It wasn’t always the prettiest, but the Creek Wood basketball teams escaped Centerville with a sweep over the host Hickman County Bulldogs and Lady Dawgs in district play on Tuesday night. The Red Hawk boys had the toughest test, in a tightly-officiated defensive battle that suited the bruising style of the home team more than the finesse of the sharp shooters from Highway 47.
Head Coach Charles Taylor went with a different starting lineup for the first district tilt of 2017, bringing Aaron Daniel and Garrett Dolinich off the bench and starting gifted sixth man Allen Miller and football player turned big-bodied three point dynamo Devon Higgins. The two sides were mired in the muck early, but Coulter Dotson led the way with 6 points in the first while Higgins drained a three as did Dallas Hall, and Creek Wood led 14-7 at the end of the first. A back-and-forth first led to a back-and-forth second that was ultimately a 10-10 wash. Quintin Capintog had 5 points in the first for the Bulldogs and was blanked in the second quarter–but 5 other players scored in the frame to pick up his slack. Dotson and Higgins had big threes for the Red Hawks who held serve, and Creek Wood led 24-17 at the break.
Hickman County came out of the locker room fired up, and the barely-contained energy made the basketball game resemble a rugby match even more in the second half–turnovers, physicality, defense, missed shots, and scrums for loose balls. The Bulldogs capitalized on the frenzy in the third as Capintog drained 2 threes in an 8 point quarter while 4 other players had a basket each, and a 16-10 frame very nearly saw the home team with the lead entering the fourth. As it was, it took a 5 point outing from Higgings including his third three of the game, plus 3 points from Dotson and 2 from Micah Westerman, to flip the lead back in the Red Hawks’ favor 34-33 heading into the last stanza.
Creek Wood never seemed fully able to put the game away, as Hickman County kept making runs all game long. As it was, the Red Hawks were able to squeak out a few leads in the final 8 minutes, but still had to hang on tight to secure the win. The visitors had to effectively sit on the ball up by 4 points inside 2 minutes to go, but the Bulldogs took the ball away and scored to cut the lead to 2. In the waning stages of the game, Hickman County tested Higgins by sending him to the line, and he hit 1-of-2 to increase the Red Hawk lead to 3 points. Trent Turner had heated up in the fourth with his only two made threes in the contest, but neither he nor Capintog had the dagger to answer back with. Just before time expired, the tying three missed, and Hickman County initially tried for a tip-in before realizing that would cement a loss as they trailed by three. Shortly after that the ball was sent out to the point and was ripped away by a Red Hawk and no foul was called as time expired. Creek Wood survived 48-45 in a meat-grinder game on the road, and locked up a very important district win.
Dotson had a game-high 17 points and 2 threes, while Higgins had 12 points and 3 threes. Westerman finished with 7 points and a three, while Dolonich had 5 points including a three; Dotson and Westerman each had 5 points including a three in the 14-12 CWHS fourth, while Dolinich hit his only three in the final frame. Capintog led the way for Hickman County with 15 points and 3 threes, while Turner had 8 points and 2 threes.
The girls’ game was the polar opposite of the boys’ contest, however. Hickman County was looking for its second win of the year, and took a 2-0 lead to open the scoring. Creek Wood answered back with a longball to make it 3-2, but the Lady Dawgs took the lead back 4-3.
The Lady Red Hawks ripped the lead back soon after, and with the lead went the swagger of Hickman County. Creek Wood closed the first quarter on a 16-0 run for a 19-4 lead as 6 players scored and 4 of them hit a three, and the visitors never looked back. Zia Turntine and Catie Cannon each hit a three for Hickman County in the second, but CWHS would win the quarter 14-8 for a 33-12 halftime lead. Lydia Edmondson had 3 points in the first and 6 in the second, while Taylor Moore hit a three in the first and 2 more in the second, and the rout was on.
The Lady Red Hawks hammered Hickman County 23-0 in the third, and hammered the hosts 27-1 in the second half for a mercy-rule 60-13 win. The Lady Dawgs’ only second-half points came when Cannon was fouled shooting a three in the fourth and hit her last foul shot.
Moore and Raegan Hohl each finished with a game-high 12 points for Creek Wood; Hohl had 2 threes, while Moore finished with 4. Edmondson and Julie Nunnemaker had 9 points each, while Elayna Gass hit 2 threes for 6 points; CWHS hit 11 threes as a team. Cannon finished with 4 points on the night for Hickman County, while Turntine was second in scoring with 3.
Creek Wood travels to East Hickman on Friday night on WDKN 1260 AM, before finishing the week Saturday night at home against Sycamore on WDKN and 101.5 The One FM.