Bulldogs prevail over Elkton

Friday, December 23, 2016
Cornersville post Finn Gentry, who led the Bulldogs with 11 points, hits an acrobatic reverse lay-up to give the Bulldogs the lead during the fourth quarter. Photos by Caylee Porter

After winning just two of its first eight games, the Cornersville Bulldogs had a chance to win four out of its last eight with a win over visiting Elkton Thursday night

The Bulldogs overcame a tough second quarter and came back from six points down in the third quarter to pick up a hard fought 34-22 win by allowing just five points the entire second half from the Elks.

The Bulldogs were led by Finn Gentry with 11 points, five rebounds, and two blocks. Brady Calahan chipped in nine points, five rebounds, and two steals and Conner McVey added five points and five rebounds.

Garrett Alder and Cooper Wright led the Bulldogs with six rebounds each and Trey Luna led the squad with three assists.

The Bulldogs started out fast with an early 6-0 lead, but Ashton Garner scored four points with two minutes left in the quarter to close the gap.

Luna drew a foul on a 3-point attempt with 36 seconds remaining in the quarter and the point guard knocked down all three foul shots for a 9-4 lead after one period.

The Elks mounted a comeback in the second frame with two offensive rebounds and layups in a row before Garner hit a fade away jumper to give Elkton its first lead of the night at 2:52 left in the half.

Gardner and J.D. Lunar each scored a bucket to give the Elks its biggest lead of the game at 17-11 going into halftime.

"We started slow and we weren't really moving," first-year CMS coach Bryant Porter said. "We weren't moving the ball fast and we weren't moving at all. At halftime we really emphasized moving the ball around and getting that shot down low and you saw it happen quite often at that point."

Calahan scored off an inbounds play and garnered a steal and a layup to tie the game at 19-19 with 3:30 in the third quarter before Gentry scored a layup to give the Bulldogs back the lead at 21-19.

Trey Luna, who had a team-high three assists versus Elkton, sends a one-handed pass to the other end of the court to start a Bulldog scoring play.

The Bulldogs outscored the Elks 12-2 in the third quarter to put the home team in prime position to run away with the contest, heading into the final period.

"When we went into our 1-3-1 zone they didn't have an answer for that," Bryant added. "That was the big difference in the game I felt like. We did a good job, they didn't have the ball handlers and then they got into foul trouble."

The Bulldogs headed into the fourth clinging to a four-point edge, but Gentry scored six points in a row before Calahan knocked down a 3-pointer to stick a dragger in the Elks comeback plans and Cornersville went on to win 34-22 despite being down by six points at halftime.

"We finished the season a lot better than we started," Bryant said. "We started 2-6 and we finished 4-4. So I think that's a success for my first year and if we can turn that around and build on that we'll have a good year next season."

"My guys played better throughout the year," Bryant continued. "And at the end if I can do that every year than I'll be happy. I'm happy the way they finished."

Cornersville 9 2 12 11 34

Elkton 4 13 2 3 22

Cornersville (34): Finn Gentry 11, Brady Calahan 9, Conner McVey 5, Trey Luna 3, Christian Wilson 2, Garrett Alder 2, Rhett Woodard 2

3-point goals (1): Calahan

Elkton (22): Ashton Gardner 12, J.D. Lunar 4, Jayson Rose 4, Kolton Hood 2

Halftime score: Elkton 17 Cornersville 11.