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 Friday Night Doubleheader Brings Back Longtime Rival Shenandoah

January 21, 2009 -  Longtime basketball rival Shenandoah invades the Panther den Friday night for the annual boys and girls basketball doubleheader, and the potential for two extremely competitive games is high.

On the girls side, Knightstown has not beaten Shenandoah this century. The Lady Raiders are 7-5 on the season, but have lost their last four games while playing an extremely tough stretch of their schedule.

The Lady Panthers, meanwhile, have been hitting a consistent stride in recent weeks, winning three straight, five of six, and seven of their last 10 games. After starting the season 2-3, Knightstown is now 9-5 on the season.

Just as in the boys game, the meeting will be the last between the two schools as members of the White River Athletic Conference. The two schools could see each other again this season in the sectional, which will be played at Knightstown this year.

The last time these two teams met, Shenandoah won 44-34 on the Lady Raiders’ court. Knightstown coach Dawn Basicker, in her eighth season, has yet to get her first win against Shenandoah, although that drought could very well end Friday night.

The Lady Panthers play at Morristown Monday, then face New Castle at home Wednesday. Their final home game of the season is Tri High next Saturday, which was postponed twice this season due to bad weather.

Pairings for the girls state tournaments will be announced on Thursday, Jan. 29.

The Panther boys are in the midst of a brutal schedule that has included the likes of New Castle, Rockville, Eastern Hancock and Lapel. Knightstown has played, and lost, to three ranked teams, including Wapahani, Lapel and Rockville. The boys are 5-5, but played their best basketball of the season against the Rox at Conseco Fieldhouse Saturday.

The Raiders are 6-4 after a 61-57 win over Muncie Burris Saturday. Shenandoah and Knightstown have both lost to Eastern Hancock this year. The Raiders fell 69-57 on Jan. 16, while the Panthers lost to the Royals 64-60 on Dec. 19.

Both teams have beaten Elwood, with the Raiders pulling out a 43-42 win and Knightstown winning 60-54. Both teams have also defeated Tri easily.

The girls and boys doubleheader against the Raiders is the only one of the schedule each season. The Lady Panthers tip off at 6 p.m. and the boys follow at 8 p.m. Knightstown’s boys then have a very difficult match Saturday night when the Class 3A Mt. Vernon Marauders come visiting. The Marauders are 7-3 this season and have won five straight games against some pretty tough competition. Victims during that winning streak included Eastern Hancock, New Palestine, Greenfield-Central, New Castle and Rushville.

This weekend’s two games will let the Panther boys know for sure how much they have improved this season or if the Rockville game was just an anomaly. After this weekend, Knightstown plays just one team with a winning record, that being Rushville (7-4) in the last game of the regular season.



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