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PHS HOOPS TEAMS READY FOR STATE TOURNEY

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Boys finish runners up, girls third at 3A West regional

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PHS HOOPS TEAMS READY FOR STATE TOURNEY

The Panther boys' basketball team poses with the 3A West runner-up plaque.

The Panther boys' basketball team poses with the 3A West runner-up plaque.

Devon Curtis

The Panther boys' basketball team poses with the 3A West runner-up plaque.

Devon Curtis

Devon Curtis

The Panther boys' basketball team poses with the 3A West runner-up plaque.

The Panther and Lady Panther basketball teams solidified their spots in the state competition, which will take place March 7-9 at the casper Events Center in Casper.

The Powell girls placed third while the boys were runners up at the 3A West Regional Basketball tournament in Worland Feb. 28-March 2.

The Lady Panthers had a rocky start at the beginning of the tournament, playing Lyman for their first game on Feb. 28 and losing 54-33.

“The first game against Lyman was our toughest match,” senior post Rachel Bonander said. “They were very good, and we were very well prepared. It just didn’t go our way.”

The loss against Lyman seemed to awaken the Lady Panthers’ spirit, and they went on to defeat the Big Piney Lady Punchers the following day 56-11 score.Senior Katie Mckenzie hit five 3-pointers in this game, a season high for her.

PHS then went on to play the Worland Lady Warriors in a loser-out game and in what would also be the Lady Panthers’ closest game of the tournament. Powell played a tough game, and managed to stay ahead of Worland for each quarter. The Lady Panthers fought hard earning themselves another victory 43-41.

Photo courtesy: Erin Curtis
The Lady Panthers pose with their third-place plaque after the 3A West regional tournament.

The Lady Panthers then finished off another game against the Lander Valley Lady Tigers for third and fourth place. The Lady Panthers kept up their winning momentum and came out on top with a 46-40 lead. The Lady Panthers will go on to play the Rawlins Lady Outlaws for the first round of state on March 7.

The Lady Panthers seem confident moving forward into state.

“I think if we come to play like we did at regionals we will do great at state,” Bonander said.

Powell is the No. 3 seed out of the West regional and will fact Rawlins, No. 2 in the East, at 9 a.m. Thursday, March 7.

 

The Panthers had a better start to their tournament. The Panthers took on the Big Piney Punchers first round, earning their first win of the tournament 61-39.

Big Piney ended the first quarter with in the lead, but the Panthers turned the tables by the end of the first half.

The Panthers kept their aggressive play up against the Pinedale Wranglers the next day in the championship play-in game. This proved to be another close game, but Powell ultimately kept the lead for most of the game, earning another victory 52-42.

Trouble only came when the Panthers went up against the Lander Tigers for the championship match. With post players Carson Heinen and Kain Baxter unavailable, the Panthers were left without any “bigs.” Regardless, the team still played an aggressive game against Lander Valley. Unfortunately, the aggressive play wasn’t enough and the Panthers ended up losing 64-74.

The Panthers, who enter the state tournament the No. 2 seed in the West region, feel overall pleased with their performance, ending the tournament with a second-place finish and shot at state.

“Everyone, including the ones coming off the bench, gave 100 percent,” senior shooting guard William Preator said. “As a team we stuck together.”

PHS will play the No. 3 Torrington Trailblazers at the state tournament at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, March 7. The Panthers hope to get another win for Powell, and a shot at a state title.

“I think just getting a game plan and staying healthy is the best thing we can do before we head down to Casper,” Preator said. “Go Panthers and lets get dubs this weekend.”

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PHS HOOPS TEAMS READY FOR STATE TOURNEY