'Dawgs open season with victory
Thursday, October 30, 2008
LEBANON, Tenn. – Brandon Springer scored five points in a 12-1 run in the second half and four Cumberland players netted double figures, helping the Bulldogs to a season-opening 62-56 victory over Shorter College at the Berry College Classic in Rome, Ga., Thursday night.
 
Cumberland (1-0) was tied at 24 with the Hawks at halftime and led just 43-42 with 8:50 to play before taking control of the contest. Rontreal Braxton made one free throw and then hit a bucket before Quentin Turner scored and Jamar Finley added two foul shots. Springer then scored the final five points of the run, the last on an old-fashioned three-point play with 5:17 on the clock.
 
Shorter began fouling not long after to get back in the game and got as close as five in the final minutes thanks for the Bulldogs hitting just 21-of-37 at the charity stripe.
 
CU limited Shorter All-American Tomas Pranciliauskas to 6-of-18 shooting from the field, including 3-for-11 from 3-point range. The Hawks made just 37 percent as a team from the field.
 
Quentin led the Bulldogs with 14 points, including 10-of-13 at the foul line, while Thomas Douglas added 13, nine in the first half. Springer tallied 11 and Simms 10 in the victory, the first of seven consecutive road tilts for Cumberland to begin the season.
 
The Bulldogs held Shorter scoreless for the first four minutes of the game before Fred Christopher scored for the Hawks with 15:38 remaining in the first half. Douglas hit a 3-pointer two minutes later for CU, part of a 12-4 run to start the game and three of his nine points in the opening period.
 
Cumberland led 18-9 with 7:16 in the first half after a field goal from Simms, but Shorter put together a 14-2 run over the next five minutes to take a three-point lead just before intermission. Rodney James hit both ends of a 1-plus-1 for the Bulldogs and Mario Stowers had a basket with 18 seconds to play, knotting the game at 24 at the break.
 
Cumberland takes on host Berry College Friday at 7 p.m. CT before playing Middle Tennessee in an exhibition Saturday at 4 p.m. at Murphy Center.