Centre Cougars showed their talent last week at the Herington Pre-season Tournament by winning two of three matchups. They defeated Wichita Classic on Friday, 51-46, and Herington on Saturday, 39-35, to take third place.
The Lady Cougars won 34-31 against Wichita Classic Friday but lost to Madison, 50-41, Saturday, finishing fourth.
Both teams lost to Lebo on Thursday. The boys lost 75-50, and the girls lost, 56-44.
The Cougars got off to a slow start against Wichita Classic. A free throw by Cole Methvin was Centre’s only point in the first quarter compared to 16 by Wichita.
However, they staged a strong comeback, and by 5:40 in the third quarter had tied the game at 27-27.
Centre surged to a 9-point lead in the fourth quarter, but the Saints got within 2 points twice in the final minute before Cole Srajer made a 3-pointer to give Centre a 5-point victory.
Against Herington, the game was close throughout. Both teams shot poorly in the first half, and the game was tied at 13-13 at halftime.
Cody Svoboda was the star of the third quarter, making a basket and two treys, helping Centre to a 26-21 lead.
The Railers closed the gap to 2 points and tied the game with 3 minutes remaining. Svoboda made two baskets and Xavier Espinoza made a free throw to return the lead to Centre, but a 3-pointer by Herington closed the gap to 2 as time was running out. Two free throws by Dylan Deines sealed the victory for the Cougars.
The Lady Cougars had a comfortable 9-point lead against Wichita Classic at halftime after a second quarter that saw Kelsey Hett, Haizea Diego, Shelby Pankratz, and Kate Basore combine for 14 points.
Centre was outscored 16-12 in the fourth quarter. Wichita got within 1 in the final minute, but Espinoza made 3 free throws, offsetting a free throw by Wichita, to give Centre a 3-point victory. Pankratz and Basore each scored 10 points.
The girls struggled to score in their loss to Madison. They trailed 25-16 at halftime. Hett scored 8 points in the fourth quarter on two 2-point baskets, a 3-pointer, and a free throw, helping Centre to outscore Madison 12-9, but it was not enough to secure a victory.
Hett was high-point man with 12 points, followed by Basore and Espinoza, 8 points each, and Pankratz, 7.
Centre teams will play on the road Friday against Canton-Galva.