Panthers Overrun Aggies
Coming off of a close game a few days prior, the Rugby Panthers had the advantage at home Tuesday against the Velva Aggies, 79-51.
“We were out-executed and they showed their athleticism as well,” Aggies head coach Tyler Ystaas said. “They were well-disciplined, well-coached, they can run their offense well and they play tough defense. We really didn’t have an answer.”
Panthers junior forward Anders Johnson and senior forward Ryan Michels took the lead. After a 3-pointer from Aggies junior guard Brady Boyko, Michels went into the paint with a response 11 seconds later.
“Anders had a good game for us. I think Ryan kind of started the game in attack mode. It was a good night coming off a good one on Saturday,” (Panthers head coach Mike) Santjer said
Boyko then drilled his second of four 3s with 6:35 remaining in the first. He would later sink two more in the third quarter within seconds of each other.
“When [Boyko] catches in rhythm and shoots in rhythm he’s as tough as they come. He can be a real spark for us,” Ystaas said.
The Panthers then outscored the Aggies 22-7 in the second quarter, 19-15 in the third and 19-17 in the fourth.
Aggies senior forward Tate Abrahamson scored no points in the contest, leaving the game with a concussion in the first half.
PANTHERS DEFEAT TITANS, 50-47
Last weekend the Panthers traveled to Towner and to the Minot State University campus to face the TGU Titans and the Lewis & Clark-Berthold Bombers, respectively.
Against the Titans, Johnson was able to get his own rebound for a layup in the final seconds to tie it up 14-14 at the end of the first quarter. Forward Chris Griffin would then take the lead, almost hitting a 3-point play at the 6:56 mark in the second quarter.
Titans junior forward Kolter Schell showed he could be a threat from outside, sinking 3s at the 3:00 mark in the first, and in the final seconds of the second and with 1:2 to go in the third quarter.
The first half ended with the Panthers in the lead, 28-26. Titans junior guard Caleb Cross opened the second half with his first two points of the night to tie it up. Michels then retook the lead with a successful trip to the foul line for two.
PANTHERS DEPLETE BOMBERS, 49-44
The next day, at the MSU Dome, the Panthers briefly had the lead to end the first quarter.
Johnson put up the first points of an error and foul-filled game against the Bombers, and would later put up a three with less than 2 minutes remaining in the first.
The Bombers had responses of their own from outside, including one from NBA range from junior guard Alex Nelson and one from senior guard Clay Hornberger
Hornberger then took the lead back from the Panthers with 6:48 remaining in the first half, after junior guard Garrett Hanson went 1-for-2 from the charity stripe to tie it up. Panthers senior forward Tyler Schmaltz responded 20 seconds later with a layup. Then Bombers’ junior guard Keaton Borud fired back.
Nelson then hit another 3-pointer with 39 seconds left in the half. Sophomore guard Landen Foster’s 3-pointer with 5 seconds left put the Panthers within two at halftime.
Bombers’ junior guard Cody Hamilton opened the second half from outside.
The Panthers took the lead back again with Michels scoring after Johnson found success at the foul line.
The final seconds of the fourth quarter saw Michels go to the foul line twice, missing his first two but then drilling his next. Hornberger then went to the bench, fouling out.
The Panthers traveled to Drake on Friday, and on Tuesday play the no.1-ranked Four Winds-Minnewaukan Indians at home, starting at 4:30 p.m.
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