SCOTTVILLE — After a terrible start, which saw them trail by an 11-2 score at the end of the first quarter, the Mason County Central Spartans recovered and rallied for a 41-31 victory over Manistee in a non-conference girls basketball game Tuesday night in Scottville.
It was the tipoff to the season for both teams.
The Spartans (1-0) came back from that forgettable opening eight minutes to outscore the visiting Chippewas, 13-5 in the second period and narrowed the deficit to just one, 16-15 at the halftime break.
Mason County kept rolling in the second half, finally catching and then passing the Chippewas with a 14-6 scoring advantage in the third quarter to leap frog Manistee for a 29-22 lead, and then completed the deal with a 12-9 fourth.
“We came out with a lot of nerves, for whatever reason, and we were real tight to start out,” Spartan head coach Mike Weinert said. “We didn’t change a whole lot with what we were doing.
“They (the Spartans) just changed their mindset a little bit. We cleaned some stuff up. We cleaned our fouling, and cleaned our passing up a little bit, and started playing better.”
Jaden Peterson sparked the Spartans, with a drive to the basket for a score and an and one. Then she buried back-to-back 3-point shots, and Charlie Banks hit a triple.
Banks also was effective on the offensive boards, taking rebounds back up and getting fouled, converting on several of her free throw chances.
“Then we started rolling a little bit, and everybody got involved,” Weinert said. “We got a little more focused on (Manistee’s) Libby McCarthy.
“She’s very talented, and she works hard the whole game. She works hard to get open. We tried to take her out of it a little bit. She got a few, but I thought we did a pretty job on her.
“We stuck in our man-to-man, we didn’t go zone. We just got more focused, and did a better job. We started getting down on the break a little bit more, and got through their half-court press a little better.”
Peterson’s 14 points topped the Spartans, while Banks added 12 plus 10 rebounds. Grace Weinert also had 10 rebounds, and added three points and three steals.
The Spartans tipoff the West Michigan Conference schedule Friday night at Hart.