Huntland holds off Bulldogs on Senior Night
The Huntland Hornets (16-9) spoiled Senior Night for the Cornersville Bulldogs when they defeated CHS 61-47 on Tuesday to complete the sweep of the season series.
Huntland had whipped Cornersville 76-47 in their previous meeting on Jan. 8, but the Bulldogs (2-20) managed to stay within striking distance for much of Tuesday's contest and trailed just 45-38 early in the fourth quarter.
Cornersville, however, couldn't get over the hump, as the Hornets outscored the Bulldogs 16-9 over the final 7:15 to pull away for the 14-point victory.
"We got tired at the end and not having the ability to run guys in there really hurt," said CHS coach Gerard Randolph. "I was encouraged by how we played though because they were a good ballclub. We need to build on this. If we keep playing like this, we can hang with some teams."
Despite hitting just 2-of-8 three-point attempts, Huntland shot 47 percent (25-of-53) from the field. The Hornets also committed only 12 turnovers, outrebounded Cornersville 39-25, and held a 10-8 edge on the offensive glass.
Junior guard Kobe Foster turned in a strong all-around performance and led Huntland with 17 points, five assists, three steals, and three blocked shots. Forward Tyler Smith followed Foster with 16 points, while reserve center D.J. Taylor added 11 points.
"I knew we couldn't stop the Foster kid, but I think we contained him some. They really hurt us in the post. Their post players did a good job of keeping the ball high and finishing," said Randolph.
The Bulldogs committed only 13 turnovers and knocked down 7-of-18 attempts from beyond the arc, but shot just 32 percent (18-of-56) from the floor overall.
Senior guard Zack Smith paced three Cornersville players with 16 points on 6-of-12 shooting, which included a 4-of-7 effort from three-point range. Tate Lowery also tallied 12 points, six steals, and four assists for the Bulldogs, while Jamie Crowell and David Looney notched 11 and five points respectively.
The Hornets buzzed out to an early 9-4 lead before Kolbe McMahon and Crowell scored consecutive layups to cut the deficit to 9-8 late in the first quarter.
After Huntland notched the last four points of the first period to open up a 13-8 advantage, Cornersville opened the second quarter with an 8-2 run, highlighted by a pair of threes from Smith and Crowell, to seize a 16-15 advantage midway through stanza.
The Hornets controlled the rest of the second period and closed the half with a 16-1 spurt to take a 31-17 lead into break before Huntland guard Hunter Bradley hit one-of-two free throws at the start of the third quarter to make it 32-17.
The Bulldogs tried to claw their way back into the game and outscored the Hornets 16-10 over the next four minutes with the help of eight points from Lowery and a couple of treys from Smith and Looney to narrow the gap to 42-33.
After Foster tallied three straight points on a free throw and a jumper to stake the Hornets to a 45-33 lead, Crowell scored on an offensive put back in the waning moments of the third period before Smith buried a three at the start of the fourth quarter to whittle the deficit to 45-38.
Huntland, though, dashed Cornersville's comeback hopes by engineering a 12-1 run to stretch their lead to 57-39 with 4:20 left.
The Bulldogs then outscored the Hornets 8-4 the rest of the way with the help of a Smith three and a pair of layups from Lowery and Crowell for the 61-47 final.
Cornersville: 8 9 17 12 = 47
Huntland 13 18 14 16 = 61
Cornersville: Zack Smith 16, Tate Lowery 12, Jamie Crowell 11, David Looney 5, Kolbe McMahon 2, Justin Black 1.
Huntland : Kobe Foster 17, Tyler Smith 16, D.J. Taylor 11, Aaron Williams 6, Hunter Bradley 4, Justin Sells 4, Will Rector 2, Zach Stovall 1.
Three-point field goals: Cornersville (7): Smith 4, Crowell 1, Lowery 1, Looney 1; Huntland (2): Williams 2.
Halftime score: Huntland 31, Cornersville 17.