PREP BASKETBALL: No. 8 Cullman takes rematch with Paul W. Bryant 68-35

Cullman’s Jake Dorough (5) led the Bearcats with 16 points in their 68-35 win over Paul W. Bryant Thursday night. (Nick Griffin/The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – The Cullman Bearcats were back home at Bearcat Arena to host a familiar opponent Thursday night but this time around, the results were a little different. After falling to Paul W. Bryant 48-46 earlier this season, the ‘Cats ramped up the pressure on the defensive end in the rematch and raced past the Stampede on their way to a 68-35 win. 11 different Cullman players scored at least two points in the win.

After splitting a pair of free throws, Tucker Cagle scored inside to put the Bearcats in front 3-2 at the start of the game and Jake Dorough turned a steal into an easy basket to make it 5-2. A layup and a three-pointer from Colton Echols gave Cullman a 10-4 lead later in the first and two more buckets by Cagle made it a 14-8 game going into the second.

Back to back scores from Dorough stretched the lead to 18-8 early in the second quarter and the ‘Cats really began to create separation after Arden Crane buried a pair of three-pointers to stretch the lead to 24-8. Technical fouls against Paul W. Bryant allowed Cullman to add to its lead at the free throw line later in the period and the Bearcats went into the locker room at the break leading 32-10.

Cullman continued to smother the Stampede on the defensive end and put up points on the offensive end in the third quarter. A basket from Garrison Sharpe and a three by Dorough put the Bearcats in front 37-12 and after a pair of Sharpe free throws, Nate Zills laid one in to make it a 41-16 game. Sharpe drained another three for Cullman to extend the lead to 44-18 midway through the third. Echols scored inside to keep the run going and Kase Nixon knocked down a three to put the ‘Cats up 49-18. An Evan Wilson basket built the lead up to 33 points late in the period and the Bearcats went into the final frame with a convincing, 53-20 advantage.

With the clock running in the fourth quarter, Tyler Tankersley drained a three-pointer, Landon Tweedie scored inside, and Brodie Bannister laid one in to add to the ‘Cats lead on their way to an impressive, 68-35 win over Paul W. Bryant.

Dorough led the way with 16 points in the win, followed by Echols with 12, Cagle with eight, Sharpe with seven and Wilson and Crane with six.

Cullman will return home next Tuesday night to host an area battle with Decatur.

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