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home : sports : sports Saturday, June 25, 2016

1/16/2013 Email this articlePrint this article 
Central senior Mitch Green goes up for a shot under the basket during the second half of the Sabers’ 54-43 victory over Mount Vernon, Friday night. Green had four points in the game and tied for the team lead with four assists, while coming up with Central’s lone block. Photos by Ross Eberhart
Saber senior Lucas Sheppard attempts a shot between a pair of Mount Vernon defenders during the third quarter of Central’s victory over the Mustangs. Sheppard had six points in the game for the Sabers, who improved to 6-1 at home this season.
Sabers win again at home, knock off Mount Vernon

By Ross Eberhart
Sports editor

There is just something about playing at home that brings out the best in the Central boys basketball team.

With defense leading the way again, the Sabers improved to 6-1 in front of their home fans with a strong 54-43 victory over Mount Vernon, Friday night.

It was the sixth time this season that Central has held an opponent under 50 points this season. Not surprisingly, all six of those games have ended in Saber victories with five of them coming on Central's home floor.

It was the Mustangs who got on the board first with a free throw, but Central answered back with a long three-pointer from Kyle Bauer.

Mount Vernon took the lead right back with three points on a hoop and foul.

The Sabers, though, tied things up on an A.J. Smith free throw and then took a lead they would never relinquish when Christian Wright drained a three-pointer.

Lucas Sheppard added a hoop inside for the Sabers before Smith capped off an 8-0 run he began with two more free throws.

The Mustangs took back some of the momentum with a three-pointer, but two more Central free throws (these coming from Sheppard) made it 13-7 Sabers after a quarter of play.

The teams traded the first eight points of the second quarter (Bauer and Marty Green had hoops for the Sabers) before Central put together another run to push its lead into double digits.

Smith followed Green's hoop with a lay-in, while Bauer grabbed a Central miss and put it back for two more. Mitch Green finished the Saber surge after a lay-up thanks to a nice feed from Ma. Green and it was 23-11.

The Mustangs were not about to throw in the towel yet and responded in kind with a run of their own. Mount Vernon ended up scoring seven-straight points to pull within five.

The Sabers, though, got the last laugh as McClain Steffens buried a three-pointer for the final points of the first half to give Central an eight-point lead at the break.

The Sabers picked up right where they left off too, as they opened the second half with another three-pointer, this one from Bauer, to push the advantage back to 11.

The two teams traded hoops for the remainder of the quarter. Mount Vernon answered Bauer's trey with a bucket, while Mi. Green came back with a lay-up for the Sabers.

The Mustangs answered back only to see the Sabers score again on a Chris Keitel hoop inside. This time, Mount Vernon's response was a three-pointer.

The Sabers, though, were able to set up one final shot in the third quarter and it came from Wright, who had an open look for three and nailed it to make it 36-25 Central heading to the fourth.

Central rode the momentum of Wright's three right into the fourth quarter as they began to pull away with a 10-4 run.

Sheppard opened the quarter's scoring with a hoop inside and Mitch Kirby answered a Mount Vernon bucket with one of his own.

Kirby scored again moments later and was fouled on the shot, giving him an opportunity for a three-point play. The free throw missed its mark, but was corralled by Bauer, who put it back in for another hoop.

Mount Vernon scored once again, but this bucket was answered by two Smith free throws and it was 46-29 Sabers.

Central, though, could not fully put the Mustangs away and seven-straight Mount Vernon points cut the lead down to 10.

Kirby ended the run with a bucket and the Sabers seemed to be on their way again when Smith added a free throw and Wright connected on two freebies of his own.

The Mustangs, though, made one last run, using a bucket inside and a three-pointer to get within eight at 51-43.

They would get no closer, however, and Central ended the game at the free throw line with Trevor Green knocking down two free throws and Steffens one to wrap up the win.

Bauer led a balanced Central attack with 12 points and eight rebounds (also a team-high).

Smith and Wright both added eight points for the Sabers with Sheppard and Kirby scoring six and Mi. Green and Steffens four.

Steffens and Kirby added five rebounds as well, while Mi. Green and Smith both dished out a team-best four assists. The latter added two steals with the former coming up with the Sabers' lone blocked shot.

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