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The game had everything that was predicted; scoring from all over the court from the likes of Rapid City Central's Kailleb Walton-Blanden and Dylan Hay, and Dawson Geuke and Connor Crane from Sturgis.

Add Central's Cameron Hall to the list.

Hall scored all 14 of his points in a dynamic shooting stretch from the outside in the fourth quarter, and the unbeaten Cobblers stayed that way with a 69-52 win over the Scoopers Thursday night at Naasz Gymnasium.

In a highly anticipated matchup between two regional rivals, it didn't disappoint as both teams took turns dominating the game. The Scoopers led by eight in the first quarter before the Cobblers bounced back for a four-point halftime lead.

Central then appeared to take control, leading by as much 16 late in the third before the Scoopers cut the lead to four in the fourth.

But Hall, along with Walton-Blanden's three dunks, enabled the Cobblers to close on a 24-8 run to get the big win.

Hall, who is averaging around 10 points a game, waited until the fourth period to get going, hitting four straight 3-pointers that stretched the lead for Central.

"I got the ball and I felt like I needed to do more, and I just needed to shoot my shot," Hall said. "I wasn't putting my shots in, in the beginning of the game, so I decided I needed to help my team and put my shots in."

When a shooter gets hot, he wants the basketball. Hall wanted the basketball and credited his teammates for finding him.

"They were looking out for me; we're all looking out for each other," he said. "I was just in the right spot at the right time. My teammates are good passers and they just got me the ball."

Central coach T.J. Hay said Hall has been doing this all year, just not all at once.

"He had some good looks in the first half, and in the third he missed a couple of shots," he said. "But when he made that first one, I could see by the smile on his face that he wanted to shoot another one.

"The thing about Cameron is everybody is going to look at his 14 points, but I don't know how many tips and steals that turned into dunks and layups on the other end; he is the one who got the tip or steal that led to other things."

Walton-Blanden, meanwhile, was Walton-Blanden. After just a 3-pointer in the first period, he went to work, scoring 12 points in the second and 10 more in the third and fourth for a team-high 25 points.

"In the fourth quarter we defended well and Cameron hit a couple of shots that got everybody all hyped up and it gave us a lot of energy," Walton-Blanden said.

Hay, who had 10 points in the first half, including a layup on the opening tip, finished with 18 points. Elijah Williams added 10 points underneath for the Cobblers.

"If we can get three or four players in double figures, we will be hard to stop," Walton-Blanden said.

Geuke led all scorers for the Scoopers, 7-2, with 26 points, including five 3-pointers. He scored nine points in a 12-0 run late in the third and early in the fourth that brought the Sturgis back within 45-41.

"I thought we left Geuke open too much," T.J. Hay said. "Several times coming off screens we didn't do a very good job of helping out those. It's like we always say, there are some things we have to get better at; we just have to do that."

Crane finished with 14 points for the Scoopers, who will host Rapid City Stevens tonight.

Central will be at Gillette, Wyo., tonight to take on Campbell County High School.

Central girls hold off Scoopers

The Rapid City Central girls' basketball team picked a good time to find its shooting touch from the outside.

Like in the fourth quarter.

The Cobblers hit four 3-pointers in the fourth after not hitting any in the first three quarters and held on to stop the Scoopers 45-40 Thursday night at Naasz Gymnasium.

"Tonight was a struggle," Central coach Kraig Blomme said. "I kept saying on the bench that I was not sure if we made two baskets in-a-row the whole night. But the kids really played hard down the stretch and did what they needed to do to win the game."

The two teams took turns dominating the first half, with the Cobblers leading 18-7 at the end if one and the Scoopers up 25-24 at halftime.

Central led 31-29 heading to the fourth when the Cobblers found their outside touch.

Central got 3-pointers from Whitley Heitsch and Abby Freeman to break a 31-31 tie, before Bailey Johnson and Freeman again connected from downtown to put the Cobblers up 43-36.

Sturgis battled back and got baskets from Brook Janz and Loralee Stock to make it a 43-40 game with 24 seconds remaining, but could get no closer.

"The second half was back-and-forth and Sturgis did a lot of good things," Blomme said. "I was proud of the way my girls played defense and worked hard on the boards for being a little undersized. It was a tough ballgame."

Heitsch led the Cobblers with 15 points, followed by Johnson with 12 points and Juneau Jones with nine. Central, 5-5, is at Gillette tonight.

Sturgis was struggling after losing to Custer Saturday. Scooper coach Jordan Proefrock said they had a good week of practice and they were well prepared.

She said it just came down to making shots.

"Unfortunately, they (Central) made a few more than we did," Proefrock said. "I thought defensively we switched things up and we got some nice layups out of that."

Janz led the Scoopers with 14 points, followed by Stock with 10. The Scoopers, 3-6, will host Stevens tonight.

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Sports Editor

Sports reporter for the Rapid City Journal.