By HEATHER BOATMAN, CJ Correspondent Commonwealth Journal
Southwestern defeated Clark County in the second round of the Lake Cumberland Holiday Hoops Classic Saturday night, 61-54. The Warriors held the lead the whole game allowing the Cardinals to come within two points in the fourth.
“We played a team that is strong, quick, and athletic tonight,” began Southwestern’s head coach Steve Wright. “Last night (Friday) we kind of had everything our way but tonight we had to work harder for everything.”
Justin Edwards helped led the Warriors to victory with 33 points scoring 13 of those in the fourth quarter.
In the first quarter Southwestern got the lead early with an offensive rebound and put back from Dylan Gaskins. The next trip Southwestern was able to score again, the warriors had a six-point lead before the Cardinals were up on the scoreboard. Danny Butt scored seven for the Warriors in the quarter. Damion King hit a three for Clark County’s first basket.
The Cardinals hit three of their seven threes for the game in the opening period. Edwards had 10 in the first. The Warriors led 18-13 after the first period of play.
In the second quarter Southwestern’s Hunter Cromer came in off the bench to provide solid help for the Warriors scoring six points in the quarter to help them keep the lead. Cromer scored six of the teams 11 points in the second half.
The Cardinals kept the score close but could not take the lead. Josiah Israel scored the bulk of Clark’s points in the second half, as a team they put up 10. Allowing the Warrior to extend their lead, 29-23.
“We didn’t play exceptionally well tonight, we made some poor decisions,” stated Wright. “We got out of sync on offence and got sloppy on defense but we were able to get a 10 point lead with two minutes left.”
In the third quarter Edwards hit a three early but King was able to get that back in no time. Riley Caudill knocked down two threes in the quarter for the Cardinals but that wasn’t enough to slow down the Warriors. Robbie Miller knocked down a three showing off his range in the period. Southwestern led 48-42 unable to extend their lead.
In the final quarter, the Cardinals hit two jump shots early to cut the lead within two. Edwards was the only Warrior to score in the fourth scoring 13 in the period. The Warriors went on a small but slow run as they tried to slow the game down and run time off the clock. With two minutes left, Southwestern held a 10-point lead the biggest of the night.
Braxton Greene hit two jump shots to help chip at the lead. The Warriors were able to finish Clark County 61-54 a seven-point difference.
“Their defense was pretty good, they got us moving about a step before we wanted too,” said Wright. “We played hard but we didn’t shoot the ball well and we made a lot of mistakes, our younger kids are still trying to learn to play with in our system.”
The Warriors advanced to the third round of the Lake Cumberland Holiday Hoops Classic to take on 12th region opponent the West Jessamine Colts. Clark County went on to play the Doss dragons.