KIDWELL - Following a very well-played second quarter, Tyler Consolidated coach J.C. Kimble left the court smiling and shaking his head with Silver Knights up by 10 points.
The next two chapters were not nearly as kind to Kimble's squad, and while the smile was gone, he again left the court shaking his head when all was said and done.
Senior Corey Aichele and junior Daniel Plaugher tallied 22 points each and Doddridge County caught fire in the second half, outscoring Tyler by a 42-22 margin in gaining a come-from-behind 65-55 victory against the Silver Knights at Tyler Consolidated High School.
Trailing 15-11after a quarter, Kimble's club went on a 16-4 burst to take a 27-19 upper hand, before settling for a seemingly comfortable 33-23 advantage at the break.
''We are a young team and we have not had the opportunity to play with the lead and we just didn't understand what it was all about,'' Kimble said. "I think that was evident (Friday).
''They kept getting lay-ups off of turnovers and we kept giving them the ball and building their confidence.''
A total of nine third-quarter miscues by the Knights (1-6) helped turn the tables as Coach Danny McConnell's Bulldogs used an 18-2 tear to reclaim the lead and exited the third period with a 47-42 edge.
The lead grew to as many as 12 twice in the final eight minutes, even though Doddridge struggled from the line and was just 6 of 16 in the quarter.
Darren Heintzman turned in a fine performance for Tyler Consolidated, scoring 19 points and pulling down seven rebounds. Overall, the Bulldogs grabbed a 41-34 advantage off the glass and turned the ball over 15 times, five less than their hosts.
''I really thought we had an early Christmas present when we left the floor at the half,'' Kimble said. ''But while we didn't get the win, I hope it was at least an encouraging effort for the kids.
''Our defensive intensity in the first half was amazing, but it was like someone let the air out of the balloon in the second half. We had some easy shots that we just didn't convert.
''I have to say that it is disappointing, but at the same time there were some encouraging things also. We will just continue to take baby steps and play for the future.''
Things won't get any easier for the Silver Knights, who make the short trip to New Martinsville on Tuesday to battle arch-rival Magnolia.