Back-to-back Region 3-4A wins by the Lancaster Bruins deflated the Catawba Ridge Copperheads boys’ basketball team’s hopes of making it to the playoffs.
The Bruins beat region leaders South Pointe Monday 52-50 and then pulled away for a 71-57 win over Catawba Ridge Tuesday ending the Copperheads’ post season hopes.
Lancaster used a 22-9 third quarter performance to pull away from Catawba Ridge, who fell to 6-8 overall and 2-5 in the region.
“The third quarter got us,” said Catawba Ridge head coach Brett Childers. “We have been a third quarter team all season. We just took our foot off the gas.”
The Copperheads did make a valiant fourth quarter effort scoring 23 points in the final period including opening the quarter up on a 7-0 run. However, Lancaster’s quickness led to Catawba Ridge turnovers resulting in the Bruins scoring in transition.
Catawba Ridge opened the game on an 8-2 run, but Lancaster put together a run of its own to come back and regain the lead. Both teams were able to trade baskets for most of the first quarter as the Copperheads took a 14-12 lead after the opening quarter.
Lancaster started showing its strength inside as they were able to get good penetration to the basket and also hit from beyond the arch. Catawba Ridge was also able to slice to the hole, but struggled with their outside game.
The third quarter was where things got away from the Copperheads. Lancaster had a three-point lead coming out of the locker room and opened the second half on a 17-4 run before Catawba Ridge was forced to take its second time out of the half.
Lancaster turned their three-point halftime lead into a 16-point lead going into the fourth quarter at 50-34. Catawba Ridge was able to start shooting better in the early goings of the final period, but also had five turnovers which the Bruins capitalized on.
Catawba Ridge was led by a season high from Grant Lovette with 25 points and Carter Hendrick added 13 points as well for the Copperheads.
“We did a lot of good stuff out there,” Childers said. “We just didn’t come out with the fire we needed for all four quarters.”
The Copperheads will finish their season Thursday at Indian Land.
Mac Banks: firstname.lastname@example.org, @fortprep