SCOTTVILLE — McBain came into Wednesday night’s game with an honorable mention in the latest Division 3 girls basketball poll, and boasting some impressive individual talent.

But the Ramblers found themselves in a real battle with Mason County Central, which gave them all they could want before eventually topping MCC, 48-41 at Scottville in a district semifinal.

The Spartans played outstanding defense in the first quarter, and took an 8-6 lead at the buzzer.

McBain flexed its own defensive muscle, and knocked down some big shots in the second period for a 15-8 advantage and a 21-16 halftime lead.

Each team scored 11 points in the third quarter as the Spartans kept it close, 32-27 going into the fourth period. But the Spartans just couldn’t make enough shots to get over the hump, and the Comets outscored them just 16-14 in the final eight minutes.

“We played great,” Spartans coach Mike Weinert said. “We missed some puppies (layups and close-in shots). They have an All-Stater on their team, Emma Sheerbeck, that is the best player I’ve seen all year.

“The girls played very good man-to-man defensively. Sheerbeck got her points, but she earned every single one of them. We just couldn’t put it in the bucket quite enough.

“It was pretty close most of the game. They did extend it to 10 and 12 a couple of times. Then we’d get it back to four and five. It was a good game.”

Wren Nelson paced the Spartans with 12 points and hauled down 10 rebounds. Adria Quigley contributed eight points and Jaden Peterson finished with six.

It snapped a two-game winning streak for the Spartans, and closed out their season at 14-7.