• Centennial senior Anthony Hunter scored a game-high 16 points in the Spartans’ 76-58 District 5-5A home win over Granbury Friday afternoon. BURLESON STAR/RICKY MOORE

Spartans smack Granbury at home

Just when it seemed Granbury was going to give Centennial a test on Friday, the Spartans pressing defense took over and helped them to a blowout District 5-5A win.

After Granbury tied things at 17-17 on the first possession of the second quarter, the Spartans used an 18-8 run to take control on the way to a 76-58 home win.

“Glad my guys came and brought the energy today to be able to win another hard-fought district basketball game,” Centennial coach Trovocie Jackson said. “It was our goal going into the holiday break to have 12 wins and with today’s win, that’s what we have with this win. According to that benchmark, we are where I wanted us to be. Now going into the Christmas break the guys need to get some rest and get their bodies healed. We need to get our minds back right because we have a tough one as soon as we get to Midland.”

Centennial (12-4, 2-0) opens play today at the Byron Johnston Holiday Classic in Midland. The Spartans return to district play Jan. 4 hosting Mansfield Timberview, the top-ranked team in Class 5A according to the most recent Texas Association of Basketball Coaches poll. Centennial plays at Burleson Jan. 8.

The Pirates struggled after tying the game. Granbury’s next seven possessions ended in five missed shots and two turnovers.

The Spartans took full advantage of the Pirates scoring drought to build a 26-17 lead. After Granbury sliced the lead to 26-20, Centennial finished the quarter strong with nine-point run that stretched the advantage to 35-25 at halftime.

Even though Centennial’s pressing defense caused trouble the entire game, Jackson said the defense is still a work in progress.

“It’s not bad,” Jackson said. “The big thing right now is we are still taking bad angles. The effort behind the basketball is not that good. Our traps aren’t as solid as we want them to be. The best thing that is happening out of it is that our hands are active but that also gets us in foul trouble.”

Anthony Hunter paced Centennial with 16 points. In the Spartans district-opening win at Everman, Hunter scored the 1,000 point of his high school career. Centennial produced three other double-digit scorers in Tayton Conerway (15 points), Jacob Stuckey (13) and Zach Bolf (12).

Granbury (5-11, 0-2) was led in scoring by 15 points from Micah Tucker. Cade Dudley finished with 14 points.

Centennial 76, Granbury 58
Granbury    14    11    12    21    -    58
Centennial    17    18    21    20    -    76
Granbury (5-11, 0-2):
Micah Tucker 15, Cade Dudley 14, Michael Withey 7, Phillip Hayes 6, Golba 5, Gage Molinari 4, Blake Cason 3, Zach McCreight 2, Cage Crain 2.
Centennial (12-4, 2-0): Anthony Hunter 16, Tayton Conerway 15, Jacob Stuckey 13, Zach Bolf 12, Nathan Adcox 6, Jacoby Angel 5, Jeb Tobin 4, Caleb Werner 4, Monte Johnson 1.

Elks come up  short at Timberview

At halftime Friday, Burleson boys basketball team had played the state’s top-ranked team in Class 5A Mansfield Timberview to a draw at 25-25.

But the Elks couldn’t keep up the momentum in the second half.

Timberview’s pressure defense and double-teaming of Burleson guard Sam Martin proved too much in the second half as the Wolves pulled away for 66-49 District 5-5A win.

“Timberview turned up the heat and pressure (in the second half) and we had too many turnovers,” Burleson coach Joey Martin said. “I saw some good signs of improvement and things we can build on. The kids gave great effort and showed lots of heart against a really athletic and well-coached team.”

The Elks (4-10, 0-2) open play Friday at the Tyler Junior College Wagstaff Tournament. Burleson returns to 5-5A play Jan. 4 at Arlington Seguin. The Elks host Centennial Jan. 8.

In the third quarter, Timberview outscored Burleson, 15-7, to take a 40-32 lead. Then in the fourth quarter, the Wolves went on a 26-17 run to finish off the Elks.

Sidney McFail had a double-double effort with 18 points and 12 rebounds. Sam Martin came within two rebounds of a triple-double. The senior finished with 14 points, 11 assists, eight rebounds, and five steals. Brennan Zeiner scored 10 points and had eight rebounds.

Mansfield Timberview 66, Burleson 49
Burleson    12    13    7    17    -    49
Timberview    15    10    15    26    -    66
Burleson (0-2):
Sidney McFail 18, Sam Martin 15, Brennan Zeiner 10.
Timberview (17-0, 2-0): Tre White 18, C.J. Smith 17.

Lady Spartans get third district win

For the second time out in District 5-5A girls basketball play, Centennial slipped away with a tight win.

The Lady Spartans used a free throw and a last-second lay-up to top Granbury, 46-43, at home Friday afternoon.

The win kept Centennial (10-9, 3-1) in second-place in district play at the end of the year. The Lady Spartans open play today at the Lake Travis Tournament. Centennial resumes 5-5A play Jan. 4 hosting Mansfield Timberview, the second-ranked team in Class 5A according to the latest Texas Association of Basketball Coaches poll. The Lady Spartans play Jan. 8 at Burleson.

“We knew we needed to get out of this stretch against Everman and Granbury with two wins,” Centennial coach Valerie Wootan said.

Centennial held a 28-16 lead at halftime but let the 12-point lead slip away in the third quarter as the Lady Pirates (7-10, 1-3) went on an 11-4 run to close to within 32-28 starting the fourth quarter.

“We were really aggressive in the first half but that didn’t carry over into the second half,” Wootan said. “We settled for outside shots instead of getting the ball into the paint.”

Granbury made things interesting in the fourth quarter thanks to three three-pointers from Nina Parker. Then with 38 seconds to play, Morgan Ashmore’s three-pointer tied the game at 43-43.

Centennial regained the lead at 44-43 with 29.6 seconds to play thanks to the free throw by from Amyria Walker.

The Lady Pirates next possession was halted by a Ne’Kyria Rogers’ steal. With the clock running down Jolie Johnson’s pass found Kertisa Amos open in the lane for an easy layup that sealed the victory.
“We handled Granbury’s pressure much better tonight than we did Tuesday night at Everman,” Wootan said. “That was good to see. Granbury was very physical today and I thought, for the most part, we handled that well.”

Amos finished with a game-high 18 points while Rogers scored 11 points.

Parker tallied 13 points for Granbury. Ashmore scored 12 points and Mandy Withey had 11 points.

Centennial 46, Granbury 43
Granbury    6    10    11    16    -    43
Centennial    14    14    4    14     -    46
Centennial (10-9, 3-1):
Kertisa Amos 18, Ne’Khyria Rogers 11, Jolie Johnson 6, Trystan Clark 4, Savoria Anderson 4, Toni Howard 1, Amyria Walker 1
Granbury (7-10, 1-3): Nina Parker 13, Morgan Ashmore 12, Mandy Withey 11, Leah Parker 5, Ashtin Jinkerson 2.

Lady Elks lose to Timberview

Facing the No. 2 ranked team in Class 5A proved to be quite a task for Burleson’s girls basketball team Friday afternoon.

It didn’t take long for Mansfield Timberview to show why they are so highly-ranked in the most recent Texas Association of Basketball Coaches poll as the Lady Wolves held a 23-4 first-quarter lead and went on to a 78-22 District 5-5A win at home.

It was the final district game of 2018 for both teams. The Lady Elks (3-13, 0-4) begin play today at the Weatherford Tournament. Burleson returns to district play at Arlington Seguin Jan. 4 and hosts Centennial Jan. 8.

“I was really proud of how Trinitee (Johnson), Grace (Paden), Jordan (Walker) and Madison (McCall) played today,” Burleson coach Curtis Ennis said. “They made some mistakes but they never stopped attacking and competing on every possession they played.”

Johnson led the Lady Elks with 10 points and Walker finished with seven points.

The problem for Burleson was turnovers and a lack of rebounding especially defense rebounds.

“We had 27 turnovers at the halftime which turned into layups on the other end,” Enis said. “We also didn’t rebound the ball well enough and kept giving them too many second chances.”

By halftime, Timberview had built a 45-9 lead. The second-half the Lady Wolves outscored Burleson, 33-13.

“We came out of the gate too soft on defense and too slow on offense,” Enis said.

The Lady Wolves (19-1, 4-0) produced five double-figure scorers in the win.

Arianna Clark and N’Denasija Collins each scored 14 points. Kennedy Wilson finished with 13 points. Mikayla Hutchinson scored 11 points and Desiree Wooten added 10 points.

Mansfield Timberview 78, Burleson 22
Burleson    4    5    6    7    -    22
Timberview    23    22    14    19    -    78
Burleson (3-13, 0-4):
Trinitee Johnson 10, Jordan Walker 7, Madison McCall 2, Grace Paden 2, Emily White 1.
Timberview (19-1, 4-0): Arianna Clark 14, N’Denasija Collins 14, Kennedy Wilson 13, Mikayla Hutchinson 11, Desiree Wooten 10, Destiny Jackson 10, Timia Jefferson 8, Destiny Burton 6.

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