Carroll County’s Dakota Corbin (above, left) and Trimble County’s Michael Dunaway (right) battle for a rebound during Thursday’s clash in Bedford. The two centers were their team’s respective top scorers with Corbin tallying 21 points and 10 rebounds and Dunaway 23 points and 13 rebounds. The Raiders’ Evan Long (below, with ball) finds his route to the basket blocked by Carroll’s Blake Kruzan (left) and Isaiah Hogan. Long scored  16 points but the Panthers’ defense on him was one of the differences in Carroll’s 70-59 win. (Staff photos by David Campbell)
Carroll County’s Dakota Corbin (above, left) and Trimble County’s Michael Dunaway (right) battle for a rebound during Thursday’s clash in Bedford. The two centers were their team’s respective top scorers with Corbin tallying 21 points and 10 rebounds and Dunaway 23 points and 13 rebounds. The Raiders’ Evan Long (below, with ball) finds his route to the basket blocked by Carroll’s Blake Kruzan (left) and Isaiah Hogan. Long scored 16 points but the Panthers’ defense on him was one of the differences in Carroll’s 70-59 win. (Staff photos by David Campbell)
Carroll County shot the lights out from both the 3-point line and the free-throw line to roll a 70-59 win over Trimble County in boys basketball Thursday in Bedford.

The Panthers opened the game on fire from behind arc, hitting 11-of-20 from long range in the first half alone. When Carroll's outside shooting cooled, the Panthers took control at the free-throw line, hitting 12-of-15 from the stripe in the fourth quarter.

Faced against that onslaught Trimble County simply could not keep up and Carroll County closed out its second win of the young season.

"That's lights-out shooting right there," Carroll County head coach Carroll Yager said. "We don't normally shoot the ball (from outside) that well but we also don't normally shoot as poorly as we did in the opener (on Tuesday) ... Sometimes you're hitting and sometimes you cool off a bit. We were very fortunate to be hitting early and get a little bit of a lead."

Carroll County (2-0) began firing away right from the start. Jacob Wise hit the first of the Panthers' dozen treys a minute and a half into the game and added a second 3-pointer a few minutes later. Austin Crowell, Isiah Hogan, Dakota Corbin and Boo Donahue each added long-range shots as the Panthers sank six in the first quarter.

The Panthers kept up the sharpshooting in the second quarter with five more treys, two from Corbin and one each from Blake Kruzan, Crowell and Donahue to bring the total to 11 by halftime.

Despite the long-distance show put on by Carroll County, Trimble County (0-1) was still in the game. Six-foot-five sophomore center Michael Dunaway scored 14 of his game-high 23 points in the first half and the Raiders went 14-for-20 from the free-throw line thanks to 12 Panther fouls.

Trimble coach Johnny Leep III felt fortunate to be down only 44-30 at the halftime and thought, for the most part, his team played well in its season opener.

"They shot it well. It was probably a coaching mistake on my part. We came out in zone but, frankly, I was terrified of getting into foul trouble," Leep said. "But when you look at it, we were down 18 at one point but we missed five-straight free throws and a wide-open basket. We easily could have been in the game."

Carroll County cooled off considerably in the second half and Trimble closed the gap to eight on three different occasions but could get no closer. The Panthers dashed any hopes of a Raider comeback with a strong performance at the foul line.

Carroll County ended up hitting 12-of-27 (44 percent) from 3-point range, a far better performance than it did from inside the arc where the Panthers were just 10-of-30 (33 percent).

Trimble County's numbers were just the opposite. The Raiders hit 12-of-21 (57 percent) on twos - thanks to a 7-for-10 performance in that area from Dunaway - while making just 5-of-21 (24 percent) from long range.

Containing Trimble County's shooters, particularly junior Evan Long, was Carroll County's focus coming in and Yager was overjoyed with the way his team executed that defensive game plan.

"Fans are going to look at the shooting, and it was impressive, but really it was defense that won us this game," Yager said. "Trimble County is more than capable of doing exactly what we did. They have some outstanding shooters. But I told this team that if we are going to be successful this season we're going to have to play defense and that's what we've done for the first two games."

Long finished with 16 points but was just 5-of-13 from the floor while being hounded by Carroll defenders all game. Leep admitted the Panthers' defensive game-plan was effective.

"We knew coming in that they were going to be physical with him and run two guys at him and we didn't do a good job of screening to get him open," Leep said. "He's a very unselfish player and he looked when he did get it and ball-faked to get them to go by. He just didn't get them to go. But he fed the ball to Michael well."

Dunaway scored 23 points and also had 13 rebounds while patrolling the paint. Andrew Young added 11 points for the Raiders.

Corbin had a big game once again for the Panthers, scoring 21 points on 7-of-10 shooting with 10 rebounds and three steals. The 6-foot-5 senior center was also 4-for-5 on 3-point shots, Carroll's most effective perimeter shooter.

"Dakota can do that. He's a good shooter," Yager said. "Of course, he's not going to hit 80 percent from out there every time. But he is more than capable of that and we have worked with him to shoot it more often."

Hogan hit two 3-pointers and finished with 13 points for the Panthers while Wise scored 11 and Crowell had 10 points and four assists.

Both teams return to action on Saturday with home games. Carroll County hosts Williamstown and Trimble County hosts Eminence.

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THURSDAY'S BOYS GAME

at Bedford, Ky.

CARROLL CO. 70, TRIMBLE CO. 59



CARROLL CO. 25 19 6 20 - 70

TRIMBLE CO. 12 18 10 19 - 59



CARROLL CO. (2-0) - (c)Corbin 21, (g)Hogan 13, (f)Wise 11, (g)Crowell 10, Kruzan 5, Schirmer 4, Donahue 3, (f)Adams 3, Ray 0.

TRIMBLE CO. (0-1) - (f)Dunaway 23, (g)Long 16, (g)Young 11, (f)Rexroat 7, (g)Blanton 2, James 0, Payton 0.



3-Point Goals - Carroll Co. 12 (Corbin 4, Wise 2, Hogan 2, Crowell 2, Donahue 1, Kruzan 1), Trimble Co. 5 (Long 3, Dunaway 1, Young 1). Rebounds - Carroll Co. 35 (Corbin 10), Trimble Co. 28 (Dunaway 13). Assists - Carroll Co. 14 (Crowell 4), Trimble Co. 8 (Blanton 4). Turnovers - Carroll Co. 16, Trimble Co. 17. Total Fouls - Carroll Co. 23, Trimble Co. 18. Free Throws - Carroll Co. 14-22, Trimble Co. 20-29. Fouled Out - Carroll Co.: Crowell. Trimble Co.: Rexroat. Next Game - Carroll Co. hosts Williamstown Saturday. Trimble Co. hosts Eminence Saturday.