Dawgs find their stride, improve to 5-3

By Gini Davis

The Creswell Chroncle

The Bulldogs’ preseason record improved to 5-3 after besting Sheridan 70-54 on Dec. 12 and Elmira 64-46 on Dec. 15 in a pair of home games last week.

The Dawgs jumped out to a 23-8 first-quarter lead against Sheridan and never looked back. Creswell led 49-26 at halftime and 58-35 after three. Bulldog reserves played the entire fourth quarter and saw action in the third.

“We had eight live-ball steals and only 11 turnovers, and 16 assists as a team,” noted Creswell Head Coach Jesse Thomas. “We moved the ball really well and got out in transition.”

Tayler Forsman scored a game-high 17 points and added three rebounds and five assists.

Jack Callahan had 12 points, four rebounds and four assists; Eli Ream had 11 points, three assists and two steals; Chance Bellew had 10 points and five rebounds; and Cade Apo had nine points and 11 rebounds.

During the Elmira game, both teams started slow, but the Bulldogs led 14-10 after the first quarter, 25-17 at halftime, 40-32 after three, and outscored the Falcons 24-14 in the final period to secure the win.

Creswell was able to capitalize when the Falcons were forced to apply man-to-man pressure with time running out. “We got them on back cuts and lay-ups,” Thomas said. Austin Gabriel also hit a pair of back-to-back threes to spark the Dawgs.

Callahan led with 18 points and six boards. Forsman added 15 points, two assists and two steals; Ream had 12 points, three assists and a steal; Bellew had 10 points, five rebounds, three assists and two steals; and Apo had five rebounds.

“They zoned us almost the entire game, and we were able to execute our zone offense; we were patient and got good looks,” Thomas said. “We also did a really good job on defense, and only missed four free throws in the second half.”