The Warren Central boys’ basketball team used a hot start to roll past District 14 rival Bowling Green 91-69 on Tuesday at Warren Central High School.

Warren Central (10-1 overall, 1-0 District 14) hit 11 3-pointers in the first half to take command and cruised to its largest margin of victory in the series since an 87-52 win on Jan. 26, 2007.

“We made a lot of shots in the first half,” Warren Central coach William Unseld said. “We are going to be hard to beat when we shoot it like that – which any team will be. We shot well, but in the first three quarters we guarded. We really guarded well for three quarters. We were active and we were rebounding. It’s a good win for us.

“... We’ve still got some growing to do, but I was happy with them. They performed well – beat a really good basketball team. This showed how good we really are.”

Warren Central entered No. 1 in the latest Daily News Area Top 10 and No. 10 in the latest AP statewide poll, while Bowling Green entered second in the Daily News poll and ninth in the AP poll.

The Dragons got off to a quick start, scoring the first seven points. Warren Central finished 7-for-9 from 3-point range in the first quarter, with Chappelle Whitney’s trey at the buzzer giving the Dragons a 33-12 lead after one.

Bowling Green (10-3, 1-1) got the deficit down to 42-29 before the Dragons ended the first half with a 13-0 run to essentially put the game away.

“Basketball is a game of runs and great teams handle runs,” Unseld said. “We played Bryan Station, got up 21 and they tied it up. We went up 20 again. We have been in some really good games, so we didn’t worry. We didn’t panic.”

Warren Central finished 11-for-16 from 3-point range in the first half, with Whitney going 7-for-9 from long distance in the half.

“I’ve been in this rivalry 15-16 years and I’ve played some really good Warren Central basketball teams,” Bowling Green coach D.G. Sherrill said. “This is a good Warren Central basketball team. I probably haven’t seen them shoot it that well since the Joe Hood days. They have shot it well before, but come on, they hit 10 or 11 in the first half. Not to take anything away from them, they hit them, but that is uncharacteristic for anybody to shoot it that well.”

Warren Central led by as much as 30 points in the second half, with Bowling Green making a late run in the final minutes to get it down to the final margin.

Whitney led the way for the Dragons with 29 points, 27 in the first half. Jaiden Lawrence had 17 points, while Omari Glover added 13 points. Malik Jefferson had 12 points off the bench, while Damarion Walkup finished with 10 points.

“We are trying to be No. 1 in the district, the region, the state, so it’s a big win,” Whitney said.

Turner Buttry led Bowling Green with 20 points, while Curtis Lin added 14 points.

“No excuse, but I thought this was the first time this season that we showed a little bit of our inexperience,” Sherrill said. “You can tell young guys about the intensity of this rivalry. You can try to prepare them for the intensity of this rivalry, but until you go through this game it has to teach you and prepare you for what this rivalry is.

“... It’s Jan. 4. This game does not define our season. We’ve got a good basketball team. I wouldn’t trade locker rooms. I love my guys. I’ve got to do a better job of preparing my guys and we will do that.”

Warren Central will play at South Warren at 7 p.m. Friday. Bowling Green will host University Heights at 7 p.m. Friday.

BGHS 12 17 13 27 – 69

WCHS 33 22 15 21 – 91

BG – Buttry 20, Lin 14, E. Starks 8, Ritter 8, Bailey 7, Wardlow 6, Gurley 4, D. Starks 2.

WC – Whitney 29, Lawrence 17, Glover 13, Jefferson 12, Walkup 10, Unseld 8, Farley 2.{&end}

– Follow prep sports reporter Micheal Compton on Twitter @mcompton428 or visit bgdailynews.com.

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