PREP BASKETBALL: Cullman drops area openers against Hartselle; Friday night scoring wrap-up

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Reagan Quattlebaum (12) knocks down a three in Cullman's 65-56 loss to Hartselle Friday night. (Martha Needham for the Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN – The Bearcats hosted the Hartselle Tiger to open up area play Friday night and both varsity squads came up short on their home floor. The Lady Tigers pulled away late to knock off the Lady Bearcats 65-56 and the Bearcats were defeated by the Tigers 76-64.

Hartselle 65 – (17-6) Cullman 56 (varsity girls)

The momentum changed hands several times in this one as the Lady Bearcats took an early 15-8 lead after going on a 9-0 run midway through the first quarter and led things 18-14 after one quarter. The Lady Tigers knocked down a three midway through the second to take a 24-21 lead, but AK Eastman tied the game back up with a three-pointer on Cullman’s next possession. Both teams went to the locker room tied at 30 at halftime.

Hartselle jumped out to a lead early in the third quarter but Eastman’s fifth made three of the night cut the lead back down to 38-37 late in the third quarter. The Lady Tigers hit a three in the final seconds of the third quarter to take a 49-41 lead into the final frame.

A three-pointer from Reagan Quattlebaum cut the Hartselle lead to 55-52 midway through the fourth quarter and a free throw from Sadie Young made it a 57-55 with less than three minutes to play but the Lady Bearcats couldn’t get closer than that. Hartselle pulled away to win it 65-56 and hand Cullman its first area loss of the season.

Eastman led the way for Cullman with 21 points in the loss, followed by Young and Quattlebaum who each finished with nine. The Lady Bearcats will look to bounce back with a win on Tuesday when they travel to play Decatur in another area matchup.

Hartselle 76 – (15-7) Cullman 64 (varsity boys)

This game was tight most of the way as both teams started out by trading leads in the opening quarter until three-pointers from JD Parrish and Noah Bussman, along with a spinning layup from Jayden Sullins as the quarter expired, gave the Bearcats a 17-13 going into the second period.

The Tigers started the second quarter with a 9-0 run to retake the lead and they maintained it for most of the period. A three from Sullins in the final seconds of the quarter cut the Hartselle lead to 39-35 at the half. The Bearcats retook the lead midway through the third quarter on a layup from JT White, but the lead continued to change hands multiple times until third ended with both teams tied at 53.

Unfortunately for the Bearcats, the fourth quarter was more one-sided than the first three. The Tigers were able to do a lot of damage from the free throw line and keep Cullman in check on the defensive end. Hartselle pulled away to win it 76-64 and the Bearcats fell to 0-1 in area play.

Sullins led Cullman with 18 points in the loss, followed by JT White with 10, JD Parrish with nine and Cooper Beck with eight. The Bearcats will try to put this one behind them and prepare for a road game against Decatur Tuesday night.

Other Friday night scores:

Cold Springs 67 – West End 22 (varsity girls)

Cold Springs 56 – West End 30 (varsity boys)

Oneonta 54 – Good Hope 20 (varsity girls)

Oneonta 69 – Good Hope 45 (varsity boys)

Vinemont 39 – New Hope 37 (OT) (varsity girls)

Hanceville 71 – Susan Moore 53 (varsity boys)

Susan Moore 68 – Hanceville 52 (varsity girls)

Asheville 59 – Fairview 57 (varsity boys)

Fairview 64 – Asheville 38 (varsity girls)

Hamilton 70 – West Point 63 (varsity boys)

West Point 82 – Hamilton 42 (varsity girls)

Decatur Heritage 49 – St. Bernard 19 (varsity girls)

Decatur Heritage 61 – St. Bernard 23 (varsity boys)

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