COUNCIL BLUFFS – Sophomore guard Cael Turner was perhaps acutely aware of the impending 5-9 inches of snow coming to Creston today, as he heated up Lewis Central’s gym with 22 points in Creston’s 58-55 loss Thursday night.
The Panthers trailed for the majority of the game, and after the first quarter Creston was down 19-13.
“I’m really proud of the way we competed tonight,” Creston head coach Bryce Schafer said. “We did a ton of things right, late game execution is what we need to clean up but I think we executed the game plan.”
Compared to the prior outing, a 50-34 loss at Denison-Schleswig, coach Schafer was more proud of the effort seen out on the hardwood.
“I was extremely disappointed with our effort last week,” Schafer said. “For them to come out and play this hard hand be this close, I feel for them.”
Derek Paup knotted the score at 23 with 3:25 remaining in the first half but Titan Cole Arnold got a quick basket in response and Lewis Central was up 25-23 at halftime.
Paup again tied the game at the charity stripe, only to have Lewis Central pull away once again to a narrow 36-34 lead after the third quarter.
Turner had 12 of his 22 points in the final quarter, and one of his 3-point baskets gave Creston a short-lived 43-41 advantage.
“In the second half, Cael was just hitting shots he had available to him, he got open looks he finished and hopefully that gives him confidence,” Schafer said.
Junior guard Kyle Strider was intentionally fouled with 7.6 seconds remaining, and after making both free throws, Creston trailed 56-55.
Lewis Central was fouled on the ensuing inbound and made both of their free throws which finalized the scoring total 58-55.
Patrick Varner’s shot on the other end was blocked by Lewis Central.
Creston next hits the hardwood Monday night against Red Oak.