Lady Panthers take fourth place
The Rugby Panthers and the Bishop Ryan Lions competed for third place on the final night of the Region 6 Girls Basketball tournament in Minot.
And the Panthers were the recipients of a fourth place finish with a 51-37 loss to the Lions.
Both teams were taken out of region title contention with semi-final losses two days prior, the Panthers due to the Our Redeemer’s Christian School Knights and the Lions due to the Velva-Sawyer Aggies.
The Panthers worked up a 6-2 lead early in the game with Karsyn Hager and Madison Uhlenkamp in the paint. The Lions then came to within one point with a three-pointer from guard Sealy Rovig. After some work in the paint and a 2-for-2 trip to the foul line, the Panthers were already in double digit scoring. A make from center Annika Stewart put the Lions down by just five points at the end of the first quarter.
Panther center Breanna Thompson got her squad on the board first in the second quarter after a scoreless minute of play for both sides. The Lions then went on a 12-2 run to take the lead.
Missed buckets plagued both teams, with the Lions shooting 12.5 percent on the night from outside, 38.6 percent while inside, and shooting 5-for-11 or 45.5 percent from the foul line. The Panthers meanwhile shot 30.8 percent on the night from inside, 14.3 percent from outside, and 70.6 percent (12-for-17) from the foul line.
The Lions defense held the Panthers to just seven points in the third quarter, while their offense added 18 more points to their lead.
Foul troubles would rear their ugly heads in the fourth quarter, with five Panthers and three Lions being sent to the line. Panther guard Anni Stier, who had been 4-for-4 in the preceding quarters, went 3-for-3 on one trip due to a technical foul and 1-for-2 on the next. The Lions would get the last point of the game on a 1-for-2 trip for forward Hailee Jundt, who came in off the bench.
The Panthers’ season ended with a 20-5 record.
“We’ve got a really good nucleus coming back, we’ve got a lot of quickness coming back,” Panthers head coach Jen Brossart said of next year. “We really need to get in the weight room. We need to be stronger on the ball and it’s evident by when we get into very tough teams we struggle with that.”