The Fredericktown Blackcats and Central Rebels played their third close game of the season, Friday night.
The final score, 53-42 in favor of the Rebels, belied the competitiveness of the game. Two previous match-ups between the teams resulted in an overtime victory and another four-point triumph for Central.
This one saw the Blackcats lead 12-10 after the first quarter. In the second quarter, Central tied the game at 18-18, before Fredericktown scored seven straight points. The Cats led 27-20, when Alex Branum hit a basket at the buzzer, giving him 14 for the half.
Central’s Drew Skaggs scored three straight baskets to start the third quarter. He scored again, midway through the period, to give the Rebels a 30-29 lead. Fredericktown scored five straight points to regain the lead, but Central got back to baskets at the end of the period.
The fourth quarter started with the teams tied at 34-34. Jeremy Gremminger made a basket and two free throws midway through the period to tie the game, again, at 40-40. From there, the Rebels out scored the Cats 13-2 in the final four minutes to win the game.
Branum led the Cats with 14 points. Gremminger scored 12, Justin Sawyer had six, Nick Oertel and Tyler Helm each scored four, and Jake Korokis had two.