LEON — Class 1A top-ranked Bedford came to town on Friday, and the Central Decatur girls basketball team delivered the first dent in the Bulldogs’ armor with a 57-49 win, becoming the first team to knock off Bedford this year.
Central Decatur improved to 15-3 overall for the season and 12-1 in the Pride of Iowa Conference, while Bedford falls to 17-1 and 13-1 in the POI, placing the two teams in a tie for first place in the conference.
Bedford held a 10-9 lead after the first quarter, but Central Decatur used a 14-10 second quarter to take a 23-20 lead into halftime.
Coming out of the halftime break, the Cardinals took control of the game, thanks to a 16-4 third quarter.
Bedford tried to rally in the fourth quarter, and cut into the Central Decatur lead, but it was too much as the Cardinals held on for the 57-49 win.
“Our team played our best game of the season,” Central Decatur head coach Curtis Boothe said. “I felt our intensity on defense was solid throughout the night. It was a game everyone enjoys playing because we were facing a very good team. The crowd was loud throughout the night and kept us going all the way to the final buzzer.”
Hallie Linhart led the Cardinals with 10 points and 13 rebounds, to go along with four assists and four steals.
Sophomore Lydia Martin came off the bench and shot a perfect 7-of-7 from the field, including 3-of-3 from behind the 3-point arc to score 19 points for Central Decatur.
Senior Sadie Greene added 10 points with five assists and two steals. Desi Gentry netted four points. Brittany Binning dished out three assists in the win.
Peyton Russell led the Bulldogs with 19 points on 9-of-11 shooting, but was the only Bedford player to reach double figures for the game.
Bedford shot just 1-of-11 from behind the 3-point line, compared to 8-of-18 shooting on 3-pointers by Central Decatur.
Both teams have three conference games remaining on the schedule.
Central Decatur has Martensdale-St. Marys and Corning at home before traveling to Wayne to end the season.
Bedford hosts East Union, travels to Wayne and hosts Nodaway Valley in the season finale. The Bulldogs held on for a 44-43 win over the Wolverines in Greenfield back on Dec. 18.