Hopkinsville’s ability to beat Taylor County’s press and easy buckets off turnovers helped the Tigers advance to the Elite 8. Taylor County’s turnovers and 17 missed free throws helped the Tigers finish the Cardinals.
The Tigers also had great ball movement due to sensational guard play. It was unbelievable how easy the Tigers beat coach Gatewood’s and the Cardinal’s full court press. The mistakes lead to 34 points.
#32 Jaqualis Matlock had 16 points and 7 boards to earn player of the game accolades. #4 AJ Tyler led the Tigers with 11 points in the first half going perfect from deep. The Tigers bench really stood out with 18 points in the 1st half.
Taylor County led by Quentin Goodin’s 22 points but struggled from the charity stripe (7-15). David Sloan put in 19 and both players combined had 42 of Taylor County’s 64 but comitted 6 first half turnovers. The Cardinals left 17 points at the charity stripe(17-32) 53%. Cardinals shot 40% for the game and 41.7 from deep.
The Cardinals got a lift from #2 Cameron Morgeson in the second half and helped cut the Hopkinsville lead and give the Cardinal fans something to cheer about.
That wasn’t the case due missed free throws, turnovers, and defensive breakdowns down the stretch.
It’s difficult for a team who hasn’t been to state to win a game due to the big stage and the pressure to perform. Coach Gatewood called many timeouts to calm down or correct his team.
As for Hopkinsville the Sweet 16 isn’t a new scene to them. They have advanced to the tournament the last 4 years. That experience really seemed to be the edge the Tiger’s needed along side their balanced offense.
The Tigers move on to the Elite 8 and will play tomorrow. Follow the Tigers on Twitter @hoptowntigers
As for the Cardinals they will return 3 starters and lose seniors Brandon Berry and Austin Webster. Look for them to be favorites to win district and region again next year.
Follow the Cardinals on Twitter @sportstaylor
To see more highlights and articles of the Sweet 16 visit kybasketball.tv or follow us on Twitter @kybasketballtv