Register Sports Editor
Early in the second quarter, the Lady Indians appeared ready to turn a showdown with 11th Region rival Lexington Catholic into a blowout.
A 7-0 run fueled by standout seniors Larryn Brooks and Ashton Feldhaus gave Madison Central a seemingly commanding 37-20 lead.
At halftime, the Lady Indians still had a 12-point advantage, but Catholic battled back in the second half. The Lady Knights got back within five points in the fourth quarter before free throws helped Central hang on for a 60-51 win.
Feldhaus had 25 points and eight rebounds and Brooks added 20 points, four rebounds and four assist for the Lady Indians (16-3).
“We’ve got to close out games better,” Central coach Robbie Cooksey said. “We were up by 17 points and we don’t close it out. It’s like I told them, it’s gonna come back and bite us.”
It didn’t this time.
But, it could have.
Central had a 47-33 lead at the start of the fourth quarter, but Catholic opened the period on a 7-0 run, including two three-pointers. Feldhaus hit a three-pointer to get the lead back to 10 points (50-40), still the Lady Indians couldn’t put the Lady Knights away.
A three-pointer by Bailey Browning with just about a minute left in the game cut the lead to 54-49.
“We are too good of a team to make those kind of mistakes,” Cooksey said. “We are going to let someone get close and someone is going to take advantage of it. We’ve got to stop this stuff.”
In the final minute, Central went seven-of-10 from the line, with Brooks connecting on four-of-four attempts.
The Lady Indians are scheduled to play four games this week, but all five starters never left the court against Catholic. Bailey O’Bryan had 10 points, Shadae Bosley had five points and five rebounds and Heather Hinkle did not score, but had two rebounds.
“They are used to playing a lot of minutes,” Cooksey said of his starters. “We know we have four games this week, so we are going to have to grind a little bit.”
Central shot 48 percent and limited Catholic to 33 percent shooting, including seven-of-29 from three-point range.
The Lady Knights hit six three-pointers in the second half.
Senior guard Octavia Wilson had 10 points and eight rebounds for Catholic, but was limited to four-of-18 shooting, including one-of-10 from three-point range.
“I thought we really did a good job on Wilson,” Cooksey said. “I thought Bailey and Larryn did a good job on her.”
Central is set to return to action today against Clark County at home. Game time is set for 7:30 p.m.