Burlington Central gets past Byron

By Allen Oshinski
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 12/4/2015 9:28 PM

BYRON -- Burlington Central's defense did quite a turnaround. After allowing Byron 22 first-quarter points, the Rockets clamped down and allowed just 20 more the rest of the game. Meanwhile, the Rocket shooters finally got hot as Central pulled away for a 56-42 win in a Big Northern girls basketball crossover Friday night.

The Class 3A No. 3-ranked Rockets took control with a 20-0 run spanning the third and fourth quarters.


Sam Pryor scored 13 of her game-high 18 points in the second half and pulled down 9 rebounds. Shelby Holt hit three 3-pointers and finished with 14 points, pushing her career total to 973. Kayla Ross and Rebecca Gerke added 12 and 10 points, respectively for Burlington Central (4-0).

The Tigers raced out to an early 18-8 lead, with a little help from the Rockets. Eight of those points came on free throws.

"We got caught a little flat-footed there in the beginning," said Central coach Mark Smith. "The first four trips down the floor they were at the free-throw line. That's one of the things we emphasize is don't foul. You want to play aggressively but you can't foul, but really the second, third, and midway through the fourth quarters we had given up 10 points."

For the game, the Tigers got more than half their points from the free-throw line, making 22 of 27.

Byron led 27-18 midway through the second, but then the tide began to turn. A 3-pointer by Pryor started an 8-0 run to close the half and get the Rockets within a point.

The teams traded baskets to start the second half, with Byron going up 33-30. Then Pryor and the Rockets took over. Pryor converted an old-fashioned 3-point play to tie it, then scored on a putback to put Central ahead to stay.

The Tigers didn't score again until Central led 50-33. Pryor (11) and Holt (7) accounted for all but 2 of the Rockets' points during the run.

Lexi DeVries and Bailey Burrows each scored 13 points for Byron, with 11 of Burrows' points coming from the free-throw line.

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