SPORTS: Centralia bounces Peninsula College men from NWAACC Tournament

KENNEWICK — Centralia and All-Region guard Van Lockett bumped the Peninsula men’s basketball team from the NWAACC Tournament on Monday at the Toyota Center.

Lockett swished in 24 points as the Centralia Trailblazers came back from 12 points down in the first half to beat the Pirates 70-62 in the loser-out consolation semifinals.

Centralia weathered the early storm, coming back from the 12-point deficit to advance to the consolation final, the seventh-place trophy game today.

For much of the first period, it looked as though Peninsula was out of reach.

The Pirates went on an 11-0 run to take a 13-4 lead four minutes into the first half.

Keeping 10-point edge

Centralia cut the lead to a pair, but minutes later Xavier Bazile nailed a 3-pointer to put the Pirates up 10 with 6:29 left in the first half.

The Pirate advantage would reach 12 with less than a minute to play on a steal and layup from Gatpan Panoam, and Peninsula took a 10-point lead into the locker room at 40-30.

Centralia came out on fire in the second half, going on a 12-0 run to take a two-point lead after six minutes of play, which Peninsula answered to tie and take a lead of its own.

But Centralia came charging back behind a block and bucket from Lockett to retake the lead for the final time.

The Blazers hit their final 12 free throws down the stretch, including eight consecutive makes for Lockett, who led Centralia with the game-high 24 points, eight rebounds and six assists.

Team-leading 12 points

Donald Gaddy led three Pirates in double figures with 12 points while Bazile knocked down 11 and Aaron Clark scored 10.

Bazile also brought down a team-high eight rebounds while TreShawn King-Dunbar had seven boards and a team-high three assists.

Cold-shooting day

The Pirates shot only 37 percent from the field, making 21 of 57 shots.

Others scoring in double figures for the Blazers were Jordan Dam with 13, Zach Carras with 12 and Mozeek Waggener with 10.

Carras also had seven rebounds.

Centralia’s Miles Waggener grabbed a game-high 10 boards while John Dumetz had a game-high three steals.

Centralia will play the winner of the Pierce-Yakima Valley game today at 10 a.m. for the seventh-place trophy.

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