Zack Hall hit an early 3-pointer 11 seconds into the first quarter to put Cookeville in front and the Cavaliers controlled the remainder of the contest, notching a 71-56 victory at Tullahoma on Saturday.
After Hall hit his early basket, Jake Hollandsworth connected with the Wildcats’ first field goal of the game. Ben Fulton then added a 3-pointer and another basket, before Hollandsworth landed another shot, cutting Tullahoma’s deficit to 13-9 with 3:46 remaining in the opening period.
Cookeville countered with a 12-0 run, upping its lead to 25-9 after Alex Garrett hit a 3-pointer with 51 seconds left in the opening period. Race Marin added a 3 of his own for Tullahoma with 1 second left in the first quarter, making the score 25-12.
In the second period, the teams battled back and forth, with Cookeville still holding on to the advantage, taking a 35-20 lead with 1:32 remaining in the first half. Garrett added a final basket for the Cavaliers, but Joe Duncan hit a 3-pointer for THS, making the score 37-23 at halftime.
Cookeville took control early in the third quarter, putting up seven of the first eight points in the period, opening up a 44-24 advantage.
Tullahoma followed with an 11-2 run, cutting its deficit to 46-35 with 1:50 remaining in the third quarter. That run for the Wildcats was led by Hollandsworth, who scored seven points, while Fulton and Marin each added a basket of their own.
Austin Secrest added a 3-pointer for Tullahoma. However, Cookeville went on to score six more points in the third quarter, taking a 52-38 advantage into the final period of play.
Cookeville picked up where it left off to start the fourth quarter, going on a 9-3 run, and leading 61-41 with 5:20 remaining on the clock. Hollandsworth hit a 3-pointer for Tullahoma, before Corvion Fields added a basket of his own, cutting the Wildcats’ deficit to 61-46 with 4:53 left in the fourth quarter.
The Cavaliers went on to score eight-straight points to increase that advantage to 69-48 with 2:32 remaining in the contest. Tullahoma followed with eight-straight points, as Marin and Secrest each scored three points, while Fulton added a basket of his own.
Garrett scored the game’s final points, landing a shot with 36 seconds left for Cookeville, giving his team the victory. Garrett led Cookeville with 25 points on the night.
Hollandsworth led the Wildcats in scoring, putting up 18 points. Secrest, Fulton and Marin all added double figures, each finishing with 10 points. Duncan finished his night with five points, while Fields and Matthew Ross each scored two.
The Wildcats (6-18, 2-8) were scheduled to host Columbia on Tuesday. However, as of press time, the result of that game was unavailable.
Tullahoma will wrap up the regular season on Thursday when it hosts Franklin County. Tipoff of the girls game is scheduled for 6 p.m. and the boys will take the floor 15 minutes after that contest concludes. Prior to the boys game, THS will honor its senior boys basketball players and cheerleaders.