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By Russ Green-Sports Editor
Winston’s defense shut down Hardin-Central’s big guys Saturday afternoon to leave town with a 65-48 victory in a battle of two teams in the Missouri Basketball Coaches Association top 10. The Redbirds, ranked fifth in the latest Class 1 poll, improved to 18-2 with the victory, while Hardin-Central, ranked No. 6, dropped its second game in a row to fall to 17-4.
Winston 5-10 sophomore guard Jordan Leonard slashed his way to scoring a game-high 23 points, with Craig Lewis, a 5-5 freshman guard adding 19 more points. Wyatt Craven led the Bulldog scoring with 12 points, with Clif Kugler adding 9.
Winston grabbed an 18-10 lead after the first 8 minutes and stretched that advantage to 23-10 early in the second before the Bulldogs battled back. A 13-0 run by Hardin-Central knotted the game at 23-all, but Lewis’ 3-pointer ended the surge with 1:50 remaining in the half. The Redbirds were able to take a 30-24 lead at halftime.