Centre girls and boys placed fourth and seventh respectively in the weather-delayed Cougar Classic basketball tournament.
After defeating Rural Vista Friday, the Lady Cougars fell to Elyria Saturday and Wakefield Monday to take fourth place.
The victory against Rural Vista gave the team a lot of satisfaction. The Lady Cougars lost to Rural Vista in a close contest the previous week, but got their revenge by defeating the Heat, 39-21.
After Rural Vista scored two baskets, Shelby Pankratz scored 10 unanswered points for Centre. Ally Basore and Katie Marler joined Pankratz in scoring the next 10 points. Centre led 20-4 at halftime and built on that lead the rest of the game.
Pankratz scored 23 points.
Coach Alan Stahlecker said the team’s strong defensive effort contributed to the victory.
They faced a strong Elyria team in round two and were defeated, 46-28. Pankratz again led Centre’s scoring with 12 points.
Stahlecker was unhappy with how the team played.
“We got in a big hole to start, but we shouldn’t have lost that game,” he said.
Centre’s third-place contest with Wakefield was competitive. The Lady Cougars led by 8 points at halftime but lost 37-35. Leading scorers were Summer Espinoza, 11, and Pankratz, 10.
Stahlecker said a stepped-up defensive effort by Wakefield in the second half caused his players to lose their momentum. A 3-13 Wakefield scoring advantage in the third quarter turned the game in favor of the Lady Bombers.
“We gave Wakefield too many free throws, but they missed a lot of them and still gave us a chance to win,” he said. “We weren’t consistent in our scoring.”
The Centre boys’ team finished seventh after defeating Peabody-Burns 60-31 on Monday.
The second round proved to be the most exciting for the Cougars. They lost to Elyria Christian Saturday in a high-scoring 68-66 game.
It was a back and forth game, with the lead changing sides numerous times. Consecutive 3-pointers by Dylan Deines and a trey by Cole Srajer resulted in a 50-44 Centre lead at the end of the third quarter.
They built a 7-point lead, but led by just 1 with 39 seconds remaining. A 3-pointer by Elyria resulted in a 2-point loss for the Cougars.
Deines scored a career-high 27 points, and Srajer had 20.
Centre lost to Solomon in the first round, 65-33. The Cougars got into a hole early and never recovered. Deines scored 12 points.
The seventh-place matchup Monday against Peabody-Burns proved to be the easiest. Centre led the entire game and won by 29 points.
Three players finished in double figures: Deines, 18; Srajer, 14; and Cole Methvin, 12.