Second quarter surge propels Raiders past Bulldogs
On Friday night, the Cornersville Bulldogs fell to 0-3 on the young season when they lost 66-50 to the Moore County Raiders in Lynchburg.
Having defeated Moore County 65-59 in their lone meeting last year, the Bulldogs only trailed 23-19 early in the second quarter before leading scorer Tate Lowery was forced to the bench with his third foul.
The Raiders (4-1) took advantage of Lowery's absence on the court and outscored Cornersville 20-4 over the final five and half minutes of the half to take a 43-23 advantage into the break. Moore County then opened up a 57-28 advantage midway through the third quarter before coasting to the 16-point victory.
"Having Tate get in foul trouble hurt us a lot. I was hoping to keep him in, but he's an aggressive player and picked up that third foul," said CHS coach Gerard Randolph. "Moore County played well though so you have to give them credit. They defended well and made us turn it over. We also had too many defensive mistakes. We lost guys on defense and made it easy for them."
The Raiders were able to get to the rim for much of the evening and shot a blistering 57 percent (25-of-44) from the field, which included a 4-of-9 effort from beyond the arc. Moore County did commit 22 turnovers, but outrebounded the Bulldogs 27-17 and held a 9-2 edge on the offensive glass.
Ryan Northcutt and Jordan Barrier led the Raiders with 15 points apiece, while Blydge Farrar and Will Slatten both tallied eight points. Jay Layman also added six points for Moore County.
Cornersville shot a respectable 49 percent (17-of-35) from the floor and knocked down 4-of-10 three-point attempts, but were hamstrung by 23 turnovers.
Lowery paced the Bulldogs with 12 points, four assists, and three steals. Zack Smith and Cody Caneer tallied eight and seven points respectively as well, while David Looney and Michael Allen each had five points. Jamie Crowell also notched four points, and Hunter Swinney, Austin Ridinger, Kolbe McMahon, and Ben Taylor chipped in two points apiece. Dillard Hatchett rounded out the scoring for CHS with one point.
The Raiders jumped out to an early 9-3 lead before Smith made a layup to cut the deficit to 9-5 midway through the first quarter.
Moore County then tallied the next four points to open up a 13-5 advantage, but the Bulldogs went on a 10-6 run, highlighted by an Allen trey, to close the gap to 19-15 early in the second period.
After Moore County extended their lead to 21-15 on a layup by Montana Driver, Cornersville sliced the deficit to 23-19 thanks to a Caneer layup and two free throws from Lowery.
The Raiders, though, began to pull away after that point and outscored the CHS 18-2 over the next five minutes to forge a 41-21 lead late in the second quarter.
Following a layup by Taylor, which narrowed the gap to 41-23, Doran Noble hit two free throws to give Moore County a 43-23 advantage at the break before the Raiders opened the third quarter with a 14-5 spurt to extend their lead to 57-28.
Cornersville closed the third quarter with a 9-0 run on the strength of four points from Lowery and a Looney three to whittle the deficit to 57-37, but the Raiders notched seven of the first 11 points of the fourth period to make it 64-41.
The Bulldogs then outscored Moore County 9-2 the rest of the way with the help of a Lowery trey and baskets by Caneer and Looney for the 66-50 final.