Lady Bulldogs falter late vs. Richland

Friday, December 12, 2014
Cornersville's (12) Taylor Powers scores on a layup in the first quarter against Richland. Tribune photos by Louis G. Scheuchenzuber

On Tuesday night, the Cornersville Lady Bulldogs were dealt their first District loss of the season when they dropped a 46-38 decision to the Richland Lady Raiders at home.

Richland (3-6, 3-0 District) held a 26-16 lead at the break, but the Lady Bulldogs (2-6, 1-1 District) came storming back in the second half and rallied to tie the game at 38-38 midway through the fourth quarter.

Cornersville's young squad, though, showed their inexperience at the end of the game, as the Lady Raiders outscored CHS 8-0 the rest of the way to remain perfect in District play.

Shooting woes

Despite a 6-of-8 shooting performance by freshman center Morgan Terry, Cornersville shot just 27 percent (14-of-51) from the field overall, which included a 4-of-22 effort from three point range, while hitting only 6-of-11 free throws. The Lady Bulldogs committed a season low seven turnovers and held a 9-7 edge on the offensive glass, but were outrebounded by Richland 29-23 overall.

"We knew they were going to double down on Morgan and that we were going to have to hit some shots. We just didn't shoot well from the field," said CHS coach Peyton Newton.

Terry broke double digits for the seventh time this season and led the Lady Bulldogs with 15 points, five rebounds, and two blocked shots. Madison Hopkins followed Terry with nine points, while Taylor Powers added seven points, six rebounds, and five assists. Emma Mitchell (three points), Carson Coble (two points), and Carly Salsman (two points) rounded out the scoring for Cornersville.

Cornersville's (44) Emma Mitchell goes up for a layup in the first quarter against Richland.

The Lady Raiders, meanwhile, shot 37 percent (16-of-43) from the field, made 4-of-15 attempts from beyond the arc, hit 10-of-13 free throws, and committed 12 turnovers. Shelby Allen paced Richland with a game high 17 points. Shannon Higgins also tallied 12 points for the Lady Raiders, while Cora Henson and Hannah Helton chipped in six and four points respectively.

Six-point run

Richland jumped out to an early 7-2 lead before Cornersville reeled off six straight points thanks to a Salsman jumper and a pair of layups from Terry and Powers to seize an 8-7 advantage late in the first quarter.

The Lady Raiders then surged back ahead by putting together a 14-3 run to take a 21-11 lead midway through the second quarter.

Coble scored on a layup to trim the deficit to 21-13, but Richland notched the next five points to open up a 26-13 advantage with :53 left in the half.

After tallying the final three points of the half on three foul shots to narrow the gap to 26-16, the Lady Bulldogs clawed their way back into the contest by outscoring the Lady Raiders 12-4 through the first 6:43 of the third quarter with the help of three points from Terry and treys from Hopkins, Mitchell, and Powers to slice the deficit to 30-28.

Richland rattled off six straight points to push their lead to 36-28 early in the fourth quarter, but Cornersville responded with a 10-2 spurt on the strength of seven points from Terry and a Hopkins three to knot the game at 38-38 with 4:20 left.

After Allen scored on an offensive put back to give the Lady Raiders a 40-38 advantage, the Lady Bulldogs saw their offense go cold, as they came up empty on their final six possessions while Richland hit six free throws over the final 2:06 to seal their 46-38 victory.