Bulldogs couldn't close vs. Cobras

Jan. 17—Wins have been tough to come by for the inexperienced GMC Prep boys basketball team this season, so when an opportunity presents itself like it did Tuesday and the Bulldogs don't cash in, it really hurts.

GMC led visiting Twiggs County for over half the game, but collapsed in the second half of what became a 49-37 region loss.

"I think we saw what we've been seeing most of the season," Bulldogs head coach Bo Kilby said. "We play really good GMC basketball for one or two quarters then it seems like we just don't have the experience to go a full game."

The home team got off to a great start. There was energy on both ends of the floor as the 'Dogs were ahead by as many as eight points. Junior Cam Duke had a couple of good takes to the basket and sophomore Cam Lango got his hand on a Twiggs shot attempt from deep as GMC took a 12-5 lead into the second. Things started to cool off from there.

The Cobras came out with a renewed vigor to open the pre-halftime frame while the Bulldogs struggled from the floor. Returning to action for the first time in over a month due to a knee injury, junior Logan McMillan hit from deep at the 5:30 mark. It was a scoring desert from that point on for the Bulldogs until McMillan beat the halftime buzzer with another 3. Despite the struggles, GMC was still up 20-14 through two played.

The Bulldogs held on to their lead until about midway through the third. Twiggs' shots were falling as the Cobras battled back to tie the game up at 23-all. There were three lead changes and another tie through the rest of the period, but it was Twiggs on top at quarter's end, 37-30. The visitors' 23-point surge was helped by the friendliest of bounces on a 3 from the left corner by Daniel Pitts, and they got another good look from senior Tykerrion Williams in the waning minutes.

Down but not out, GMC cut the margin back to within one possession at 37-34 with six minutes remaining. Kilby called a timeout to set up a play, and it got the desired shot multiple times down the floor. Problem was that none of them fell. Twiggs' Williams had a nice double-clutch layup followed by a floater to keep his team's momentum going. The Bulldogs never got closer than that three-point deficit with the region contest on the line.

"I feel like we can hang with anybody in the region," said Kilby. "We just can't finish. I feel like that has a lot to do with how young we are."

GMC was led in scoring by junior Josh Walker's 13 points while McMillan pitched in 12.

The loss dropped the Bulldogs to fourth in the region behind Twiggs heading into a weekend of home games against Hancock Central Friday (another region matchup) and Tattnall Square Academy Saturday (non-region).