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Mid-game drought dooms Champs in district loss

Posted on Tuesday, February 6, 2024 at 11:26 pm

Post Photo by Chris Siers Senior Zach Crosslin fights his way to the rim and finishes through contact.

BELL BUCKLE — A promising start against Grundy County was ultimately undone by a mid-game scoring drought as the Cascade Champions (9-15) dropped a tough District 9-AA loss, 61-50.
After building a 13-point lead following a made 3-pointer at the 5:47 mark of the second quarter, Cascade managed just 10 points over the following 12:33 of game time, spilling well into the third quarter.
During that span, Grundy County (17-4, 3-3) erased the 13-point lead, on the efforts of Sam Parson.
A prolific scorer for the Yellow Jackets, Cascade did a stellar job of slowing Parson in the start of the game on Tuesday, limiting him to four points through the first frame.
Eventually, Parson began to heat up and went for 12 points in the second quarter as Grundy County trimmed the Cascade lead to a single possession by halftime.
Through the first five minutes of the third, Cascade and Grundy County swapped control of the lead three times until the Yellow Jackets went ahead at the 3:18 mark of the quarter.
Cascade managed just six points in the third, with senior Saebyn Burris scoring a pair of baskets.
After holding Parson scoreless in the third, the Yellow Jacket star went back to work and finished the game with 12 more points in the fourth and at one point, extended Grundy County’s lead to 17 points with less than five to go in regulation.
Even with the seemingly impossible task of erasing a 17-point deficit, Cascdae eventually cut the Grundy County lead to seven points with inside a minuet to go.
But in that final minute, Grundy was able to stretch the lead back to eight points and capped the night with a 3-pointer at the buzzer for the double-digit win.
Parson led all scorers with 28 points and interestingly enough, Grundy County finished the game 7-of-12 from the free throw line, while Cascade was 0-for-7 at the charity stripe.
Still, Burris and McElroy combined for 33 points, with McElroy leading the way with 17, including three 3-pointers.
The loss dents the Champs’ standings in the District 9-AA race, but Cascade has a chance to climb back to .500 in the standings on Friday night.
The Champions will close the regular season on Friday night, hosting Forrest at 7:30 p.m.

Grundy Co. 7 18 12 24 — 61
Cascade 15 12 6 15 — 50

Grundy Co.: Sam Parson 28, Dylan Sanders 8, Reece Strong 8, Garrick Easterly 8, Dylan Garcia 5, Bryce Howell 4.
Cascade: Isaac McElroy 17, Saebyn Burris 16, Henry Stone 5, Wickey Parker 4, Logan Pulley 4, Tucker McGee 2, Zach Crosslin 2.
3-Point goals: Grundy Co. (8): Parson 3, Sanders 2, Easterly 2, Garcia; Cascade (4): McElroy 3, Stone.
Halftime score: Cascade 27, Grundy Co. 25.