Tuesday, February 07, 2017

SPORTS STORY >> Cabot girls escape MSM with victory

Leader sports editor

The Cabot Lady Panthers had a bit more difficult time at Mount St. Mary on Friday than they did at home against the Belles three days before, but they still pulled out a critical 48-41 victory to move to three wins in the 7A-Central Conference. That’s important because it gives the Lady Panthers the tiebreaker over MSM in case of a tie for the sixth and final playoff spot.

Friday’s victory moved Cabot into fifth place, with one more conference win than MSM and Fort Smith Southside, and three more than last-place and winless Bryant.

Friday’s game in Little Rock was still tied after three quarters, quite a different game than the 21-point win the Lady Panthers enjoyed at home on Tuesday.

After an 8-8 first quarter, the Lady Panthers took a 25-21 lead into the locker room at halftime, but then only managed three points the entire third quarter, and was tied going into the fourth.

The Lady Panthers got back on track and pulled out to a small lead late in the fourth, and then made their free throws to hang on for the victory.

Holly Allen continued the hot shooting she enjoyed last Tuesday when she made seven 3 pointers and scored 25 points. On Friday, she only made two 3-pointers, but went 5 of 8 from the field and made all three free throws to finish with a game-high 15.

Josie VanOss added 11 for the Lady Panthers (14-7, 3-5). Valerie Kauffman led MSM (7-13, 2-6) with nine points.

The Lady Panthers hosted a crucial game with Fort Smith Southside on Tuesday. Look for details of that matchup in Saturday’s edition of The Leader.

Conversely, the Cabot boys played better on Friday than on Tuesday, and beat the Rockets by a lopsided 65-40 final score. After Cabot built a 13-6 lead in the first quarter, the Rockets got hot from outside and posted 19 points in the second to pull within 31-25 by halftime. It was the only period of the game in which Cabot gave up double-digit points. The Panthers (16-3, 6-2) scored 17 points in each of the last two quarters, while holding Catholic to 15 total.

Bobby Joe Duncan and Jalen Brown each made four 3-pointers for Cabot. Duncan led all scorers with 19 points while Brown and Logan Gilbertston scored 13 apiece.

The Panthers were impressive from the floor, making 31 of 53 shot attempts, including 10 of 17 from outside. But they were just 13 of 20 from the foul line.

John Chase led Catholic (0-17, 0-8) with 11 points.

Cabot is now second place in league play. Northside is even in the loss column but only has five wins. Conway has six wins, but three losses.