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February 17, 2018

2/11/2018 10:07:00 AM
Big Second Half Pushes Bath County Past Mustangs, 66-50
CHARGER BUCKET — Bath County’s Sean Gardener (43) scores as Eastern Montgomery’s Cole Shepherd defends Thursday night. (Gavin Dressler Photo)
CHARGER BUCKET — Bath County’s Sean Gardener (43) scores as Eastern Montgomery’s Cole Shepherd defends Thursday night. (Gavin Dressler Photo)

News Editor
HOT SPRINGS — What a difference a half makes!

The Bath County Chargers turned a six-point halftime deficit into a 10-point third-quarter lead Thursday night, as they kept Eastern Montgomery winless on the season, 66-50.

The win concluded successful Senior Night festivities for the Chargers, who saluted upperclassmen Chaz Ryder, Christian Jessee, Hunter Brown and Bubba Maddow in a pregame ceremony.

“It’s always great to win on Senior Night,” Bath County coach Terry Bradley said. “We started some seniors who don’t get a lot of chances to play, and that’s always fun.”

The visiting Mustangs got off to a fast start. On the strength of Will Rakes, Jacob Price and Garrett East 3-pointers, they led 9-2, and the Chargers were faced with an uphill battle the rest of the half.

They cut their deficit to 21-19 early in the second on a Damien Flenner basket, but the Mustangs extended the lead to 32-25 at the half.

Eastern Montgomery led 34-28 early in the third quarter, but a Bath County blitz erased that deficit — and then some.

Flenner started a 15-0 Bath County run with a bucket, and a Dylan McComb basket cut the Eastern Montgomery lead to two. Flenner’s steal and layup tied it at 34-all, and a Trey Shaver 3-pointer from the left wing gave the Chargers the lead.

A Patrick Chestnut basket and four Hunter Brown points ended the run and gave the Chargers a 43-34 lead.

A Flenner basket in the lane capped a productive third quarter for the Chargers and gave them a 47-37 lead.

The Bath County lead mushroomed to as many as 18 in the final quarter.

“I was really proud of our second half defensive effort — that’s what really set the tone,” Bradley said. “You could tell we hadn’t played or practiced in a week, but in the second half, I thought we really picked up our defensive intensity.”

Flenner led the way for the Chargers with 22 points, while Sean Gardener added 13.

Both were 9-of-14 from the charity stripe, as the Chargers shot 40 free throws on the evening.

McComb carded a double-double with 10 points and 13 rebounds, while Brown just missed double figures with nine points, all coming in the second half.

East led Eastern Montgomery with 16 points, while Rakes added 11.

The teams were whistled for a total of 50 fouls, and they combined to shoot 74 free throws on the night.

“This is good momentum for a really challenging next three games,” Bradley said. “It was a nice win. I hope we can take that momentum with us.”

In Thursday’s opener, Tyler Dillow and Kemar Archer hit clutch free throws down the stretch to lift the Chargers over Eastern Montgomery, 37-32.

Dillow and Archer combined to hit 5-of-8 from the charity stripe in the fourth quarter, as the Charger jayvees won for the third time on the season.

Logan Miller led the Chargers with 10 points, while Dillow added eight and Wyatt Harmon scored seven.

Russell Ingram and Archer scored four apiece, while Matt Keyser and Eli Phillips rounded out the Bath County scoring with two each.

Hunter Holland had 13 and J.T. Foster scored 11 for the Mustangs, who enjoyed an 18-16 lead at intermission.

Friday’s Game
Narrows took control in the second half to post a 75-43 win over the Chargers in a Friday night game.

The Green Wave led 30-22 at the half and outscored Bath County 45-21 after the break.

Brady Patterson scored 18 for Narrows.

Chestnut led Bath County with 12 and Gardener had nine.

The Chargers (3-6 Pioneer, 5-12 overall) finish the regular season tonight at home against Parry McCluer. They open Pioneer District tournament play on Monday against Craig County with the site to be determined after today’s games.

Narrows won Friday’s JV game, 73-33.

Dillow had 11 for the Chargers, Tye Hooker and Gian Conners both had five, Ingram scored four, Archer had three, Miller and Phillips both had two and Brennan Gardzinzki added one.

Bryce Richardson and Dawson Snidow both had 14 for Narrows.

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