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The Eminence Warriors entered the Panthers’ den Friday night and were mauled by the varsity starters and reserves, leaving with a 65-34 loss.
In the make-up game, rescheduled because of bad weather, the Warriors struggled to put the ball in the hole all night, though they never gave up on the defensive end of the court.
The Panthers led the entire game, but to the Warriors’ credit, they kept it interesting.
Casey Cable unsealed the Panther basket with a three-pointer in the opening minutes of the game, and the Panthers never looked back.
The first period ended with a huge blocked shot for the Warriors and the visiting team down three points.
Junior Andy Sistenstein missed a shot late in the second period, but senior Chris Hendrick stuffed it back down on the put-back, bringing the score to 28-16.
The Warriors had many opportunities to bring the score closer, as the Panthers missed three buckets in the final seconds of the first half.
Hendrick is a strong defender and is often in foul trouble; however, he was not whistled for a first foul until the third period. Few fouls were called during the contest, with the Panthers only taking 15 shots from the line, connecting on eight.
The Panthers had a defensive breakdown early in the second half, and the Warriors took advantage, stealing the ball and taking it coast to coast. But they could not convert.
Several minutes later, the Warriors coach was whistled out on a technical, sending Panther Will Yager went to the line. Yager knocked down one of the two free-throws and brought the score to 33-21.
D.C. Craig hit a trey a few minutes later, and the Panthers began an onslaught that put them ahead 42-23 by the end of the third period. The reserves held the Warriors to 11 points for the remainder of the game.
“I was real pleased with a couple of things we were trying to do tonight, like pushing the ball [up the court] better and we shot the ball better. Whoever you’re playing, open shots are open shots,” Head coach Carroll Yager told his team after the game.
“Everybody that played really stayed within the things we were trying to do. Sometimes when you have a big lead like that, you get a little ragged,” Yager continued. “We never did get ragged. We play good defense just about every game, but we needed to play better offensively and I thought we did that. We had more assists tonight than we usually had.”
Yager, 13 points; Craig, 10; Zach Wise, 9; Sisenstein, 7; Kory Brocious, 6; Hendrick, 6; Cable, 5; Ethan Stewart, 4; Jesse Proctor, 3; Tyler Grant, 2.