Boys Varsity Basketball · Senior Night blues: Tigers jump out to quick start, Midway storms back for 68-49 win

There are some of those nights where things go your way early and fall apart quick.

That was the case for the Belton Tiger Basketball team against the Midway Panthers Tuesday night at Tiger Gym.

The program celebrated Senior Night, as Tyson Pine, Diego Santana, and Josh Rardin were celebrated by their families and friends.

The Tigers jetted out to an eight-point lead in the first four minutes. However, Midway stormed back with an 11-0 run to end the first quarter and kept hammering away, as the Panthers defeated the Tigers, 67-48.

Ben Jones hit a three-pointer 16 seconds into the ballgame. After a field goal by Godsgift Eedinma, Tyson Pine hit consecutive three-pointers to put the Tigers up 9-2 with 5:45 to go in the first quarter.

Jordan Simmons and Eedinma hit field goals within 28 seconds to cut the Belton lead to three points. Luke Bramlett hit Pine cutting into the lane for a field goal. Jones hit a three-pointer with 4:08 to play to give the Tigers an eight-point lead, 14-6.

Anthon Scott scored nine of Midway’s final 11 points of the quarter, with Simmons scoring the other field goal. The Panthers led the Tigers after the first eight minutes, 17-14.

T.J. Johnson clipped the margin to one point with a field goal 90 seconds into the second quarter. Midway answered with a 16-4 run over the final 5:40 of the first half to take a 13-point lead at the halftime break, 33-20.

Belton went on an 8-2 over the first 91 seconds of the third quarter, as Johnson, Pine and Santana scored points. The Tigers trailed by seven points, 35-28.

Simmons scored a bucket at the 6:02 mark that sparked a 19-8 streak to end the third quarter, as Midway led 54-36.

Simmons and Jones traded three-pointers to start the fourth quarter before ran off a 10-0 run to take a 67-39 lead with 4:10 to play in the game.

Belton closed the game on a 10-1 run of their own, as Santana’s two three-pointers were sandwiched around a pair of punishing layups by Itty Henry.

Simmons led all scorers with 26 points for Midway. Scott added 21 for the Panthers.

Pine led the Tigers with 13 points. Santana scored 11 pointers, and Ben Jones added nine points.

The Tigers dropped to 21-13 overall, and 5-9 in District 12-6A. Although they are out of the playoffs, Belton Head Coach Jason Fossett sees the constant improvement in his team that is decimated by injuries.

“We’re improving every game,” Fossett said. “Last year, we won 12 games. Last year, we won four district games, and we have won five this year with a couple of more to go.”

The Tigers head out on the road for the final two games of the season, as they travel to Copperas Cove on Friday night and Harker Heights next Tuesday.