Central High School boys' basketball welcomed Shelbyville to the Patch Tuesday night for a district showdown. In a performance that wasn't perfect, the Raiders took a lead from the first quarter on to defeat the Eagles 80-64.
"It was a great win. Any time you get a district win it's great," Coach Micah Williams said afterward. "We turned the ball over way too much tonight, just being a little impatient against their pressure, we've just got to calm down and relax a little bit."
The Raiders committed 21 turnovers over the course of the game, but Shelbyville was unable to take advantage. The Eagles' only lead of the night was by one point during the first quarter. CHS quickly got back in front, building and maintaining its lead despite the turnover issue.
"We got lucky honestly," Kyle Farless said. "Everybody just needs to keep shooting. Our shots were falling, unlike last game."
The game started out close in the first quarter. Following a tie at four apiece, Farless hit a three-pointer to put the Raiders ahead. Shelbyville responded with a three- pointer of its own, along with a free throw, taking an 8-7 lead with 2:30 left in the quarter. Darius Rozier responded with another CHS three to put the Raiders back in front. By the quarter's close the boys had taken a 15-8 advantage.
In the second quarter alone, seven different Raider players hit a basket, expanding the Raiders' lead to double digits. The team's defensive pressure played a key role as well, allowing CHS to go up 43-26 at the half.
"The defensive energy was there," Williams explained. "I think that's what really helped propel and get us our lead."
The Raiders didn't allow the lead to fall below double digits for the game's remainder, giving the team its fifth-straight win since losing to Oakland on Dec. 22.
"It's huge, now that that we've played everybody from the district now one time we're getting ready to start seeing teams again," Williams said. "It's huge with that momentum."
Farless led the team Tuesday night with 22 points. Rozier followed with 16. Shawn Anderson finished with 10 points, with Andrew Mahaffey and CJ Anthony right behind at eight each. Chase Simpkins and Conner Shemwell both had five points, with Harley Hinshaw coming in at four. Jaxon Vaughn hit a pair of free throws for two points.