Mt. Pleasant adds to Bulldog woes

Wednesday, December 23, 2015
JD Crabtree launches a shot versus Mt. Pleasant Friday night. Photos by George "Pap" Warren

The Cornersville Bulldogs (0-6, 0-4) limped into Friday night's game against Mount Pleasant with a winless record and the last two defeats by 35 and 46 points respectively. The surging Tigers (4-1, 4-0), with just one loss by two points to open the year at Summertown, would provide no shelter to the Bulldogs by dismantling the home team by 50 points to keep Cornersville without a win early in the year.

Still young

"They're more athletic," Cornersville coach Jeff Morton said. "We're young. We're having 2-3 freshmen on the floor every time we take the court. We'll come around."

The Bulldogs were led by Austin Ridinger, who scored 10 points and grabbed five rebounds and Cam Whitaker who scored six points, handed out two assists and grabbed two rebounds.

"We could have played more as a team and played harder," Ridinger said. "We need to work harder on our defense and work harder in practice."

Austin Ridinger had 10 points to lead the Bulldogs in the scoring column.

Ridinger hit a layup and Whitaker nailed a 3-pointer in the opening frame to keep the Mt. Pleasant lead manageable at 8-5. The Tigers scored five unanswered, but Whitaker hit his second three of the opening quarter to cut the lead back down to five at 13-8.

Stunning

Tee Rogers started the break on a steal for the Tigers and threw a picturesque alley-oop to Walter Crawford, who dunked it home for the 17-8 lead.

The show of raw athleticism seemed to stun the Bulldogs and a Trevon Bailey steal and pass to Crawford shut the book on any Bulldog thought of a comeback, trailing 37-13 at the half.

Crawford started the third quarter where he left off the first half, nailing a three, throwing down a fast break dunk and nailing another 3-pointer to increase the Tigers' lead to 40-13 just minutes into the period.

The benches started to cycle in and the clock kept running on dead balls under the 35-point mercy rule and the Tigers would walk away with the easy 81-31 win.

Looking back

"We should have boxed-out and rebounded better," Whitaker said. "We started out in a 1-3-1 (defense) and maybe we should have started out in a 2-3 (defense)."

The lone bright spot for the Bulldogs was the extensive bench play as Alexander Stewart scored five points and grabbed three rebounds and Devin Bauw chipped in four points for the young Cornersville team.

"Definitely that's going to help us in the future," Morton added. "It's going to help us next year but it's also going to help us at the end of this year too."

The Bulldogs have now lost three big games after playing close contests against Hampshire and Forrest earlier in the year.

"At the beginning of the year I felt like we were more into it," senior Cody Caneer said. "It was the start of a new season, it was fresh. We wanted to beat everyone and we wanted to play. Now, it's kind of dying off, we've been beat six times now. People are saying we aren't good, we aren't this, I feel like it's probably dying off a little bit."

The Bulldogs looked to get back on track against a Zion Christian team that is riding a two game losing streak on Tuesday.

Cornersville 8 5 9 9 31

Mt. Pleasant 17 20 33 11 81

Cornersville (31): Cam Whitaker 6, Alexander Stewart 5, Austin Ridinger 10, Cody Caneer 2, John D. Crabtree 2, Devin Bauw 4, Brock Powers 2.

Mt. Pleasant (81): Trevon Bailey 2, Jakeel Miller 6, Will Davis 2, Walter Crawford 24, Zyshon Riley 14, Molandy McClure 5, Cason Russell 8, John Spears 9, Jerrell Frierson 2, Tee Rogers 9.

Three-point goals- Cornersville (2): Whitaker 2. Mt. Pleasant (8): McClure 1, Crawford 2, Russell 2, Spears 3.