By Anvil Welch
Globe Sports Writer
Webb City’s boys, a week ago, probably never considered that tonight’s game with visiting Republic would have a bounce-back aura about it.
Blame Nevada, of course, as the Tigers built a big lead and held off the visiting Cardinals 67-65 on Tuesday night.
Webb City’s furious rally — 27-11 in the final period — couldn’t deny Nevada. The loss snapped a nine-game winning streak.
“Nevada played extremely hard and executed very well,” Webb City coach Landon Cornish said. “Silas (Smith) and Nathan (Colopy) had outstanding games (with 28 and 20 points, respectively).”
Actually little has changed in regard to the stakes in tonight’s game at Webb City. The program tips off at 6 p.m. with the junior varsity contest.
Republic, ranked No. 2 in Class 4 behind Sikeston, is 17-2 overall and 1-0 in the Central Ozark Conference Large Division. Webb City, rated ninth, is 15-4 and 1-0.
Republic has a new head coach — Trevyor Fisher replaced the retiring Gary Stanfield — and the Tigers basically have picked up where they left off. Stanfield, a success at both the prep and college level, guided the Tigers to 21 wins last season.
Said Cornish: “Republic has a lot of weapons. They’re nine deep with kids who can play.
“They can score a lot of points,” Cornish said. “They’re very efficient on offense. It all starts with their defense getting stops.
“Our guys are looking forward to the game ... especially with it being a conference game,” Cornish said. “Our guys are ready.”
Republic has lost 72-64 to Elgin (Ill.) Larkin in the Route 66 Shootout at Waynesville and 47-45 in two overtimes to Rogersville on its floor.
Probable starters for Webb City are 6-foot junior Clay Gardner, 5-9 senior Phoenix Johnson, 6-3 senior Nate Brown, 6-3 senior Kohl Slaughter and 6-5 senior John Roderique.
Scoring leaders for the Cardinals are Slaughter (15.6), Johnson (12.5), Brown (9.7) and Roderique (7).
Slaughter leads Roderique 6.9 to 3.7 in rebounding, Johnson paces the team in assists (4.7) and steals (1.9).
Brown is shooting 58 percent from the field and Johnson is at 77 percent from the foul line. Johnson and Brown have hit 17 and 11 treys, respectively.