EDWARDSVILLE — The O'Fallon Panthers got off to a hot start, but senior Tre' Harris and the Edwardsville Tigers eventually warmed up.
Harris scored a career-high 32 points in leading the Tigers past the Panthers 75-61 Friday night in a Southwestern Conference game.
Harris made only two of his first six shots, but he went 8-for-11 after that.
"In warm-ups, I was feeling really good, but I came out in the first half and I wasn't hitting anything. I was struggling a little bit," Harris said. "I came in at halftime and kind of gathered my thoughts. In the second half, I knocked some shots down and guys started feeding me the ball."
Harris' previous high-point game was a 30-point effort against Belleville West earlier this season.
"This feels great," Harris said. "It's always great to score 30 points, but I don't think about it too much. I do what I have to do for the team to win."
The Panthers jumped out to a 21-11 lead by pounding the ball inside to 6-foot-6 Charlie Harmon.
The Tigers responded with nine unanswered points in sparking an 18-3 run that put them in charge.
"I thought we really did a good job of adjusting on defense as the game went on," Edwardsville coach Mike Waldo said. "We have some really intelligent guys who work at it, and they made some real good adjustments defensively. I thought Armon Fletcher and Tre' did an excellent job against (Harmon) after he hurt us early."
The Tigers (13-1, 5-1), who won their eighth straight game, also got 13 points from both Shawn Roundtree and Fletcher and nine points from Garet Covington.
The Panthers (4-10, 0-6) suffered their ninth loss in their last 10 games.
Sophomore Parker Roustio was the top scorer for the Panthers with 19 points. Roustio connected on four his seven 3-point attempts before fouling out with 3:53 left in the game.
Sophomore Donovan Franklin added 17 points and Harmon had 11 points, all in the first quarter.
Harmon didn't have a shot attempt the rest of the game.
"We thought there were some things that we saw that we could do against them, and it worked for a while," O'Fallon coach Rick Gibson said. "The things that we had been practicing this week paid off, but they're a good team and they made a couple of adjustments and kind of took away the things we were getting early."
The Tigers cut their deficit to 21-15 on a rebound basket by Covington at the buzzer ending the first quarter.
Edwardsville took the lead on a 3-pointer by Roundtree with 4:44 left in the second quarter.
A steal and a layup by Covington put the Tigers ahead 29-24, and they would take a 34-27 lead into halftime.
The Panthers were 1-for-7 shooting in the second quarter after going 9-for-12 in the first quarter.
"That second quarter was the story of the game," Gibson said. "I'm real happy with the first, third and fourth quarter. We have to be able to put four quarters together, and I thought we put about 3 1/2 together today."
Harris hit two 3-pointers in the third quarter in helping the Tigers open up 47-34 advantage.
The Panthers drew within nine points in the fourth quarter, but they could get no closer.
Harris scored on a layup where he switched the ball from one hand to the other by going around his back in giving the Tigers a 68-52 cushion with about two minutes to go.
"They have so many good players, it's kind of pick your poison," Gibson said of Harris. "We focused a little more tonight on trying to stop a couple of their other shooters, and we did a good job on those guys.
"When you have as many weapons as they have, it's hard to stop every single one of them."
Contact reporter Steve Korte at firstname.lastname@example.org or 239-2522.