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Win-win evening for Panthers, Rebels

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By Sharon Graves

The Owen County Rebels ventured into the Panther’s den on Saturday night for a four-game set between the boys and girl’s teams and split the bill, with Carroll County coming away with a win in the boys junior varsity and the girls varsity games.

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A large crowd, nearly filling both sides of the gym, was entertained with a night of great basketball. And each side went home with one JV and one varsity win.  

The men’s varsity team gave excellent effort, according to Head Coach Carroll Yager, but offensively the Panthers were not able to connect.  The game was fast paced and hard fought but the Panthers had trouble putting the ball in the hole late in the contest.

“I was very pleased with the effort our team gave,” Yager said. The Panthers played tough defense all night, but the ball just wouldn’t fall, especially in the fourth period.

The Panthers led at the end of the first period, 12-8, but the Rebels came back in the second period tying the game up 22 even.

Several starters lost precious needed minutes on the floor due to foul trouble.  Seniors Chris Hendrick and Matt Allen eventually fouled out in the tightly called game.

The Panthers and the Rebels traded baskets for the third period, tying 31 all before heading into the fourth quarter.

That’s when the Panther shooting went cold and the Rebels began to take advantage of the fouls the Panthers were forced into giving up to get the ball back.

The Panthers only netted one trey, one field goal and three shots from the charity stripe while the Rebels went to the line 15 times and made 8 of them during the fourth period.

Will Yager was high scorer of the night with 14 and Chris Hendrick adding 8 more.

The Panthers played last night at Henry County in another double-header with the girls after press time and will also play Friday night at Gallatin County.

The Lady Panthers Varsity team faired better beating the Lady Rebels by a final of 51-38.

The Lady Panthers came out on fire both offensively and defensively completely shutting down the Lady Rebels offense, holding them to only one field goal in the first half.

The Lady Panthers were in foul trouble from the get-go when Kyndal Curry was whistled for her first foul with 16 seconds off the clock.  Curry eventually fouled out and Lindsay Wallace got her second foul before the final two minutes in the first period.

The Lady Rebels took advantage of the Lady Panther foul trouble by scoring nine of their 11 first half points from the charity stripe.  The Lady Rebels made a run at the Lady Panthers in the third period by outscoring them 17-15, but the early deficit was too large to overcome.

Sarah Osborne was called for all four of her fouls in the third period, but she was the high scorer on the night with 14. She also had 3 rebounds and 3 assists along with a great defensive effort, according to Head coach Randy Mefford.

Freshman Hannah Devine recorded her fourth double double of the season, scoring 12 points and pulling down 10 rebounds and Lindsay Wallace added 10. Tasha Hunter scored nine off the bench with three assists, Mefford said.

“It was an interesting day of basketball,” Mefford said.  “The boys JV won, girls JV lost; the girls varsity won and the boys varsity lost.  We won two and they won two.”

 “Owen county is becoming one of our top rivals if they’re not already there.  I was really pleased with the number of people that came out and watched the games today,” Mefford said

“We’re a really good passing team.  We fouled a little too much, but we’re small and sometimes we have to fowl,” Mefford said.  I think the three games we played in East Carter really helped us.”

Mefford said he was pleased to get the win in district play.  “I told the girls at halftime that they would make a run at us, and we came out a little bit sluggish.  “It was a good way to start out the new year, with a win,” Mefford said.