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Panthers take see-saw battle from Eudora

WLH0151 The Paola Panther Boys Basketball Team bounced back from their worst defeat of the season last Tuesday night at Mill Valley, by jumping out to a quick lead on the Eudora Cardinal Boys Basketball team , only to see the Cardinals overtake they and then come back to take a four point 59-54 victory Friday night, January 30, 2009 at Eudora.

“A road win like that in our league is big,” said Panthers Head Coach Dave Cash. “They’re a good team, they made runs, you kept your composure and came out on top.”

The Panthers jumped out to a 7-0 lead on the Cardinals on the strength of baskets by Jonathan Pomatto and Travis Hayes and a three pointer by Michael Bryson. Baskets by Drew Nobel and Mack Hartwell cut the lead to three, Pomatto hit a jumper before Cody Carlson and Justin Ballcock hit a jumper and a free throw to cut the Panther lead to two at the end of the quarter at 9-7.

The Cardinals caught and passed the Panthers to start the second quarter on the strength of two free throws by Ballcock, a three pointer by Nobel, and a free throw Brian Katzfey to open a four point, 13-9 lead. Adam Henn hit two baskets and a free throw around single free throws by Katzfey and Carlson and the game was tied at 14. The Cardinals stretched their lead to four on baskets by Carlson and Nobel, but Isaac Cotton hit a three pointer for the Panthers and the Eudora lead was one at 18-17. The Cardinals went on a 6-2 to close the half with a 24-19 lead.

“You played together tonight,” Cash said. “You made some mistakes, but you let them go and kept playing.”

The Panthers wasted little time getting back into the game, as the second haf started, as Adam Henn and Hayes hit a jumper and a three pointer to tie the game at 24. Nobel put the Cardinals back in the lead at 26-24 just before Hayes went to the bench after picking up his fourth foul with 5:39 to play in the quarter.

Paola didn’t let Hayes’ departure phase them, as they embarked on a 9-0 run on the strength of a free throw by Brandon Erisman and Bryson as well as five points from Brint Hastert and a nice basket by Cotton off a missed free throw by Bryson. The run opened the Panthers biggest lead of the game at 33-26. Eudora was not to be denied, outscoring the Panthers 11-0 to take a 37-33 lead with under a minute to play in the quarter. Erisman hit a three pointer and Michael Bricker answered with a basket and the Cardinals held a three point, 39-36 lead.

WLH0156 Pomatto pulled the Panthers even at 39 by hitting three of four free throws, before Carlson hit a free throw to move the Cardinals back in front at 40-39. The Panthers jumped back on top with baskets from Pomatto, Nick Wilson and Hayes along with two free throws by Hayes and after the 8-0 run, the Panthers were up by seven at 47-40.

The Cardinals made another run a basket and two free throws by Ballcock, which prompted the Panthers to call time out with 1:19 to play in the game. Katzfey got the Cardinals within two at 47-45, before Henn knocked down two free throws with a half a minute to play in the game at 49-45. Neither team would score again and the final remained 49-45.

“Offensively we moved as well as we have all year long,” Cash said. “You deserved to win that game.”

The Panthers will take a week off now, before returning to action next Friday Night to take on the Ottawa Cyclones in Homecoming action.

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