The Corrigan-Camden Bulldogs picked up their second win of the season Tuesday, defeating Onalaska 56-54 on the northern end of Polk County.
The Wildcats had to come back from down double digits to make it a game at the end and had their chances, but Corrigan was strong enough to get the victory in just their third game.
Going 5-for-10 at the free throw line would hurt the ‘Cats later in the contest, as did not taking care of the basketball on several occasions. The Bulldogs had the some of the same problems holding on to the ball.
“Those missed free throws ended up being crucial and there were just simple turnovers for no reason,” Onalaska coach Nick Tyerman said. “They weren't really pressuring us to where we needed to turn it over, we just needed to make better decisions. That is stuff that we will work on in practice tomorrow. You don't want to be a team that is peaking in November; you want to be a team that is peaking in February. I'm proud that we battled back when we could have laid down.”
The ‘Dogs hit five 3-pointers in the second quarter, on their way to 17 points over that span. They went to halftime with a slim 27-26 advantage, but the game was tied going into the fourth quarter.
“We are OK,” Corrigan-Camden coach Andrew Kirkindoff said. “I think we're still growing and they're still getting out of that football mode and getting into basketball shape. I told them that we just have to continue to get better day by day. We're trying to have some success in the playoffs. I was kind of disappointed in the turnovers at the end, because we have to be better if we are to be successful. But, a win is a win, and I am happy with that.”
Kirkindoff said there has been an emphasis placed on ball control and slowing the pace. The coach believes his squad having the same system and creating some consistency has helped them get off to a good start.
After dropping a game to Tarkington early, they have recovered to defeat Groveton and get the win Tuesday.
For Onalaska, Bryan Wyatt led the team with 19 points and was followed by another sophomore in John Byrd, who had 15 points with four makes from long range. Corrigan-Camden’s Tra Thomas was the high scorer with 22 points, Tony Cooper had 12, Javarion Williams added nine points, Anthony Harrell had seven and Morgan Rayborn had six.
The Big Sandy tournament is up next for the Onalaska girls and boys Thursday, where a competitive group will provide a challenge. Corrigan will head to West Sabine and take on Newton in the first round of those brackets.