Lady Panthers off to a hot start

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Rangely’s lady Panthers had a good showing at the Manila tournament last weekend. (Left to right) seniors Hannah Wilkie (4) and Susan Gillard (12), junior Dixie Rhea (20), senior Zoey Peck (13), sophomores Mary Scoggins (11), Adelynn Halcomb (23) and Shauna Lapp (14), and junior Kacie Lapp (3).

RANGELY | Rangely’s lady Panthers took to the road to tipoff their 2019-2020 season in Manila, Utah. The lady Panthers opened up their first game against Green River, Utah.

“We started well and just went to work. Our goal for the season is to be a defensive force that complicates any team’s offense,” said head coach Jimmie Mergelman.

The lady Panthers forced five half-court violations, two before halftime and three in the third quarter, during the game. Last season the Panthers only forced two all season. At the halftime buzzer, the Panthers were up by a score of 23-16. In the second half, the Panthers continued their stifling style of defense as they only allowed nine points to the lady Pirates. The Panthers closed out the game with a victory of 44-34 over the Pirates for their first win of the season. Senior Hannah Wilkie led the Panthers in scoring with 16 points followed by fellow senior Zoey Peck and junior Kacie Lapp, who both scored eight points. 

On Saturday, the lady Panthers found themselves playing the host team, the Manila Mustangs.  The Panthers were looking for redemption from the 2018-2019 season when the Mustangs handed the Panthers their only loss of the tournament.

Mergelman was delighted with the ladies’ effort in this game. “I thought this was our best game of the weekend. Things just fell into place well, and everything clicked.”

The Panthers continued their streak of backcourt violations as they forced four more in their game against the Mustangs. Sophomore Mary Scoggins led the second-quarter charge where the Panthers outscored the Mustangs 16-3. The Mustangs were only allowed one made shot coming on a three-point attempt. The lady Panthers defeated the Mustangs with a score of 54-24. Mary Scoggins led all scoring with 21, followed by Wilkie 16, Shauna Lapp with five, K. Lapp and Halcomb each chipping in four, followed by Gillard and Peck with two apiece. 

The last game of the day was against the Intermountain Christian School (ICS) Lions, finishing with a win with a score of 46-15. Once again, the Panthers tried to better themselves with their defensive effort and continue to improve on the offensive end. The Panthers did not surrender a double-digit scoring quarter to the lady Lions. The second quarter proved to be the best again for the Panthers as they outscored the Lions 20-7. The Panthers followed their second-quarter performance in the third quarter by not allowing a single point in the quarter.

Overall, Mergelman was pleased with her squad’s performance. “Many great basketball moments happened this weekend. I was very impressed with our rebounding lead by junior Kacie Lapp. Our defensive hustle was nice to see, making it hard for teams to score.” A congratulation is in place for Shauna Lapp, who placed fourth in the three-point contest. The lady Panthers lost to the Cedaredge Bruins at home Tuesday 40-37 and will travel to Telluride on Friday for a non-conference match against the Miners.

Special to the Herald Times