Central High Basketball in Homestretch

At 17-5, the Central Wildcat basketball team is well on its way to the State 5A Playoffs — if all goes as expected!  Right now, they are ranked 8th to 10th in the state based on power ratings.

However, the Wildcats are in the midst of “murderers row” — three games that will severely test their abilities.

The first was Monday night’s game against Scotlandville, which is ranked No. 1 in Division I statewide.  That was no contest, as the Hornets ran away with it.

Next up is the Walker Wildcats, a 4-5A rival that is ranked in the top five teams in the state. That game will be at 7 p.m. Friday, February 12.

The third game is against another District 4-5A rival, the Zachary Broncos, who are ranked No. 1 in 5A statewide. That game is at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 16.

The Central City News will broadcast both the Walker and Zachary games live at Central City News on Facebook.

Central High head basketball coach Sid Edwards is pleased with the Wildcats’ performance thus far. “I knew we had talent this year, but it’s been enhanced by Gage Evans, who stepped up from football. He plays his heart out.  Tommy Zheng has been a good addition.  Meanwhile, Cameron Young is our secret weapon.”

Coach Sid says the most improved player is his 7-footer Ethaniel Rizan. “From June to now, he has made great strides. If a college will give him a chance and work with him, they will be rewarded. He makes a big contribution now, but his future is in college ball.”

Central is a fast paced team that tries to wear their opponents down. They use the full court and substitute in and out with 10 players.

Coach Sid’s philosophy on substitution is different from most coaches. “I feel if I give you a jersey, you’re good enough to play. This year we use 10 players. There are some younger kids who may not play as much but that’s because they are also on the JV team and get to play there.”

Where do the Wildcats go from here? If they win either Walker or Zachary, they will  probably stay in the 8th-10th spot for the playoffs.

ATHLETIC DIRECTOR — This year Coach Sid has served as AD, head football coach, and head basketball coach. However, earlier this week, the Central Community School Board approved a proposal to create two separate positions — AD and director of football operations.  Coach Sid will be director of football operations, and the school board will accept applications for Athletic Director.

WILL EASLEY — Like others, Coach Sid had strong feelings when he learned Will Easley was retiring. “He’s been a mentor to me. He told me he loved winning but that the most important thing is loving the kids. He’s said that on more than one occasion. I have the highest regard and respect for him.”

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