By Maurice Patton
COLUMBIA — Against a Station Camp team featuring five players listed at 6-3 or taller, Columbia Central was overmatched Wednesday.
The Lions fell short on the backboards and on the scoreboard, taking a 55-43 loss in their final outing of 2020.
“I bet they had 18 offensive rebounds,” Central coach Nick Campbell said after the defeat, his team’s fourth in as many contests following an 8-0 start. “People know that’s a weakness right now.
“We just got killed on the boards. We got out-physicalled. Our halfcourt defense wasn’t bad; it was just about getting a rebound.”
Combine that with an inconsistent offense – the Lions were outscored 15-2 over the final 5½ minutes of the first half to trail by 13 at intermission – and the hosts found themselves fighting uphill, unsuccessfully, over the last two quarters.
After falling behind 42-21 with 3:30 remaining in the third quarter, the Lions did manage to cut the margin to single digits behind a three-point play by freshman Jordan Davis, another by Q Martin and a Davis left corner 3-pointer at the 4:30 mark of the final period.
From 46-38, though, Station Camp got four straight baskets from Nate Meadows to retake control of the contest.
“They were patient,” Campbell said. “We got it down to eight, and then they had a possession where they … got an up-and-under from (Meadows) that broke our back.
“They’re a good team – physical, deep. They’re not going to beat themselves.”
Meadows finished with a game-high 17 points for the Bison, with 6-6 Eli Rice adding 15. Martin scored 13 and Davis 11 to lead the Lions.
Central opens District 8-AAA play Saturday in a 4 p.m. boys-only matchup against visiting Coffee County.
Station Camp boys 55, Columbia Central 43
S 9 21 14 11 – 55
C 11 6 16 10 – 43
Station Camp (55) – Isaiah Davis 7, Tyler Moore 3, Donovan Smith 1, Eli Rice 15, Grady Parsons 3, Nate Meadows 17, Kheller Dié 9
Columbia Central (43) – Cam Johnson 9, Q Martin 13, Omari Franklin 4, Roni Bailey 4, Quandrees Peete 2, Jordan Davis 11
3-pointers – Station Camp 3 (Moore, Parsons, Dié), Columbia Central 4 (Johnson 3, Davis)