Prep Boys Basketball

Monroe City breezes into district championship game

By Herald-Whig
Posted: Feb. 22, 2019 7:40 am Updated: Feb. 22, 2019 7:53 am

CENTRALIA, Mo. -- Just how well did things go for the Monroe City boys basketball team Thursday night?

Even the miscues ended up going right.

Monroe City senior guard Blake Hays threw up a lob pass from the right wing that was intended to be an alley-oop dunk for guard C.E. Talton on the Panthers' first possession of the third quarter. The pass, however, was a little behind Talton, but he still managed to haul it in for a layin.

Both Talton and Hays took blame for the play not running like it should.

"It was definitely on me," Talton said. "I just couldn't jump tonight."

"I think I threw it a little short," Hays said. "But we still got the two points."

Dunk or not, top-seeded Monroe City cruised to a 76-37 victory over fifth-seeded Hallsville in the Class 3 District 13 semifinals, and will play third-seeded Centralia in Saturday's championship game.

"That's what matters the most," Monroe City coach Brock Edris said. "They play with a ton of energy and they really got after it tonight."

That was evident from the tip.

Monroe City (23-4) scored on five of its first six possessions and the game's first 10 points before Hallsville finally got on the board with a layup by B.J. Fisher with 5 minutes, 20 seconds remaining in the quarter.

Monroe City answered with another six points, capped off by Antwuan Battle's 3-pointer from the top of the key, to make it 16-2 with 4:05 left in the opening quarter. The Panthers led 24-7 after the first eight minutes, and the lead was never fewer than 16 points the rest of the way.

Hallsville (11-12) committed 10 turnovers in the first quarter, and 23 for the game.

"I think pressuring them in the fullcourt and forcing them to the sideline allowed us to get traps," Hays said. "We were eventually able to get steals and layups out of that."

When they weren't getting easy looks inside, they found them from the perimeter.

Hays hit a corner 3-pointer for a 5-0 lead, which started Monroe City's barrage from beyond the arc. The Panthers knocked down 11 treys as Logan Buhlig each made three of them. Buhlig finished with 12 points, while Hays had 10.

The Panthers had nine different players score.

"Hays got into a rhythm and so did Buhlig," Edris said. "A lot of different guys contributed for us."

Talton's layin off the lob pass was part of a 12-2 run to start the third quarter to make it 55-25 with 4:48 remaining. Talton finished with a game-high 23 points.

 

Monroe City 76, Hallsville 37

HALLSVILLE (11-12)

George 1 0-0 2, Loyd 3 2-4 9, Hobbs 1 0-1 2, Forge 0 1-2 1, Whipple 0 0-0 0, Cook 1 2-2 4, Dixon 1 2-4 4, Brammann 0 0-0 0, Crane 1 1-1 3, Fisher 3 3-4 9, Durk 0 0-2 0, Salas 0 0-2 0, Roberts 0 0-2 0. Totals 11 13-24 37.

MONROE CITY (23-4)

Josi Talton 0 0-0 0, C. Talton 9 4-7 23, Hays 3 1-2 10, Osborn 0 2-4 2, Battle 1 0-2 3, Josh Talton 1 0-0 3, Lehenbauer 1 0-1 3, Kendrick 0 0-0 0, Buhlig 4 1-3 12, Stark 0 0-0 0, McAfee 4 0-0 8, Underhill 0 0-0 0, St. Clair 0 0-0 0, Murphy 2 0-0 5. Totals 28 9-20 76.

Hallsville 7 14 13 3--37

Monroe City 24 19 23 10--76

3-point field goals--Hallsville 3 (Loyd 2, George), Monroe City 11 (Hays 3, Buhlig 3, C. Talton, Lehenbauer, Josh Talton, Battle, Murphy). Fouls--Hallsville 18, Monroe City 20. Fouled out--None.