VANDALIA -- After a day of pummeling a couple of opponents, Effingham St. Anthony needed every minute Tuesday to keep that perfect Vandalia Holiday tournament going.
The Bulldogs came back in the fourth quarter, edging by Pana 50-48 to keep the road to the championship alive.
"It was definitively a close one tonight," St. Anthony coach Cody Rincker said. "The game started off competitive. We jumped out to a little bit of a lead, up 17-10 at one point. Pana did a good job of playing hard and being aggressive."
Drew Gibson was the catalyst for St. Anthony, scoring 25 points. He didn't make a field goal in the fourth, when the Bulldogs recovered from a seven-point deficit, but he went 5 of 7 from the free throw line to slowly add to St. Anthony's total.
Cade Walsh drained a 3-pointer that helped spark the Bulldogs' fourth-quarter comeback.
"We were able to make enough plays and put enough pressure on their guards and cause enough turnovers to cut the lead down and overtake them," Rincker said.
While Gibson carried St. Anthony, Pana had four players score at least nine points and were led by Brock DeWerff's 14 points.
It's the latest win for the Bulldogs, who now are 12-1 and haven't lost since the Thanksgiving tourney when ousted by Effingham.
Warrensburg-Latham 59, Petersburg PORTA 42
WILLIAMSVILLE -- The Cardinals found the same mojo that helped them topple PORTA a couple of years ago as Warrensburg pulled an upset on the No. 3 ranked Bluejays.
Jarius Ingram couldn't be controlled as he hit three 3-pointers, made 12 of 14 from the line and finished with 29 total points to boost the Cardinals to the semifinals in the Williamsville Holiday Tournament.
Andrew Butts kept up his consistent mark of double-digit scoring, finishing with 14 points.
Warrensburg was never in any real trouble, winning each of the four quarters.
The Cardinals draw Tremont for today's semifinal game, which starts at 6 p.m.
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Mattoon drops two
EFFINGHAM/TEUTOPOLIS -- Mattoon had a tough challenge without its leading scorer Drake Jeffries
In Mattoon’s last game against Salem on Dec. 16, Jeffries tore the meniscus in his knee in the first quarter. He played through the pain in Mattoon’s win, but after consulting with a couple of physicians, it was determined he needed surgery on the knee. Jeffries, a senior, is projected to miss the rest of the season.
In the Wave's first game, Teutopolis quickly took a double-digit lead and didn’t look back in an 84-55 victory. Then against Lincoln-Way East, Mattoon was outscored 19-7 in the second quarter, which helped the Griffins gain some separation. The Griffins went on to win 73-45.
“(Lincoln-Way East) just chipped and chipped and just continued to build the lead,” Mattoon head coach Josh Forsythe said. “They never cracked. They did a good job of playing within themselves and we just didn’t create offensively. We didn’t do a good job of creating for ourselves or our teammates with the ball in our hand.”
Despite the two losses, Mattoon coach Forsythe was proud of the way his team responded.
“I didn’t know if we were going to come out and feel sorry for ourselves because we weren’t going to have Drake, or if we were going to come out with a little fire and believe we are still good enough to play with teams and pull out victories,” Forsythe said.
“I thought the guys did the latter of that. I thought they came out and punched them as hard as they could and had them on their heels. It was our turnovers and defense is what killed us."
Charleston snaps streak
EFFINGHAM/TEUTOPOLIS -- The Effingham/Teutopolis Christmas Classic is in its fourth year of existence and the first three were not kind to the Charleston boys’ basketball team.
The Trojans participated in the tournament for the first three seasons, but after 11 games, Charleston was winless at the Christmas Classic. The Trojans snapped their losing streak Tuesday.
Despite dealing with a 17-day layoff and letting a 20-point lead shrink to less than five, the Trojans came away with their first win of the Christmas Classic with a 44-35 win over Madison on Tuesday.
“It’s big. We didn’t really focus on the next game at all. We watched video on Madison and prepared for Madison because we wanted to make sure we started on a positive note,” Charleston coach Blain Mayhall said.