Listen to this post
RANGELY I Rangely senior Cory Evans hit a three-pointer with 2.7 seconds left to play on his home court, to give his team a one-point victory (28-27) over the Meeker Cowboys Tuesday last.
The Panthers opened the 2013 part of the season with two close losses in non-conference games in Paonia (59-66) last Friday and against Hotchkiss (39-36) at home last Saturday but the win against Meeker, according to Panther head coach Eric Hejl, might just be the “spark” the team needed.
“I told them before the game, we are building up like kindling, just needing a little spark to light our fire and this might be it,” Hejl said after the game. “Cory shoots lights out in practice, I’m glad he made that shot, hopefully it gives him the confidence he needs to pull the trigger more in games.”
The score was tied at four at the end of the first quarter and Meeker led 13-9 at halftime. Meeker kept a four-point margin (21-17) going into the fourth quarter and Rangely continued to stay in the game. The Panthers pulled within one (23-24) with four minutes to play and trailed 25-26 with 30 seconds to play. Meeker’s Jeremy Musgrave was fouled and made one to give Meeker a two-point lead with 17 seconds to play.
Rangely passed the ball around, running down the clock before getting it to Evans who took the shot beyond the three-point arc and into the basket with 2.7 left to play to give the Panthers a 28-27 victory.
“We just didn’t quit,” Hejl said of the game against the team’s Rio Blanco County rival. “Our shots were not falling but I think our defense made them work hard and kind of wore them out and we just kept grinding.”
The Panthers will play on the road this weekend, traveling to Baggs, Wyo., Friday to play Little Snake River for a third time this season, then to Kremmling to take on the West Grand Mustangs.