BELFRY Chandler Thompson wasn’t yet in town to see it, but something stuck in Lawrence County’s craw for the last calendar year.
The Bulldogs fell to Morgan County in the sectional round of the inaugural Kentucky 2A Tournament last season, missing out on a trip to Owensboro.
Lawrence County ensured that wouldn’t happen again. The Bulldogs topped Magoffin County, 86-79, in the final of the Section 8 Tournament at Belfry on Friday night.
“We’ve talked a lot about that,” Thompson, Lawrence County’s first-year coach, said of the 2A exit last season. “This group’s a very hungry group of kids. They’ve very motivated. They’re on a mission this year, and you could see that tonight. You could see the look in their eyes.
“They really wanted to win. They didn’t want to have the same feeling as last year; they wanted to get this overnight trip in Owensboro and play in a state tournament.”
Tyler Maynard pitched in 41 points to help pack Lawrence County’s proverbial bags. Cody Maynard added 18 points, draining four 3-pointers, and Trenton Adkins totaled 10.
The Bulldogs (10-6) trailed the Hornets (8-6) 18-15 after one quarter, but Lawrence County outscored Magoffin County 23-15 in the second.
“We started off not shooting the ball very well,” Thompson said, “but out kids stayed resilient, stuck to the game plan, just kept getting out and running and pushing the ball up and down the floor. We were finally able to start knocking down some shots. I think playing fast kind of played into our favor.”
Isaiah Salyer netted 28 points and Aden Barnett scored 22 for the Hornets. Grayson Whitaker chipped in 11.
The Bulldogs meet the champion of the Section 5 Tournament on Thursday night in Owensboro. Rowan County and Bourbon County will decide that titlist tonight.
LAWRENCE CO. 15 23 26 22 — 86
MAGOFFIN CO. 18 15 22 24 — 79
Lawrence County (86) — T. Maynard 41, C. Maynard 18, Sartin 2, B. Gillispie 7, Adkins 10, Ratliff 7, Fairchild 1, Lafferty, K. Gillispie. 3-Pt. FG: 8 (C. Maynard 4, T. Maynard 2, Ratliff 2). FT: 12-21. Fouls: 13.
Magoffin County (79) — Barnett 22, Salyer 28, Bailey 7, Whitaker 11, Litteral 7, Wilson 2, Henderson 2, E. Prewitt, Hanson, Bolen, Atkins. 3-Pt. FG: 6 (Salyer 3, Whitaker). FT: 13-19. Fouls: 19.