Aces Fold Against Purple Panthers

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After finishing 1-3 in the Waterloo Thanksgiving Tournament, the Litchfield Purple Panthers would travel to Mulberry Grove on Friday night, Dec. 3. 

The Aces, who also finished 1-3 during their Thanksgiving tournament, would struggle to hold onto the ball during the contest. Mulberry Grove would commit over 40 turnovers as Litchfield would cruise to their second win, 60-32.

The Panthers would grab a commanding lead in the opening minutes of the contest. Litchfield put 12 points on the board before Mulberry would be able to add any numbers to their side of the scoreboard. It would be just under three minutes before the Aces would grab their first points of the contest, their lone basket in the opening quarter.

Mulberry would run into problems as they would commit 13 turnovers, which would be four more than the total shots they would take during the quarter. 

Litchfield would continue to add points to their side of the board, connecting on five more points to give them a 17-2 lead after one quarter. 

Even in building the commanding lead, Litchfield could have done a lot more damage as they would only connect on 29 percent of their first quarter shots.

Keenan Powell would help lead the way for Litchfield as he would add seven points during the quarter, three coming from the charity stripe. 

The tempo would heat up in the second quarter as both teams shook off any rust in the opening frame. The Aces would find a way to put up 15 points in the quarter, after only putting a two spot on the board in the opening quarter.  

Even though the Aces would have success on their side of the court, the Panthers would be able to extend on their lead as they would add 18 points to their total. 

Litchfield’s shot selections from inside the perimeter would improve as they would shoot over 50 percent inside the arc. Litchfield’s defense would continue to give the Aces fits, though, as Mulberry Grove continued to struggle on their possessions. The Aces would commit 16 more turnovers in the quarter to give them 29 turnovers in the first half.  

After putting five points on the board in the opening quarter, Victor McGill would add three more baskets to his total, giving him 11 points in the first half. Tate Dobrinich and Powell would also contribute on the scoreboard as they both would add four points to their totals. 

Powell and McGill’s 11 points would lead the way for Litchfield at the half as the Panthers would lead the Aces 35-17 at the half. 

Just like the first quarter, the third quarter would also see the Aces struggling to find good shots to narrow the Panthers’ lead. Litchfield would hold Mulberry Grove to only seven shots in the third frame, as the Aces would commit 12 more turnovers. 

Litchfield would use the first six and a half minutes to increase their 18-point lead to 28 points as they would outscore Mulberry Grove 13-0. 

The Aces would end the cold streak at the minute and a half mark as they connected on their first basket of the half. 

Both teams would exchange baskets in the final minute as Litchfield would hold a 51-22 lead after three quarters of action. McGill would have the hot hand in the quarter for Litchfield as he would tally seven points in the quarter, giving him 18 points in the contest. McGill’s points would push him over the century mark on total points on the young season with 101 points. 

After putting in 11 points in the first half Keenan Powell would get a lone basket, giving him 13 in the game. Powell’s 13 points would give him 52 on the season, the second highest total on the Panthers. 

In the final frame, the contest would move faster than normal as Litchfield’s lead would result in a running clock. A combined 19 points would be scored in the fourth quarter, nine coming from the Panthers. 

Seven of those nine points would come from the hands of freshmen as Harrison Thomas, Martavious Jones and Keenan Logan would each put points on the board for Litchfield. Thomas and Jones both had already recorded points in a varsity game, but Logan’s free throw would be his first of his varsity career. 

The freshman connection in the final frame would help close out the contest for the Panthers as they would secure their second win of the season with a 60-32 victory. 

Fourteen of the 15 Panthers that saw action in the contest would put points on the board. McGill would lead all scorers with his 18 points in three quarters. Keenan Powell would follow with 13 points in the same amount of quarters. 

Litchfield will have a week off as they welcome fans to Simmons Gym on Friday, Dec. 10, in a South Central Conference show down with the Greenville Comets.

Dec. 3 at Mulberry Grove

Litchfield 17 18 16 9 60

Mulberry Grove 2 15 5 10 32

Litchfield (60) - Victor McGill 18, Keenan Powell 13, Tate Dobrinich 6, Carson Saathoff 4, Harrison Thomas 4, Clayton Bishop 3, Martavious Jones 2, A.J. Odle 2, Gavin Thimsen 2, Nate Fetter 2, Kelvin Dooley 1, Bryce Hires 1, A.J. Sypherd 1, Keenan Logan 1. Totals: 20 19-27 60.

Three-point field goals: Litchfield 1 (McGill 1).

Records: Litchfield (2-3); Mulberry Grove (1-4).

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