December 8, 2011

Bulldogs Bounce SCR-I Out of Title Hunt in Novinger Tourney Semifinals

Andrew Mathes powers through the La Plata defender for two points.

Heading into Wednesday night's semifinals match up versus La Plata, Scotland County already knew points were going to be hard to come by. With leading scorer Derrick Muntz on the bench in street clothes, nursing a knee injury, it proved to be an inopportune time for an off shooting night for the Tigers. But that was the case for the #1 seed, which suffered through a poor night from the perimeter.

The Bulldogs on the other hand road streaky three-point shooting from Taylor Herron and Weston Smith to blow the game open in the third quarter and upset the Tigers 62-42. On the night, La Plata connected on 10 three pointers, a far cry from the team's 32-25 shooting performance from behind the arc in the tournament opener.

Scotland County made four three pointers on the night, but the Tigers struggled through a cold shooting performance for the final three quarters of the contest.

Andrew Mathes opened the scoring for SCR-I with a conventional three-point play. After Brock Bondurant sank a pair of free throws, Harley Stone drained a three pointer from the corner to put Scotland County ahead 8-6. Brice Cowell added a field goal but La Plata pulled ahead 11-10 at the end of the first period.

Cowell sank a three pointer to open the second period, as the sophomore picked up some of the scoring slack in the absence of Muntz. That proved to be the final lead of the night for SCR-I.

Bondurant scored nine of SCR-I's 11 points down the stretch in the first half to keep his team close. He knocked down a three pointer and got the crowd back into the contest with an acrobatic score on an offensive rebound that saw him snatch the ball off the glass and put it back in on the other side of the rim, all in one leap.

La Plata still managed to lead 30-26 at the break.

That margin grew in the third period, as La Plata opened the second half with a 7-0 run. Drew Miller finally broke the streak with a three pointer. The triple did little to slow the La Plata rush, as the Bulldogs outscored SCR-I 15-6 in the final minutes of the quarter to pull ahead 52-35.

Cowell converted a three point play and Stone added four points in the final period but SCR-I was never able to truly mount a rally.

Herron finished with 23 points for the Bulldogs (2-0) to lead all scorers. Smith added 13 points and Payton Swift finished with 11.

Bondurant was the lone Tiger in double digits with 13 points. Cowell finished with eight points and Mathes, Miller and Stone each pitched in with seven points.

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