Lady Bulldogs hold back Zion
The Cornersville Lady Bulldogs looked to work out some kinks against non-district foe Zion Christian, a team it had trounced by 31 just three games prior, before hitting the meat of its district schedule to finish out the season.
If Cornersville, losers of two of its last three games, thought the Eagles would be intimidated by the lopsided score of the last meeting between the teams, they found out quick they would be in a dogfight until the end when the Lady Bulldogs needed a 20-10 fourth quarter to put away the upstart Lady Eagles 57-40.
"I didn't like our energy tonight," coach Peyton Newton said. "I expected us to play with a little more energy tonight. Offensively we didn't have a whole lot going on, we didn't rebound the ball well and had too many turnovers. We did have a different game plan but we didn't play as upbeat as we usually do."
Morgan Terry once again dominated the middle, scoring 13 of her game-high 21 points in the third quarter to go along with seven rebounds and six blocked shots.
Cornersville turned to its bench for a little more production than usual with Samantha Prosser scoring five points and blocking two shots blocks, while sister Sarah Beth Prosser added three points and five rebounds.
Brooke Defoe turned in another great game off the bench with four points, three rebounds, an assist, and a steal.
"I feel like I've had a lot more confidence in playing when I get in and actually getting to contribute," junior guard Defoe said. "I think we've been working really well together, passing the ball around and actually getting the ball down to our post players."
Kinley Finkle scored four of Zion's eight first quarter points to keep the game close early, but a Carson Coble steal and dish to Sarah Beth Prosser and Prosser's free throw on a subsequent possession put the lady Dawgs up 9-8 at the end of the first quarter.
Six different Bulldogs scored in the second quarter, led by three Emma Mitchell points and a Sam Prosser steal and lay-up that pushed the Cornersville lead to 19-13 lead with 2:41 left in the period.
Zion countered with a Kaylyn Wilson layup to stay within striking distance at 21-15, going into halftime.
Defoe nailed a jumper to put the Bulldogs up 25-19 with two minutes left in the third quarter, but Anna Grace Fox hit a runner in the lane with two seconds left as the pesky Eagles refused to go away heading into the final stanza.
Morgan Terry caught fire in the fourth quarter, single handily outscoring the Zion 13-10 and Hope Taylor kept the Lady Eagles at bay on the glass by grabbing four fourth quarter rebounds as the Bulldogs finally pulled away from the Eagles 45-32.
"I think we worked together really well toward the end tonight," said Taylor, who led the Bulldogs with eight rebounds off the bench. "We communicated and helped each other out. We were able to bring more people in and have a lot of fresh legs off the bench."
The Bulldogs were held without a 3-point basket on the night and committed an eye opening 29 turnovers, but were able to count on some unfamiliar faces to help lead the team to a victory against the Eagles.
"We always preach to our player's to take advantage of your opportunities," coach Newton said. "Brooke's someone who works hard in practice, so does Hope. We're still trying to get Brooke's offensive game where it needs to be but she gets loose balls and she rebounds well. Every time she gets in the game she takes advantage of it."
"Hope is another one who works her tail off," Newton continued. "We're still trying to get her some post moves and get her more comfortable down on the block. She plays hard and she does what we ask her to. So that's where their playing time comes in and we're going to need it the rest of the year."
Emma Mitchell scored four points, grabbed six rebounds, had two steals and two assists and Taylor Powers had just one point, but grabbed three boards, had three steals, and two assists.
Cornersville 9 12 4 20-45
Zion Christian 8 7 7 10-32
Cornersville (45): Madison Hopkins 5, Taylor Powers 1, Carson Coble 2, Emma Mitchell 4, Morgan Terry 21, Samantha Prosser 5, Sarah Beth Prosser 3, Brooke Defoe 4.
Zion Christian (33): Anna Grace Fox 9, Molly McKelvy 7, Kalyn Wilson 6, Kinley Finke 5, Bethany Hampton 5.
Three-point goals: Zion Christian (2)- Hampton, Finke.