There were four lead changes, and the game was tied four times before the Wildcats exploded for a big fourth quarter and pulled away for a 58-43 win in the West Michigan Conference.
“I am very happy that we came out in the second half with better intensity on both ends of the floor,” Montague head coach David Osborne said. “Mason County wanted it more, and out worked us in the first half.”
Mason County Central’s biggest lead was seven points, while the Wildcats led by 16 before the final 15-point margin. The Spartans had a 7-0 streak during the game, while Montague scored nine in a row at one point.
“We got off to a nice start, but Montague’s strength and solid play took over in the second half,” Spartans head coach Tim Genson said.
The Spartans had the upper hand early, finishing the first quarter with an 11-9 lead, but the Wildcats came back with a 22-14 edge in the second and headed into the locker room leading by six 31-25 at halftime.
Montague took control in the second half, outscoring the Spartans, 16-8 in the third period and extended its lead to 14 points 47-33 going into the final period. The Wildcats outscored the Spartans in, 20-10 in the final period.
Tate Stine led the Wildcats with 20 points on 8 of 16 shooting from the field, including 2 of 8 from the 3-point line. He also dished out six assists.
Owen Raeth and Rodney Brassfield also scored in double figures with 10 points apiece. Isaiah Archison was the team leader with 13 rebounds and scored eight points, Tugg Nichols gathered in six boards and also had three assists to go with four points.
Jayden Berrone led the Spartans with 12 points and Will Chye contributed 10 while Kolden Myer chipped in with five points and eight rebounds.
The Wildcats improved to 2-0 overall and 2-0 in the WMC, and will next play at home against Comstock Park on Tuesday, Dec. 21.