They’re small — just eight players to be exact — but the Centre girls’ basketball team proved last week that they can win games.
After losing to Chase County, 65-36, Thursday, they defeated Herington, 39-34, Friday and Lebo, 37-32, Saturday.
The third-place game was without star player Kelsey Hett, the tallest member of the team, who was out with a wrist injury.
The girls jumped out to a good start with 3-point shots by Carly Deines, Allie Hird, and Samantha Espinoza. Lebo stepped up its play, and Centre led 13-11 after one quarter.
After a devastating 3-point second quarter that put Alyssa and Samantha Espinoza on the bench with three fouls each, Centre outscored Lebo 9-0 and 12-10 in the second half for the victory.
Alyssa Espinoza led scoring with 13 points.
Scoring totals for all three games were Alyssa Espinoza, 33; Samantha Espinoza, 23; Hird, 9; Deines and Alex Remmers, 8 each; Emily Casey, 3; and Cailey Barney, 1.
“I am very pleased with the intensity that this team plays with,” coach Alan Stahlecker said.
The boys’ team finished 1-2, losing to Chase County 39-36, and Rural Vista, 42-19. They had no trouble putting away the Herington Railroaders on Friday. Jensen Riffel, Aiden Svoboda, and Xavier Espinoza combined for 16 points in the first quarter, and Centre led 16-6.
Jacob Hird, Espinoza, Lane Methvin, and Dalton Stika added 10 points in the second quarter for a 26-11 halftime lead.
The Cougars built their lead from there and won by 26 points. Espinoza led scoring with 15 points, followed by Stika with 10 and Hird with eight.
Espinoza led in rebounds with 15. Espinoza and Hird each had three steals.
Coach Richard Idleman was disappointed with the 1-2 finish for the week and the loss to Chase County.
“We should have won that game,” he said. “We will come to understand that when we’re not hitting beyond the arc, we need to drive and work the ball inside.”
Scoring totals for the week were Espinoza, 38; Stika, 18; Hird, 16; Svoboda, 13; Riffel, 10; and Methvin, 6.
Centre will play Wakefield at home Friday.