MACON -- Before the starting line-ups were announced in the
For the first half, the match-up of the Mac-Town powers looked more like a wasted pay-per-view boxing match that would only last a round or two as Northeast broke the game open to a 36-21 lead at the halftime break.
After a surge from Central in the third quarter that cut the lead from 15 to six, Northeast held on for a 69-62 win and locked up the number one seed in the 4-AAA region tournament next week.
Northeast head coach Dartez Talbott praised the balance play of his senior class, a group that only won two games as freshmen, 15 as sophomores and 19 as juniors. Thursday night's win improved the team to 20 victories on the year.
Northeast was led by unsigned senior Hugh Robertson (pictured), who scored a team high 23 points.
"We play so unselfish that anyone can play like that on any given night," Talbott said.
Robertston, an athletic 6-4 wing, was one of the biggest surprises we've seen all season. He's on the high-major radar, according to his coaches, but academic issues may force his hand to the junior college route.
The game had to be moved from Northeast to Westside to accommodate the large crowd that spilled into the aisle ways.
Central was paced by sophomore Matthew Brabham, who scored 18 points, handed out seven assists and grabbed five rebounds. Senior Curtis Barnes scored 13, 10 of which came in the huge third quarter surge.