After a back-and-forth contest for the first three quarters, it only seemed logical that the boys high school basketball game between Sumter and Lee Central on Tuesday would go down to the wire.
Nope, it did not happen.
LC outscored the Gamecocks 25-11 in the final stanza to pull away for a 63-52 victory at the SHS gymnasium.
The loss dropped Sumter to 3-1 on the season, while the Stallions improved to 3-4.
The Gamecocks, ranked fifth in the 5A preseason poll by the South Carolina Basketball Coaches Association, led 41-38 entering the fourth quarter. However, Lee Central, ranked fifth in 2A, took control of the game as SHS could not buy a bucket.
LC opened a 47-43 lead on a pair of free throws JoCuras McCloud. Calvin Felder followed up a miss to bring Sumter back within two only have Demarcus Smith get loose for a layup to make it 49-45 with 4:24 remaining in the contest.
That was followed by a sequence that turned the game in the Stallions' favor. The much taller Gamecocks pounded the glass after a miss, getting at least five more tips from point-blank range. They was unable to get one to fall though.
That resulted with Shykeem Cooper getting loose for a layup to push the lead to 51-45. SHS did manage a free throw to cut the lead to five, but buckets by Torian Wilson and McCloud built the lead to 55-46 with 2:44 left.
Sumter never got closer than seven the rest of the way.
Wilson led a balanced Lee Central attack with 13 points. Javonte McCloud had nine, Smith 8, JoCuras McCloud and Daveon Thomas both had seven and Deandre Oliver had six.
Cooper had 15 rebounds to go with four points.
Sumter, which led 15-14 after one quarter before trailing 29-28 at halftime, was led by Felder with 19. Isiah Moore added 12 and Tyree Smalls had eight.
In the girls game, Sumter improved to 3-1 with a 64-25 victory. Three players reached double figures for the Lady Gamecocks, led by Tamerah Brown with 16. Nina Edlow had 13 and Layken Cox had 12.
Robionne Myers led the 0-4 Lady Stallions with 11 points.