The Centralia High School Panther basketball teams split the difference with the visiting Macon Tigers.
The Lady Panthers lost 54-37 and the Panther boys won 76-53.
The Lady Panthers are now 8-11 and the boys are 18-4.
Macon scored first in the girls’ game, but Centralia hit back with the one-two punch of Baylee Beard scoring from the inside and Anna Romine
scoring from the outside to make it 4-2, Centralia.
Macon scored again to tie the game at four points.
The teams traded the lead in the first quarter, with Centralia coming out on top, finishing the first in the lead, 11-10.
The Lady Panthers played hard and tenaciously but were unable to hold the lead.
Macon’s Lexi Miller sank a series of three-point shots early in the second to help Macon grab the lead and they were able to keep it.
The teams went into halftime with Macon ahead 24-16.
“Macon is a solid team,” Becca Schemmer, Lady Panther head coach said afterward.
They get 10, 14 points ahead, they know how to close a game.
Macon finished the third ahead, 41-25 and clinched it 54-37.
Mary Kate Bennett led the Lady Panthers with 11 points, backed up by Beard and Jozelynn Bostick with six each, and Romine and Harper Sontheimer with four.
Tierra Wood and Katie Richardson led Macon with 12 each.
Centralia balanced the scales with the boys’ game.
“We came out for the lead early,” Scott Humphrey, Panther boys head coach said afterward. “We came out, defended hard, rebounded hard and attacked the boards. We did a good job in all facets of the game.”
Centralia started the game scoring.
Within second of the tip-off Jackson Wells put Centralia on the scoreboard with a west-side three-pointer. Then a Dallas Lewis free-throw and a John Durant layup made the game 6-0 Centralia before Macon could score.
They did, one basket, and Wells answered with another three-pointer.
Centralia was up 9-2 less than two minutes into the game.
They kept the momentum.
The first quarter ended with Centralia leading 24-15 and the went into halftime, still ahead, 45-24.
It was more of the same in the third which Centralia finished on top, 61-43.
Humphrey emptied his bench in the last minutes of the fourth and the Panthers finished of the Tigers 76-53.
The Panthers had four players score in double digits: Durant with 19, Guy Moran, who scored his 1,00oth high school varsity point last week against Highland – 18, Lewis – 13 and Wells-10.
Macon’s Boston Douglas led the Tigers with 13.
“Pitch to the post and shoot threes,” Macon Head Coach Dale Deveport said when asked how he had planned to deal with Centralia’s height and strength advantage. “Obviously, it didn’t work well, they have experience on us too. Three of my starters are freshmen.”
Macon is now 6-15.
For more, see next week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.