The county rival game we all know as the “Clash of the Cats” was played Friday night at Logan County High School.
The Lady Panthers were able to beat the Lady Cougars for the second time this year with a close win of 40-39. Even though the Panthers had beat the Cougars twice, it was the Cougars who were able to bring down the Panthers for the first time this season with a 75-71 win.
The Clash started out between the Lady Cougars and the Lady Panthers. The game for the girls started out slow, but the Lady Cougars were able to start out with a lead of 8-6 after the first quarter.The Lady Panthers picked up their speed as they took the lead in the second quarter, finishing up the first half with a small lead of 18-15.
The Lady Panthers were able to pull away some in the third quarter, with a lead of 27-22 going into the final quarter of the game. Both of the teams had big fourth quarters, with the Lady Cougars scoring 17 points. The Lady Cougars came close, but the Lady Panthers were able to fight them off to take the win.
Abbey Hinton was the points leader for the Lady Cougars with 12 points. Maegann Hardison followed with eight points and Megan Lindsey finished with seven.
Amber Sydnor finished the game with 21 points for the Lady Panthers. DeVonna Sydnor finished with 10 and Khalia Hampton with seven points.
“I think the girls did great tonight. They did a good job of sticking to the game plan,” said Lady Panther head coach Dedra Adler. “Our offense was not very good tonight but our defense stuck with them and kept the ball in our court. They did what I asked them from them and that’s always good.”
Next was the game between the Cougars and the Panthers as they clashed for a win. The Panthers were the points leader early in the game, with a lead of 18-11 going into the second quarter.
The Cougars fought hard to stay with the Panthers, but it was a last second three point shot from Torin Graham that put both teams tied at 34-34 going into the second half.
The Cougars were able to maintain a close lead and keep the Panthers from a comeback, finishing the third quarter up 58-56. The Panthers continued to battle to keep a perfect record against the Cougars this season, and it was Lee McMurry who scored five straight points to put the Panthers up 67-65 with three minutes remaining in the fourth.
The Panther lead didn’t last long, the Cougars turned it up and gained a lead of 71-69 with just seconds on the clock. The Cougars hit their free throws in the final seconds and the Cougars defense was able to shut out the Panthers to end the game 75-71.
Russellville senior Jordan Kennedy led the Panthers with 19 points. Lee McMurry finished with a strong 16 points. Seniors Zach Hines and Darrin Quarles both contributed 12 points to the Panthers.
“I feel like Logan did what they had to do to win the game. We got down early in the second half and the guys kept fighting and we got up by three near the end,” said Russellville head coach Phil Todd. “I don’t think we played smart. We were taking good shots but they didn’t finish them. We lost a few players to fouls and had to go away from the game plan and I think that hurt us.”
Logan County senior Torin Graham was the points leader for the game with 23 points. Both Clint Knight and Landon Stratton contributed 13 points. Ben Wright finished the game with 10 for the Cougars.
“I’m very happy with the win. These boys fought hard and showed what hark work can do,” said Logan County head coach Lonnie Mason. “They never quit and the whole team played hard. I have to give a shout out to the student body. They were awesome and brought up the players.”
The Russellville Panthers will face the Todd County Rebels in an away double-header on Friday. The Logan County Cougars will have a home double-header next Tuesday against South Warren.