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South basketball experiences ups and downs over five day weekend

Calvin Prenkert, Staff Writer/Photographer

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High scoring South blows past Arlington, 86-44

The South boys basketball team started hot against Indianapolis Arlington and took care of business, winning 86-44. The Panthers (12-2) reshuffled their starting lineup to include five guards, giving senior Philip King his first start of the season after returning from a fractured tibia several weeks ago. Junior Grayson Rolen came off the bench after sustaining a wrist injury to make his first appearance since the season opener against Edgewood.

The Panthers were led by sophomore Anthony Leal, who scored a career-high 24 points and santched five rebounds. Leal was coming off a rough three-point performance against Bloomington North, so scoring efficiently and effectively was key to help him keep his confidence. Senior Chance Coyle added 21 points and sophomore Noah Jager contributed 12 points, while freshman Connor Hickman put up 14 to give South four players in double figures.

South has enjoyed high field-goal and three-point shooting percentages all season, and the team has a plethora of scorers in the starting lineup and on the bench. Now, a little over halfway through the regular season, the Panthers will look to fine tune their game, specifically on the defensive end, in preparation for the postseason.

The Panthers will look to avenge the girls team’s recent loss to Martinsville when they play the Martinsville boys team at home this Friday, Jan. 19.

 

Artesians plow through the Lady Panthers, 51-39

It was a particularly cold night outside, but the Martinsville Artesians’ gym was comfortably warm, thanks to the offensive firepower coming from South’s Addy Blackwell and Martinsville’s Purdue-commit Kayana Traylor. In the end, Martinsville (13-7) walked away the win, 50-39.

This result didn’t come without a fight, as the Panthers (9-10) stayed with the Artesians until the fourth quarter, where South scored only five points to Martinsville’s 13. Leading South was Blackwell, who had 20 points on the night and provided the Panthers with their first eight points of the game. On the other side of the ball, Traylor produced a 28-point game and eclipsed the 2,000 career point milestone.

While these two traded points, the rest of the Panthers were unable to step up and provide a solid, second offensive option. Junior Sydney Leeper and sophomore Lauren Conner each added six points, but it wasn’t enough to make the impact needed to stop the Artesians.

The Panthers were without starter Kristen Ridner for the second game in a row. Ridner, who often provides solid offensive contributions, is out indefinitely with an injury. Until Ridner returns, several of the Panthers will need to step up offensively to win key games down the stretch.

The Panthers will look to improve their Conference Indiana record at home this Thursday, Jan. 18 against Terre Haute South.

South's Chris Bomba (20) during starting lineups.
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South basketball experiences ups and downs over five day weekend