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Commanders continue slide

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Two district losses put WC in the cellar

By The Staff

By Jimmie Earls

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Sun Sports Writer

Washington County head boys basketball coach Paul Bodenhamer wasn’t one to mince words following a disappointing 63-50 loss to Bethlehem Friday night to fall to 2-10 on the season and 0-3 in district play.

“I’m pretty disappointed in this basketball team right now,” said Bodenhamer after the game. “We came in with the proper game plan, we had a great day of practice yesterday, we knew what we needed to do to be effective, and we did that in the first quarter. We were all over them. In the second quarter, we got away from it and we let them back in the game and we couldn’t regain our composure.”

Washington County was firing on all cylinders in the first quarter as they outscored the Eagles 17-14. But early in the second quarter, Washington County’s offensive engine threw a rod and only managed to score four points in the period to Bethlehem’s 12 to give the Eagles a 26-21 lead at the break.

The Commanders did better in the third quarter as they didn’t let the game get away from them. Bethlehem edged WC in third quarter scoring, 19-18.

Washington County seemed to run out of gas in the fourth as the Eagles pulled away, outscoring the Commanders 18-11 and claiming a 63-50 victory.

The Commanders knew this was an important game, so much so that senior John Hamilton, who was expected to be out four to six weeks with bone contusions in his left knee, returned to the floor in an effort to boost WC’s offense.

“In the first half, he looked a little timid,” added Bodenhamer. “I asked him how he felt and he said he felt fine. I told him to go out there and be aggressive like he was before he had the injury.”

Bethlehem’s Braden Hurst was a force unto himself as his hit eight of 14 from the floor, including four of five three-point shots and going two-for-three at the free-throw line. In total, he had 22 points on the night with seven rebounds.

Will Samuels put together a double-double for Bethlehem, scoring 10 points with 10 rebounds, while Dalton Reed had 12 points and six rebounds.

Lee Mudd led the Commanders with 20 points, knocking down eight of 18 from the floor, which included three out of 11 three-point attempts and one-for-one at the charity stripe.

Despite a bad left knee, John Hamilton had eight points on the evening, while junior Alex Simms also had eight points.

WCHS       17   4 18 11 50

Bethlehem 14 12 19 18 63

Washington County (50) – Mudd 20, Abell 1, A. Simms 8, J. Simms 6, Hamilton 8, Purdom 5, Hale 2

Three-point shots: Mudd 3, J. Simms 2, Purdom 1

Bethlehem (63) – Hurst 22, Medley 8, Reed 12, Allgeier 1, Samuels 10, Mudd 5, Spalding 5

Three-point shots: Hurst 4, Reed 1, Mudd 1

Earlier in the week, WC hosted Bardstown last Tuesday night for another district contest that saw the Commanders lose 76-53.

Bardstown built an early 18-8 lead in the first quarter and really turned it on in the second quarter, outscoring WC 22-9 to take a 40-17 lead into the half.

The Commanders edged out the Tigers 19-18 in the third quarter, but Bardstown still retained a sizeable 58-36 lead heading into the fourth quarter.

The Tigers were able to hold off the Commanders by scoring 18 points in the final period to leave Springfield with a 76-53 victory.

Four Bardstown players scored in double digits. Demarco Phillips and Jordan Hickman led the Tigers with 18 points each, followed by Damien Edelen with 12 and Rashaun Phillips with 11.

Lee Mudd was the sole player to score in double digits for Washington County with 13 points on the evening. Joseph Hamilton and Joe Joe Simms each had nine points for the Commanders, all of Simms’ points came by hitting three out of seven attempted three-point shots.

The Tigers simply out-shot and out-rebounded the Commanders to control the game from the start. Bardstown shot 57.4 percent from the floor, hitting 31 of 54 shots. They shot 53.8 percent from the free-throw line, knocking down 14 out of 26 attempts. The Tigers had 38 rebounds, 17 turnovers, 16 steals and 20 personal fouls.

The Commanders went 16 for 47 from the field for 34 percent, while shooting 75 percent from the charity stripe, making 15 out of 20 shots. WC had 14 rebounds, 19 turnovers, seven steals and 15 personal fouls.

Bardstown 18 22 18 18 76

WCHS         8   9 19 17 53

Bardstown (76) - D. Phillips 18, Hickman 18, D. Edelen 12, R. Phillips 11, S. Edelen 8, Cochran 4, Downs 2, McCarty 2, Shrewsbury 1

Three-point shots: None

Washington County (53) - Mudd 13, J. Simms 9, Joseph Hamilton 9, Abell 8, Purdom 7, Hale 4, A. Simms 2, Sexton 1

Three-point shots: J. Simms 3, Joseph Hamilton 1, Abell 2

With the remaining district schedule coming up between now and Jan. 23, the Commanders find themselves with their backs to the wall and must win out the final three games if they want to improve their standings.

At press time, the Commanders were scheduled for another district challenge Tuesday night against Nelson County. Visit www.readthesun.com for details of that game.

The Commanders will be back in action Friday night in Bardstown as they look for some revenge against the Tigers at Bardstown High School. It will be a double-header with the Commanderettes facing off against the Lady Tigers as well.

Catch all the action live on WYSB 102.7 FM with the pre-game show hitting the air at 5:45 p.m. and get all the latest district standings and game highlights in next week’s edition of The Springfield Sun.