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Panther Freshmen Defeat Tigers, Lapel; Fall to Royals
January 16, 2008 - Knightstown’s freshman basketball team completely took Hagerstown out of the contest early, rolling to an easy win over the visiting Tigers last week.
The Tigers actually took an early 3-0 lead on a three-pointer just 30 seconds into the contest. But Hagerstown didn’t hit another field goal in the first quarter and didn’t get another point until just 50 seconds were left in the period. In the meantime, the Panthers had gone on an 18-0 run to blow the game wide open.
The Panthers responded to that 3-0 deficit quickly. Cody McDowell grabbed a rebound and sent a long pass down court to Danny Ortman, who hit the fast-break layup. McDowell then converted an old-fashioned three-point play that put the Panthers up for good at 5-3.
Then it started raining Knightstown baskets. Joey Wyatt stole a Tiger pass and fed Cody Juday for two, and Juday completed another three-point play when he was fouled. Yet another steal by Wyatt and another nice food to Ortman suddenly made it a 10-3 game.
On the ensuing possession, Dillon Pugsley drilled a three-pointer and the Panthers had erased the three-point deficit and were ahead by 10 in just a three-minute span. A rebound basket by Juday was followed by a trey from Wyatt, pushing the Panther lead to 18-3.
Hagerstown stopped the scoring run by hitting a free throw after a technical foul on Knightstown. Another bucket by the Tigers made it 18-6, but the Panthers again went on another run by scoring seven straight points. Brandon Carrender fed the ball to McDowell for an inside two, and a steal by Ortman set Nolan Hall up for a pair of free throws when he was fouled hard going to the basket. A rebound basket by McDowell was followed by a three-pointer by Kamron Beavers that gave the Panthers a commanding 28-9 halftime lead. The game was never in doubt from that point on.
The freshmen Panthers came roaring out of the gates early against the Bulldogs, cruising to a 17-4 first quarter lead. They kept the pressure on and increased that to 31-11 at the half, and then steadily played their way to the 42-point victory over Lapel.
Knightstown had enough points to eventually win this game at the midway point of the second quarter. Hall, Pugsley and Beavers all drilled first quarter three-pointers as the Panthers came out smoking hot. Ortman and McDowell scored four points each in the opening frame as well.
Five players hit field goals in the second quarter and the rout was on. Carrender hit for four points, while Ortman and Pugsley nailed treys from downtown. Wes Hammer and McDowell also hit as the Panthers outscored Lapel 14-7 in the second quarter to lead by 20 at the break.
Six players scored in both the third and fourth frames. By the time the third quarter ended it was 49-17.
All nine roster members saw significant playing time and put points on the board for Coach Darren Haines. Ortman and Pugsley finished with 11 points apiece, while McDowell also hit double figures with 10 markers. Hall scored nine, Carrender had seven, Beavers had five, Hammer and Cody Juday four apiece and Joey Wyatt had two.
Carrender and Wyatt both passed out four assists to lead the team. McDowell also had six rebounds and two steals. Juday had four boards and three steals, while Pugsley added three steals and three rebounds.
The freshman Panthers fell behind early to the Royals and could never recover, losing 47-38. The Royals bolted out to a 15-9 first quarter lead and increased that slightly to 26-19 at the half.
A slow third quarter ended with the score 32-24, and both teams were finally able to open up the offense in the fourth period. The Royals hit seven clutch free throws in the final frame to secure the win.
McDowell led the Panthers with eight points and had two rebounds. Wyatt and Beavers scored seven apiece, and Wyatt led the team with three assists. Ortman scored six points, Hall had five, Hammer had two and Pugsley scored one.
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