Hartselle upsets Bearcats, Lady Bearcats

Josh McBrayer

HARTSELLE– It was dreary outside as well as inside the Hartselle High School Gymnasium Thursday night as the Cullman Bearcats and Lady Bearcats fell to their rivals, the Hartselle Tigers.

Cullman started strong in the first quarter, stopping Hartselle on their first three possessions and taking an early lead on a basket by Jayden Sullins. Will Franey dropped in the next five for the 'Cats while Dylan Finch added four and Jacob McAfee and Andrew Morton each drained a three to give Cullman a 16-12 advantage after one.

Finch started the second with a strong basket in the paint for two of only five Bearcat points in the quarter. Turnovers and miscues on offense plagued the 'Cats in the second, leading to easy transition points for Hartselle. The big Hartselle run came in the latter part of the quarter when the Tigers scored 21 unanswered points to double up the Cats, 42-21, heading to the half.

Not knowing the meaning of the word quit, Cullman came out strong in the second half with Finch and Sullins picking up points for the Bearcats, but Hartselle kept pace. The Tigers expanded their lead to as much as 26 in the quarter, but a late 12-0 run led by Trey Tucker cut into the Hartselle lead. The 'Cats were still down by 16 as they headed to the final quarter.

Cullman made it a perfect 4-of-4 in scoring first in the quarter, but Hartselle again matched them point-for-point. Cullman played hard, but just could not overcome the hiccup that was the second quarter, falling to Hartselle by the final of 74-59.


Hartselle 72, Cullman 54 (girls)

Hartselle was on fire from the opening tip to the final whistle Thursday night as the took on Cullman. Mere seconds into the game, sophomore Elizabeth Taylor drained a three to put her at the 1,000 point mark of her career, and Hartselle took it from there. The Lady Tigers hit four deep balls in the quarter to take an early 15-5 lead at the end of the first.

Anna Bowden opened the second with a three for Cullman, but Hartselle answered with a 12-4 run that put Cullman in a 27-9 hole early in the second. The Lady 'Cats bounced back with points from Anna Katherine Eastman and Anna Murphy, but Hartselle kept pace and took a 38-20 lead to the half.

Hartselle picked up right where the left off to open the third. The Lady Tigers doubled up Cullman 20-10 to take a 22-point lead to the fourth where they held on to defeat the Lady Bearcats 72-54.


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