Panthers boys.JPG

Senior Jordan Clark attempts to shoot a basket during the 56-39 victory against Dallas.

Itemizer-Observer

DALLAS — The Central High School boys basketball team ended its season on Monday with a 56-39 victory at Dallas High School.

It’s been a long season for the Panthers (4-20 overall, 3-13 Mid-Willamette Conference), one that contained considerable growing pains, said head coach Tim Kreta.

He knew going into the season, it would be just that: A season of growth.

“Our expectation was to come out and coach these guys as best we could,” Kreta said. “We tried to make sure that we put kids in positions to be successful, and if they made mistakes, allow them to fail with the purpose of being able to get up again. That’s what education is. We’re trying to teach young men through the game of basketball. You know, everybody wants the W — let’s be realistic, let’s teach life through the game and we’ll get a couple of W’s along the way if we do things right like we did tonight.”

He was happy to end the season on a victorious note.

“It was a whole team effort,” Kreta said. “I’m proud of the way the guys competed. It’s fun when the whole team competes, because then everyone gets to be a part of it. Getting a chance to have Jordan (Clark) get in there and have Brandon Broadus on the floor as our two seniors — not everyone gets to end the season with a win. We beat Dallas twice, and we got to end our season with a W.”

This may not have been a winning season, but it set up a foundation for the next several years.

“We’re going to take the next couple weeks here to recharge, rest, and then we’ve got work to do.”

The game started off sluggish, shooting 25 percent, and 30 percent from the freethrow line. At halftime, the Dragons (4-19, 1-19 MWC) held the lead 17-15, but the Panthers came out of the locker rooms with a different energy and quickly took control of the game, ending the third quarter up 38-25.

“Everyone was on the same page tonight — I mean, not to start off with, but in the second half we put it together, and competed hard,” said senior Brandon Broadus.

His dreams of going to playoffs didn’t come to fruition this year.

“That’s always the plan, going to playoffs, so I mean, it’s a little disappointing,” he said. “But I still really enjoyed the season, playing with these guys. We have a lot of experience from this year to build off of.”

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