BATESVILLE — Getting off to a slow start in games has been a concern for head coach Aaron Garrett and the Batesville Bulldogs.
And it was the case again Saturday night.
The Hauser Jets were hitting shots from all over the floor and put a scare into the Batesville faithful.
Fortunately, the Bulldogs regrouped and went on to post their 10th win of the varsity basketball season. Batesville defeated the Jets 83-61.
Four different Jet players hit 3-pointers and another had a conventional three-point play. The result was a 15-6 lead.
It did not get any better for the Bulldogs. Hauser went on a 9-3 run and built a 24-9 lead.
Then something changed.
Offensively, shots finally started to fall. Defensively, the tempo and teamwork improved. The Bulldogs were more active rebounding at both ends of the floor.
The Bulldogs held the Jets to seven points in the second quarter, which enabled them to chip away at the 15 point deficit. Batesville closed the gap to 31-29 by halftime.
Senior Kassidy Kase helped set the tone for the comeback with his play at both ends of the floor. Kase scored seven points in the quarter and was a catalyst at the defensive end.
Senior Wes McKinney and junior Blake Walsman both hit a couple big shots in the second quarter as well to give the Bulldogs a lift.
Walsman sparked the Bulldogs with his aggressive play around the basket, especially in the third period. Walsman scored 13 of his team-high 23 points in the third quarter as the Bulldogs completed the comeback and turned it into a 15 point lead.
Junior Bryan Hoeing was hitting the glass hard and gradually found a rhythm offensively. After being held to four points in the first half, he countered with 17 in the second half.
When the final buzzer sounded, the Bulldogs outscored the Jets by 37 points over the final three-plus quarters to turn a 15 point deficit into a 22 point victory.