Quick Start Pushes Pana Past Panthers

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After winning back-to-back games, Litchfield would run into a roadblock in Pana on Friday evening, Dec. 17. Pana would use a big second quarter, building a 36-point lead, and would cruise to a 68-49 South Central Conference victory.  

Pana would jump out early on the Purple Panthers as they would score and continue to score throughout the opening quarter. After falling behind 6-0, Litchfield would get their first points of the game when Victor McGill knocked down a field goal three minutes into the contest. McGill would add two more baskets in the quarter, giving him six points and all the scoring Litchfield could come up with in the first eight minutes. 

Pana on the other hand would find many ways to score as they would pile on 20 points and build a 20-6 lead in the first quarter. 

Litchfield’s Nate Fetter would open the second frame with a two-point basket, but Pana would respond with a 10-0 run. The run would push Pana’s lead to 30-8. 

Throughout the quarter the Pana Panthers would take advantage of some uncharacteristic play by the Purple Panthers. Litchfield would have trouble on the offensive side of the court as they would struggle to maintain possession or find a good open shot. Pana would capitalize on the Litchfield miscues as they would be able to complete several transition baskets. 

The Purple Panthers would again have to settle for only six points in the quarter, as McGill and A.J. Odle would combine for the other four points scored. 

Pana would continue to score points in the quarter as they would put in 28 second quarter points, building a 48-12 advantage going into the locker rooms. 

While Litchfield would have three scorers in the book at halftime, Pana would have seven players that put points on the board in the opening two quarters. Junior Devon Peebles would have the hot hand for Pana as he would put in 13 first half points. McGill’s six first quarter points and two free throws in the second quarter would lead Litchfield in the scoring column with eight points.  

Pana would come out of the locker room with the continued success on the offensive side of the court. Pana would be able to put on 15 more points throughout the quarter and would hold a 40-point lead, 56-16, early in the second half. 

Litchfield would put together some adjustments in the locker room as they would find some success on the offensive side of the court. After only scoring 12 points in the first half, Litchfield would tally 15 points in the third quarter. 

McGill, averaging 17.3 points per game, would continue to help Litchfield in the scoring column as he would tally six third quarter points. Gavin Thimsen would get in the scoring column as well as he would put in four points for Litchfield. 

Even though Litchfield would continue to fight, Pana’s early success would make it tough for the Purple Panthers to climb as Pana would hold a 63-27 lead after three quarters. 

With the Pana lead being large enough, the final quarter would see the clock continue to roll. Litchfield, though, would not tuck their tails and run as they would pile on 22 points in the final quarter. 

Keenan Powell, averaging 9.9 points a game, would lead Litchfield in scoring as he would tally nine fourth quarter points, his total for the contest. A.J. Sypherd would help Litchfield during the run as he connected on a three-point basket. 

Litchfield’s big fourth quarter would help narrow the Pana lead, but the 40-point deficit built in the third quarter would make it tough for Litchfield to make a comeback in the final quarter. The effort would not go unnoticed as they would outscore Pana 22-5 before the contest would come to a close.  

The 68-49 defeat would drop Litchfield to 4-5 overall and 0-2 in the South Central Conference. Pana would move to 4-1 overall and claim their first South Central Conference win of the season. 

Senior Colin Schmitz would lead all scorers with 17 points, 10 coming in the first half. Victor McGill would once again lead Litchfield in scoring with 14 points, followed by Keenan Powell’s nine fourth quarter points and A.J. Odle, who tallied nine points throughout the contest. 

Litchfield will have a two-game homestand this week as they host Springfield Calvary on Tuesday, Dec. 21, and Nokomis on Wednesday, Dec. 22.

December 17 at Pana

Litchfield 6 6 15 22 49

Pana 20 28 15 5 68

Litchfield (49) - Victor McGill 15, A.J. Odle 9, Keenan Powell 9, Gavin Thimsen 4, Carson Saathoff 4, A.J. Sypherd 3, Tate Dobrinich 2, Nate Fetter 2, Bryce Hires 2. Totals: 20 7-7 49.

Pana (68) - Colin Schmitz 17, Devon Peebles 13, Brenden Schoonover 12, Drew Hackler 7, Evan Hudlin 6, Kyle Kuhn 6, Ethan Hicks 3, Brant Bowker 2, Max Lynch 2. Totals: 25 10-12 68.

Three-point field goals: Litchfield 2 (Powell 1, A.J. Sypherd 1); Pana 8 (Schmitz 2, Schoonover 2, Hudlin 2, Hackler 1, Hicks 1).

Records: Litchfield (4-5, 0-2); Pana (4-1, 1-0).

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