Centralia had a chance to take over in the third quarter but ran into a scoring slump as Shelton handed the Tigers a 60-47 defeat here on Tuesday in 2A Evergreen Conference play.
Junior Jayden Pannette led the Tigers with 14 points, while junior Landon Kaut added 11 points, eight blocks and a team-high six rebounds and Brandon Yeung chipped in 11 points.
“We got off to a slow start and were flat footed,” Centralia coach Kyle Donahue said. “Shelton came out, pushed the ball down the court and we dug ourselves a hole.”
The Tigers trailed by 10 at the half then cut the lead to four at 42-38 in the third quarter, but couldn’t get any closer as the Highclimbers busted off a run of their own to put the game away.
“I thought we were going to make a run and pull ahead, but then we couldn’t make any shots,” Donahue said.
Centralia (3-6, 3-6 league) travels to Chehalis to take on W.F. West in round two of the 2021 Swamp Cup at 4 p.m. Wednesday.