On a Saturday afternoon the Cornersville Lady Bulldogs (5-5, 0-5) welcomed the Huntland Lady Hornets for the tip-off of District 9-A play on the campus of Cornersville High School.
The winter storm of Thursday and Friday had forced the game to be re-scheduled for Saturday afternoon but another storm, this time in the form of Lady Hornets, awaited the Lady Bulldogs as Huntland used a stifling defense from a veteran team to roll pass Cornersville 53-31.
The Lady Bulldogs were guilty of numerous turnovers as Huntland used a three-fourths court trapping press to suffocate the young Lady Bulldogs that in the process stopped Cornersville’s five-game win streak.
Grayson Riner led the Lady Bulldogs in scoring with nine points and freshman Ady Gentry added seven points.
Bailey Morris points led the Lady Hornets with 21 points.
“We had way too many turnovers and against a really good team like Huntland, that’s not good. They out rebounded us, so we’ll have to work on that,” Coach Hayden McMahon said,
The opening tip-off after bouncing around among both Huntland and Cornersville players ended up in the hands of Lady Bulldog point guard Jayli Childress but the first Cornersville possession ended in what was a harbinger of things to come – turnover.
Huntland’s Ashtyn Danley on a put-back put the Lady Hornets on the board first, 2-0.
Cornersville’s Riner promptly added a basket but the Lady Hornets with their trapping defense and quick hands went on a 12-point run before Alicia Polk for Cornersville, with a put-back off an offensive rebound, scored as the waning seconds of the first quarter ticked away leaving the Lady Bulldogs, trailing by ten points, 14-4.
The second quarter was more of the same for Cornersville as the Lady Hornets stung the Lady Bulldogs with steals and quick hands, but as has been shown in past games, these charges of McMahon soldiered on, with Ady Gentry fighting and driving the lane for two baskets.
Anna Wood scored on a put-back and Jayli Childress added a free-throw, but Huntland had increased their lead to 16 points at the halftime horn, 27-11.
The third quarter saw the teams play on virtually even terms as 3-point baskets by Childress, Riner and Hanna Moore kept the Lady Bulldogs within arms reach of the Lady Hornets but Huntland increased its lead by one point to 17 points at the end of the third quarter, 41-24.
The double-digit lead was simply too much for Cornersville to overcome with eight minutes left in the game but the Lady Bulldogs fought on with Gentry showing the promise of things to come.
“They (Huntland) are the best team we have played but I like the fact we never give up and we’ll be better prepared when we play them again,” McMahon said.
Huntland 14 13 14 12 — 53
Cornersville 4 7 13 7 — 31
Huntland (79): Bailey Morris 21, Ashlyn Danley 9, Jocy May 8, Morgan Sanders 8, Kami Riley 3, Logan McLennon 3, Megan Tipps 1.
3-Point Goals (6): Morris 3, Sanders 2, McLennon.
Free Throws (9-19): Morris 2-for-2, Riley 3-for-8, May 2-for-2, Tipps 1-for-2, Danley 1-for-2, Kilpatrick 0-for-2, Sanders 0-for-1.
Cornersville (31): Grayson Riner 9, Ady Gentry 7, Jayli Childress 4, Anna Wood 4, Hanna Moore 3, Alicia Polk 2, Annabelle Mulliniks 2.
3-Point Goals (4): Polk2, Walker 2.
Free Throws (6-12): Anna Wood 2-for-2, Mulliniks 2-for-2, Gentry 1-for-4, Childress 1-for-2, Moore 0-for-2.
Halftime Score: Huntland 27, Cornersville 11.