McClain Christian reached the championship game of the inaugural Bulldog Invitational Tournament by beating Cornerstone Baptist 58-45 Thursday night at Immanuel Baptist.
The host Bulldogs will face Madison Academy, a 55-17 winner over Bowling Green Christian, at 2:30 p.m. Friday in the title game. Cornerstone and Bowling Green will meet in the consolation contest at 6.
“It was a great win, and probably our best performance of the season,” said McClain coach Scott Liptrap. “Hopefully we can keep the momentum into tomorrow’s championship.”
Eli Shouse supplied 15 points and six rebounds for the Bulldogs while Jon Whitener totaled 10 points and five caroms. Charlie Booher and Will Norton each notched nine points and Evan Tubb seven rebounds.
Paul Byrnes poured in 19 points for Cornerstone, which fell behind 20-10 in the first quarter.
All four teams are independent teams not affiliated with any conference. McClain athletic director Seth Bass said he is looking to expand the field to eight teams next year and possibly 16 by 2016, in which case other schools would host opening rounds. The event was created to give independent schools and their players a chance to experience a postseason tournament.
“It was a great opening night of the tournament,” Bass said. “It’s the first time we’ve tried something like this, and we hope to get some more independent teams involved next season.
“We’re so grateful to Immanuel Baptist for allowing us to have such a great venue to host at.”