell three to grab a 35-30 lead late in the half prior to taking a 35-33 advantage into the break.
After Tate Lowery scored on a layup at the start of the third quarter to make it 37-33, the Hawks tallied nine of the next 13 points to claim a 42-41 lead before the Bulldogs responded with a 16-7 spurt behind seven points apiece from Lowe and Tate Lowery to take a 57-49 lead early in the fourth period.
Hampshire outscored CHS 13-4 over the next 4:25 to briefly go up 62-61, but the Bulldogs went on a 10-4 run on the strength of seven points from Tate Lowery to open up a 71-66 advantage.
Lightfoot sandwiched a short bank shot and a layup around a Bulldog turnover to slice the deficit to 71-70 with :19 left before Lowe hit one-of-two free throws to make it 72-70.
The Hawks were called for traveling on their ensuing possession, but Lightfoot came to Hampshire's rescue by intercepting CHS' inbounds pass and scoring on a layup with :04 left to tie the game at 72-72.
The Bulldogs then regained their composure in overtime and opened the period with an 8-2 spurt behind four points from Looney and an Allen offensive put back to seize a 80-74 lead with 2:00 left.
Lightfoot canned a trey to close the gap to 80-77, but Cornersville outscored Hampshire 7-2 over the next 1:04 thanks to three free throws and a couple of layups from Lowe and Looney to forge a 87-79 advantage before taking home the 87-81 victory.