Wednesday, January 28, 2009

SPORTS>>Sterrenberg finds range as Panthers bounce back from loss to beat Bryant

Leader sportswriter

Bryant was outgunned from the start in Cabot’s 57-30 win on Friday night at Panther Pavilion. Adam Sterrenberg’s 23-point performance led the way for Cabot (13-5, 3-2 7A-Central) and his second-quarter heroics completely deflated the visiting Hornets (7-10, 1-4).

Cabot bounced back from a disappointing showing at Central last Tuesday to remain in a three-way tie for third with Van Buren and Russellville, a game behind North Little Rock and Conway.

“I thought it was a good team effort by everybody,” said Panthers coach Jerry Bridges. “When you play good defense and you rebound, and you force turnovers, it’s easier to go to your transition game than when people are getting offensive rebounds and putbacks on you like Central did the other night.”

Sterrenberg, an Arkansas State signee, had eight points in the second quarter, including a three-point basket, a steal that he took coast to coast for a dunk, and another steal and drive to the hoop that resulted in a dizzying reverse lay-up to start the quarter.

Sterrenberg also added six rebounds and six steals. He got one more jam in the fourth quarter before coach Jerry Bridges pulled him and the rest of the Panther starters. Cabot pushed its advantage to 30 points with four minutes remaining to initiate a continuous clock.

Sterrenberg was still good for nine points in the second half, but also used his court presence to create mismatches for his teammates. His penetration and quick kick outs gave others looks at open threes, and Jack Bridges took advantage for three of his six points for the game in the third quarter.

Sterrenberg’s well-rounded performance pleased the head Panther.

“He’s just got that scorer’s mentality,” Bridges said. “He ran some point for us, and he’s learning that if the shots aren’t falling, let’s look to get other people involved. Adam is a fine ball player, and he’s made my job a little easier the last couple of years.”

Cabot rushed out to an 11-6 lead after one. Sterrenberg’s first steal and coast-to-coast trip extended the lead to seven, and Austin Johnson added to more on the Panthers’s next trip with a putback of his own miss. A Sterrenberg trey and then a dunk put Cabot up 22-10 by the 4:22 mark of the second quarter. The Panthers held Bryant to only 13 points in the first half.

Johnson added seven points and five rebounds, while Jack Bridges, Gary Clark and Miles Monroe each had six.

Cabot's game at Van Buren last night was postponed due to inclement weather.