Bulldogs escape with double OT win

Wednesday, December 7, 2016
Trey Luna walks the ball up court during the Bulldogs 37-36 double OT win versus Minor Hill Tuesday night at Cornersville. Tribune photos by Mike Inglsbee

After starting the season 2-8, the Cornersville Bulldogs have been on a tear the past few games and came into the game on Monday versus Minor Hill with a chance to win its fourth game in a row over the Giles County squad.

The Bulldogs looked dominant early on, allowing the Wildcats just seven points in the second half, but Cornersville scored just two points in the second quarter to leave the door open for a second half comeback.

The Wildcats made the comeback, taking a lead into the fourth quarter before the Bulldogs surged back to force two overtimes and finally escape with a 37-36 win.

"They play with a lot of heart," CMS coach Bryant Porter said. "They're learning how to win. They're learning how to play together as a team and are learning how to win and that's what it takes is learning how to play as a team and never giving up. And they did it tonight. They played well and I was proud of them."

The Bulldogs were led by Conner McVey with 10 points to go along with six rebounds, Eli Welch chipped in six points, five rebounds, and three blocks and Brady Calahan led both squads with 10 rebounds.

The streaking Bulldogs looked ready to take their fourth consecutive win easily as McVey took a rebound coast-to-coast for the layup and Bryce Woodard nailed a triple from the corner with 1:02 left in the first quarter for a 9-3 lead into the second period.

The Bulldogs held an 11-4 lead with under a minute remaining, but a Tucker Doane 3-pointer with 38 seconds left in the half cut the lead to 11-7.

"We took some of our starters out basically just because I wanted them to be rested," Porter said. "I knew we weren't scoring, so we were gonna have to play a lot of defense to the end."

The Wildcats came storming back to take its first lead of the game at 18-16 on back-to-back 3-pointers by Walker Belew and Doane with 34 seconds left in the third period.

The Bobcats took their biggest lead of the night on an Austin Nave three with 5:01 remaining before Trey Luna stopped the bleeding with a triple at the 3:45 mark.

Eli Welch came up with his biggest rebound of the night on a put back to give the lead back to the Bulldogs with 2:26 remaining, but Nave retied the game at 29 with 1-of-2 free throws.

The Bulldogs held for the last shot, but Austin Hines stole the ball with four seconds remaining and missed the layup at the buzzer to force overtime.

Conner McVey calmly steps to the line to knock down the second of his game-tying free throws during the end of the first overtime.

Doane hit a layup in the second overtime to give the Wildcats the two-point lead but McVey nailed two huge free throws with 14 seconds left in the game to force a second overtime.

Christian Wilson was the catalyst for the Bulldogs in the final overtime by stealing the ball and feeding McVey for the bucket and stealing an errant pass on the next possession and taking the ball to the hole for a layup to cap the one-point win.

Cornersville 9 2 5 13 4 4-37

Minor Hill 3 4 11 11 4 3-36

Cornersville-Conner McVey 10, Trey Luna 8, Eli Welch 6, Garrett Alder 6, Christian Wilson 4, Bryce Woodard 3

Three-point goals-Trey Luna 2, Bryce Woodard

Minor Hill-Tucker Doane 13, Walker Belew 11, Austin Nave 7, Austin Hines 3, Kobe Barnette 2

Three-point goals-Belew 3, Doane 1

Halftime score-Cornersville 11, Minor Hill 7

Next game-Thursday, December 8 at Richland, 6 p.m.