Bulldogs nearly knock off ranked league foe
- Gary Lindberg
- Madras Pioneer - Sports
chance was there for an upset.
The Culver boys' basketball team took a lead early in the fourth quarter against No. 8 Kennedy in a Tri-River home game Thursday.
The Trojans recovered though, winning by six points to stay alone in second place of the Tri-River race. Culver also stayed close to East Linn Christian (in Lebanon) in a Saturday league game before falling.
The Tri-River season continues with a pair of home games. The Bulldogs host Santiam on Thursday and Scio on Saturday.
Those teams are tied for sixth at 3-5, giving Culver (1-7) a chance to jump back into the Tri-River district race. The league's top seven teams advance onto the district tourney.
After that, the Bulldogs travel to Delphian on Tuesday, Jan. 22. Culver also had a game at Western Mennonite (on Tuesday, Jan. 15, played after press time).
Kennedy 60, Culver 54: An 8-0 spurt put the Bulldogs ahead early in the fourth quarter.
A 10-footer by John Decker started the run. Then Nevin Lewis made a driving layup. Cody Tadlock added to the run by draining a pair of free throws and then an inside shot.
Kennedy went on its own run, scoring 10 of the game's next 13 points. A free throw by Decker and 3-pointer by Riley Gibson kept the Bulldogs close.
Ultimately, free throws did the hosts in. The Trojans made 5 of 9, led by post Nick Cunningham making three. The 6-foot-4 Cunningham led the Trojans with 21 points.
For Culver's balanced attack, Decker had 13 with Tadlock adding 12, Lewis 11 and Gibson eight.
East Linn Christian 64, Culver 53: The Bulldogs jumped ahead by six in the first quarter, 17-11. The Eagles answered with their own 17-point quarter to go ahead by a point at halftime.
East Linn Christian crept away after that, outscoring the visitors 36-26 in the second half.
Decker led the Bulldogs with 20 points, including four 3-pointers. Tadlock added 15 and Lewis 12.