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8th Grade Lady Panthers Cruise to County Title
February 27, 2008 - Knightstown’s eighth grade girls basketball team belted Blue River 24-8 and Shenandoah 47-25 to win the Henry County Tournament at Tri High Saturday.
Coach Susan Crowe’s girls took completed control of both games immediately, and rolled to convincing wins.
Against the Lady Vikings, Knightstown held Blue River to just two field goals in the entire contest. The Lady Panthers were cold from the field themselves, but got a first-quarter bucket from Ariel Sturgill and 2-0 after the first stop. Sturgill added a second-quarter fielder and Kaelee Kuhn scored three points as Knightstown led 7-4 at the half.
Blue River managed a three-pointer in the third quarter, but that would be their last field goal of the game. Knightstown responded with 14 points in the third frame to blow the game wide open.
Sturgill scored five points in the third quarter. Michelle Hochstedler hit two field goals, Shay Pope added three more points and Ashley Darling canned a jumper as the Lady Panthers went on a 14-3 scoring binge to increase their lead to 21-7.
Knightstown got another bucket from Pope and a free throw from Hochstedler to round out its scoring. Blue River managed just one free throw in the last quarter, giving them only one point in the first and fourth quarters combined.
Sturgill had a game-high nine points, out-scoring Blue River all by herself. Hochstedler and Pope added five points each, while Kuhn had three and Darling scored two.
Expecting Shenandoah to be their stiffest competition in the tournament field, Knightstown came out with both barrels loaded. The Lady Panthers essentially took the Lady Raiders out of the game with a big first-quarter run, and never looked back in a stellar 47-25 win.
Kuhn drilled two field goals – one was a trey – to score five of her game-high 17 points in the first quarter. Buckets by Darling, Pope, Sturgill and Mahaley Hagy staked Knightstown to a 13-4 lead after the first six minutes.
The Lady Panthers cooled off in the second quarter, hitting just three shots. Darling, Hochstedler and Maribeth Wells each nailed a fielder and the Knightstown lead was 19-9 at halftime.
Any thoughts Shenandoah had of a comeback were quickly snuffed in the third quarter. Kuhn lit up the gymnasium by drilling two three-pointers and scoring nine points in the period. Hochstedler also hit a trey and scored five points in the quarter as the Lady Panthers went on a 14-5 run to take a 33-14 lead.
Five different players scored in the fourth quarter for Knightstown. Wells and Pope each knocked down four points in the final frame, while Kuhn hit yet another three-pointer. Sturgill and Darling also scored in the last stanza.
Kuhn had a brilliant game, scoring 17 points and drilling four three-pointers. Hochstedler had seven points and got five of those when Knightstown put the game away in the third quarter.
Darling and Pope both scored six points, Wells had five, Sturgill scored four and Hagy added two.
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