Cloverdale coach Pat Rady switched defenses at the start of the second
half against Southmont on Saturday and the Clovers executed it with tenacity and skill.
The result was Cloverdale's boys holding the Mounties to five points in a decisive third period that spurred them to a 68-55 non-conference victory on the Clovers' court.
Cloverdale (7-3) led 39-35 following a fast-paced first half in which the Mounties had done most of their scoring from the outside.
Southmont (5-5) committed seven of its 14 turnovers in the third and took only seven shots from the floor, making two 2-point baskets.
Cloverdale's defense earned it 15 shots and the Clovers made seven, including a trio of three-pointers. They scored 15 points, boosting Cloverdale into a 54-40 lead going into the fourth quarter in which they were never threatened.
"We changed defenses at halftime and that's the first time we've played that defense this year," Rady said.
Southmont coach Dave Williamson thought it was a 3-2. Rady wouldn't confirm it. He wants opponents to have to scout it.
"They switched defenses at the start of the second half to a 3-2 (zone)
and covered us outside," Williamson said. "We went inside and we weren't
effective. Their defense worked. They owned us in the third quarter."
Cloverdale bounced back from a loss Friday at Cascade. It was the
Clovers' first game since Dec. 20.
"What a difference 24 hours makes," Rady said. "We shot well and I was pleased with our defense. We were a lot sharper in all aspects. We got help from the bench. It was a good team win."
Rady thought the Clovers took strides to getting back into game-playing
shape after the 24-day layoff.
"I thought we got a lot of the good play back," he said. "It was a very
Chase Haltom led Cloverdale with 21 points and Kyle McCammon had 16. Center Luke Lovins, a 6-foot-8 senior, was a force inside with 14 points, six rebounds and five blocked shots.
"We balanced our perimeter and outside play," Rady said.
Southmont burst out to a 12-3 lead, but Haltom scored 14 straight points on four three-pointers and a lay-up for a 17-12 lead.
Southmont responded with an 8-0 run before Lovins scored inside as the Mounties took a 20-19 lead at the close of the first quarter.
The Mounties tied the game at 35 for the final time late in the half.
Haltom put the Clovers on top with a jump shot from the lane and senior Tyler Cooper's offensive rebound and putback at the buzzer provided momentum and a four-point advantage going into the locker room.
Cloverdale opened the second half with seven straight points. McCammon drove the lane and made an 8-foot jumper and followed with a high-arching three-pointer. Michael Neese followed with a 17-foot jumper for a 46-35 lead.
The Clovers went into the four-corners offense with six minutes to play.
"That was our four corners to score," Rady said. "There are two ways to play it. They (Southmont) had not fouled (in the third period), so we had to
look at the basket. We thought spreading the floor would be to our advantage. Ithought we were a little quicker."
Cloverdale expanded its lead to 66-50 with a minute to play, when Rady removed his starters. The Clovers took time off the clock and then fed, mostly from McCammon, Lovins for lay-ups. Lovins had eight fourth-period points.
The Clovers out-rebounded Southmont 30-23 and had 12 turnovers to 14 for
Haltom made 8-of-17 field goal attempts, including 5-of-11 3-pointers.
Lovins was 7-of-10 from the field. McCammon was 4-of-14 on 3-pointers and
5-of-15 shooting overall and had five assists.
Sophomore Craig Blair had eight points off the bench for the Clovers.
Southmont guard Adam Welcher had 10 points in the first half, but went
0-for-7 on 3-pointers and missed his only 2-pointer in a scoreless second half.
"They covered Welcher well," Williamson said.
Cloverdale's next plays Friday at home against Greencastle in a West
Central Conference game.
Southmont 20 15 5 15--55
Cloverdale 19 20 15 14--68
Southmont: Burkett 3-3 2-3 8, Martin 3-8 5-6 11, Kellie 0-4 0-0 0, Welcher
4-18 0-0 10, Rhoads 5-9 0-0 14, Jeffries 1-4 0-0 2, Miller 2-3 0-0 4, Price 2-5 1-1 6, Totals 20-54 FG, 8-10 FT, 55 TP.
Cloverdale: Neese 2-6 0-0 5, Trinkle 0-2 0-0 0, Lovins 7-10 0-0 14, McCammon
5-15, 2-2 14, Haltom 8-17 0-1 21, Cheatham 0-1 0-0 0, Dean 1-2 0-0 2, Blair
2-3 3-3 8, Cooper 1-1 0-0 2, Faletic 0-0 0-0 0, Totals 26-57 FG, 5-6 FT, 68 TP.
3-pt. FG -- Southmont 7-24 (Rhoads 4-8, Welcher 2-12, Price 1-4), Cloverdale
11-30 (Haltom 5-11, McCammon 4-12, Blair 1-2, Neese 1-5), Rebounds -- Southmont 23 (Martin 7), Cloverdale 30 (Lovins 6), Blocked shots -- Southmont 0, Cloverdale 6 (Lovins 5), Assists -- Southmont 5 (Rhoads 2), Cloverdale 7 (McCammon 5), Steals -- Southmont 3 (Welcher 2), Cloverdale 7 (Neese 4). Total fouls -- Southmont 9, Cloverdale 11, Fouled out -- None.