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 JV Boys Whip Bulldogs 38-29

January 16, 2008 - Knightstown’s junior varsity boys basketball team overcame a disastrous second quarter with an outright dominating performance in the third frame, shutting down Centerville and taking a 38-29 victory.

The young Panthers were outscored 8-3 in the second quarter and trailed 20-16 at halftime. But Coach Justin Linch’s kids held the Bulldogs to without a point in the third quarter and went on an 18-0 run. Centerville scored just before the halftime buzzer on a tip-in, and didn’t get another point until just 1:40 remained in the game, a stretch of more than 10 minutes.

The Panthers went from being down 20-16 to leading 34-20 before the smoke began to clear.

Knightstown started out horribly in this game, also getting off to a bad start in the opening minutes. Centerville opened up a 7-0 lead just two minutes into the contest when the Panthers missed their first four shots and the bulldogs hit three straight. After a trey by Colby Lane put Knightstown on the board, the Bulldogs increased their lead to 9-3.

That’s when the Panthers went on their first run of 10-2. Jordan Hauk hit two free throws and Lane drilled another three-pointer. Lane scored again, and Joey Wyatt hit Chris Mefford with a nice pass inside. Mefford was fouled and completed the three-point play, putting the Panthers ahead 13-12 at the first stop. Lane scored all eight of his points in that opening quarter.

With both teams playing extremely aggressive defense, the officials made them pay with the whistles. Fifteen fouls were called in the game’s first seven minutes. Knightstown managed just one field goal in the second quarter on a bucket by Lane Fields that upped the lead to 15-12. A Travis Titus free throw made in 16-14 before the Bulldogs responded with six points in the last two minutes to lead at the half 20-16.

That’s when the Panthers completely shut down the Bulldogs and took control of the game with an intense press the Bulldogs could not answer. Lucas Hochstedler scored on a nice inlet pass from Drew Martin, and Titus followed that with a trey that put the Panthers up 21-20. They would never trail again.

Knightstown forced turnovers on five straight Bulldog possessions, and Lane hit Fields for an easy two inside. Anthony Forshey scored underneath just before the third quarter horn sounded, giving the Panthers a 25-20 lead. The third quarter run was 9-0, and although the Panthers hit just four-of-11 field goals, they forced seven turnovers while committing just one.

Titus opened the fourth quarter with a steal and layup, and Mefford followed that with a bucket inside. Following a free throw by Hauk, Titus took his man to the hoop and scored. Suddenly, it was 32-20 and the Bulldogs were cooked.

Martin came up with a steal, and a return pass gave him two more inside on a nice move. The run had increased to 18-0 and the lead was 14 points at 34-20.

Titus and Hauk both hit free throw as the Bulldogs fouled in an attempt to get back into the game. The Panthers hit five-of-six freebies in the final quarter. Centerville hit a trey at the gun to cut the final margin to nine points.

Titus scored 10 points and had four steals in a superb all-around game that would earn him varsity minutes later that night. Lane scored eight points, while Mefford and Hauk both added five. Fields scored four, while Martin, Hochstedler and Forshey each added two.

The Panthers had just nine turnovers in the game, compared to 19 for Centerville. Most of those were forced by an aggressive full-court press.

The junior varsity boys will play a double-header tonight (Wednesday) with the girls against Shenandoah. The girls’ tip-off at 6 and the boys follow at 7:30.


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