The last time Lower Columbia played Centralia, the Red Devils dropped 93 points at Myklebust Gym and dismissively dispatched the Blazers.
When Centralia welcomed in LCC, it was a much different story.
The Red Devils weathered a poor shooting night, bolstered by Samaad Hector’s 19 points and 15 rebounds off the bench, to gut out a 75-73 win, surviving a missed Blazer bunny at the buzzer.
“I thought they were going to be jacked up,” LCC coach Mickey Polis told Jordan Nailon of The Chronicle. “The second pass through league they made some adjustments, we made some adjustments. It’s on their home court and you knew they were going to shoot a little better. You knew this was going to be a little rivalry game with a lot of energy with a great atmosphere in it.”
Cody Young added 13 points and shot 10-of-12 from the free throw line. Martis Johnson had 11 points with 6 rebounds and a pair of steals.
Hector, though, was the backbone. Of his 15 rebounds, six came of the offensive end. The sophomore leads the entire conference in all rebounding categories, grabbing 5.7 offensive rebounds and 9.0 defensive rebounds for a total of 14.7 per game.
“Samaad has been a really big player for us the last two years,” Polis said. “He’s really matured for us the last two years both on the court and off the court.” ‘I’m glad he’s on our team because he just goes and grabs that basketball. It’s just a God-given ability and you can’t really teach that stuff.”
Centralia hit 12 3s, but shot just 39 percent (12-of-31). Kobe Matsen had 23 points, Taylor Pegginger had 14 and Jerry Boston added 13 for the Blazers.
Lower Columbia (19-4, 7-1) remain a game back of South Puget Sound for first place in the West standings. It hosts Highline on Saturday at 7 p.m., then visits the Clippers on Wednesday at 8 p.m.
Lower Columbia 75,
LOWER COLUMBIA — Samaad Hector 19, Cody Young 13, Martist Johnson 11, Alexis Angeles 9, Travis Patrick 8, Jonah Crumpton-Murray 7, Louden Wardius 7, Rarey Sommer 1, Dawson Fritz.
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CENTRALIA — Kobe Matsen 23, Taylor Pegginger 14, Jerry Boston 13, L’Marcus Walker 9, Elijah Hoover 7, Tyler Ashmore 4, Michael Adams 3, Jaylin Walker, Estefano Arceo-Hansen.
Halftime: Lower Columbia 36, Centralia 35
Centralia 68, Lower Columbia 57: The Red Devils shot just 33 percent from the floor, and the rival Blazers earned a little breathing room in Centralia on Wednesday.
Centralia emerging with a two-game lead over LCC in the West, moving to 8-0 while LCC fell to 6-2.
Cherita Daugherty led LCC with 16 points with 4 rebounds and 9 assists, but shot just 3-of-14 from the floor and 2-of-8 from deep.
Madison Mosier had 10 points, but was just 3-of-10 and 2-of-6 shooting.
Megan Cash led Centralia, which shot 46 percent (11-of-24) from 3-point range, with 18 points and Caitlin Yenne had 15 points.
“They knocked down shots,” LCC coach Lucas Meyers told Nailon. “They moved the ball well and we were a little undisciplined in our zone. They didn’t shoot the ball well in the first half and they shot 100 percent in the second half and that’s the difference. Some of that was our poor rotations and some of that was just them getting hot.”
Lower Columbia hosts Highline on Saturday at 5 p.m. and visits South Puget Sound on Wednesday at 6 p.m.
Centralia 68, Lower Columbia 57
LOWER COLUMBIA — Cherita Daugherty 16, Madison Mosier 10, Tommia Pakootas 9, Michaela Harris 6, Josie Schmitz 6, Madeline Jacobson 4, Jodi Noyes 4, Asia Castillo 2, Bailey Farrer, Danica Schmidt, Ally Harman.
CENTRALIA — Megan Cash 18, Caitlin Yenne 15, Lindsey Nurmi 12, Piper Cai 9, Rachel Wilkerson 8, Selena Cudney 4, Chloe Narolski, Ashley Huffine.