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Panthers Go 1-2 in Mike Murphy Classic

January 11, 2014
Augusta Independent Schools

     The Augusta Panthers opened up play in the Mike Murphy Classic on Wednesday (Dec. 18) against the Lewis County Lions.  The 1st quarter was a tight one as the teams battled back and forth with the Panthes holding a 18-16 lead after 8 minutes.  In the 2nd quarter the Panthers' scoring fell off as the Lions kept up their pace and took a 35-32 lead to the break.
     In the 3rd quarter it was all about defense.  As they have numerous times this season, the Panthers emerged from the half with defensive pressure that changed the game.  Lewis County was only able to put up 7 points in the quarter as Augusta took control, 53-42.  The Panthers would not relinquish the lead again and went on to win, 73-54.  The win made the Panthers 8-0 on the season.  Brent Bach led all scorers with 39 points.  Joining him in double digits was Camryn Snapp with 13.
     "When we get in a rut and need to change things up we turn to our defense," said Coach Hinson, "The boys stepped up tonight made this win happen."
Scoring vs. Lewis County:  Bach 39, Snapp 13, Maddox 6, Freeman 6, Gray 4, Barrett 3, Tucker 2
     The next foe for the Panthers would be the Mason County Royals in the Murph Classic semifinals.  Of course we all remember what happened the last time these 2 teams met so the excitement was in the air for this one.  From the start Mason County would use their superior height to jump ahead as most of their 20 1st quarter points were scored in the paint.  The Panthers hung tough in the 1st putting up 14 of their own points.  The 2nd quarter wasn't too kind to Augusta though as the Royals' pressure and size gave Augusta trouble and the teams went to intermission with Mason County leading, 38-23.
     The second half was played nearly even but with the hole that had been dug already it made it hard for the Panthers to mount a comeback.  They would suffer their first loss of the season dropping to 8-1.  Brent Bach led all scorers with 33 points.  Connor Maddox finished with 20.
     "Mason County used their size and depth to put us away in this one," said Coach Hinson, "We'll learn from our mistakes and hopefully be better prepared come district time."
Scoring vs. Mason County: Bach 33, Maddox 20, Snapp 8, Freeman 6, Gray 2
     Next up for the Panthers was the Harrison County Thorobreds in the losers bracket of the Murph Classic.  Once again Augusta found itself up against a team with more size.  The game started with a slow pace.  Augusta wasn't able to get much going early on as the Breds took a 13-9 lead into the 2nd quarter.  Once again the Panthers were struggling from the field but luckily Harrison County wasn't shooting much better.  Augusta trailed at the half, 32-25.
     In the 3rd quarter the Panthers continued to hang around but couldn't turn things around and in fact saw Harrison County's lead grow as they led 47-38 going into the 4th quarter.  The Panthers would make a furious comeback in attempt to win the game.  It came down to Breds' point guard D.J. Jenkins and whether or not he could hit free throws.  He stepped up and hit 8 of 11 in the quarter to seal the win for the Breds as they defeated the Panthers, 75-68.  Augusta fell to 8-2, their second straight loss.  Brent Bach led all scorers with 33 points.  Also in double figures were Camryn Snapp with 16 and Connor Maddox with 12.  Bach and Maddox were named to the all tournament team.
     "We came out very sluggish.  I was afraid that might happen after last night's game (vs. Mason Co.)," said Coach Hinson, "We'll see them at home next month and we'll see where we are at that point."
Scoring vs. Harrison County: D.J. Jenkins 22, Pulliam 22, Thompson 22, Williams 4, Case 4, Ritchie 2

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