Panthers’ furious comeback falls short

by Greg Ceilley
of The Review Staff


CODY KUHN of Plymouth tries to drive past Brayden Much of Sheboygan Falls during Tuesday’s basketball game. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley CODY KUHN of Plymouth tries to drive past Brayden Much of Sheboygan Falls during Tuesday’s basketball game. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley SHEBOYGAN FALLS – The Plymouth Panthers made a valiant comeback in the second half of Tuesday night’s boys basketball game but the host Sheboygan Falls Falcons staved them off to earn a 66-59 win in a battle of county arch-rivals.

Free-throw shooting proved critical in the outcome. PHS was only 14-for-26 (54 percent) at the charity stripe while Falls hit 18-for-24 (75 percent).

The Panthers rallied from a 50- 36 deficit in the second half to pull within 60-59 with 48 seconds left after going on a 23-10 run. Five Panthers contributed to the scoring in the rally, led by Cody Kuhn with seven points and Alex Shutter, five.

Trey Hake’s two free throws pushed Falls’ lead to 62-59 with 39 seconds remaining. The Panthers missed a reverse layup on their next possession and the Falcons’ Ross Krist was fouled.


CADE KNAUS of Plymouth attempts to penetrate the Sheboygan Falls defense in Tuesday’s basketball game. The Falcons’ defenders are Ross Krist (21), Jared Tenpas (middle) and Justin Tenpas. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley CADE KNAUS of Plymouth attempts to penetrate the Sheboygan Falls defense in Tuesday’s basketball game. The Falcons’ defenders are Ross Krist (21), Jared Tenpas (middle) and Justin Tenpas. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley Krist made both double-bonus foul shots, giving his team a 64-59 advantage with 25 seconds left.

PHS had two three-point shots blocked on its ensuing possession and their comeback hopes ended. Jared Petrie made two free throws to put Falls up 66-59 with 3.2 seconds remaining.

Petrie, a junior forward, scored a game-high 26 points and Hake added 20. PHS was led by Kuhn with 14 and Shutter, 12.

“A hard-fought game by both teams. We put ourselves in the hole in the first half by not defending the three-point line as well as we discussed and needed to do,” said Panther head coach Tim Schultz.

“To Falls’ credit they made some tough shots and played and shot the ball with a lot of confidence.”

The Falcons were lights-out from three-point range which sparked them to a 40-27 halftime lead. Falls drained six three-balls in the opening half, led by Petrie’s four. Petrie ex- ploded for 18 points in the opening half to lead the Falcons.

For the game, Falls hit 10 threes, compared to Plymouth’s five.

“As well as they shot the ball, we had plenty opportunities to change the outcome of the game. We had 10 more possessions, committed fewer turnovers, shot more free throws and took more shots from the floor then Falls did,” said Schultz.

“At times we we took too many hurried and forced shots from outside the three-point line when better shots were available.

“I feel we showed a lot of grit in the second half, coming back from a 15-point [actually 14-point] deficit to cut the lead to one. The failure to capitalize at the free-throw line really hurt us down the stretch.”

PHS missed the front end of two bonus free-throw chances in the final 4:30.

“This is a good win for us. I’m proud of the kids,” said Falcon head coach Jake Frohling.

“It’s always a good battle [against Plymouth] and a fun game to be part of.

“In the first half we executed well on offense, got good looks, and pushed the ball which we like to do. In the second half we slowed down [on offense] but some of that was because of Plymouth. Our shots weren’t falling and a lot of that goes to Plymouth which played good defense,” said Frohling.

“Down the stretch we executed and knocked down free throws. We made shots in the second half when we needed to. It was a team effort.”

Kuhn led PHS in assists with five. Mason Guell had a team-high four steals. Derek Schweiger led in rebounds with nine.

Petrie paced Falls in boards with 13. Krist handed out a team-high four assists.

Schultz saw bright spots in his team’s play.

“I felt our players showed a lot of versatility. We were without one starter, Adam Smith [junior guard], due to injury and we were in foul trouble in for a large portion of the game,” he said.

“Players had to step up and step in at many different positions and roles, and for the most part did well. This is very encouraging for the future. Mason Guell and Cade Knaus did a tremendous job providing solid games coming off the bench. Matt Richards and Derek Schweiger displayed great hustle diving for loose balls.

“First games are always ‘building block’ games. We definitely have many things to work on which most teams do this time of the year,” added the PHS coach.

JUNIOR VARSITY GAMES

The Plymouth JV No. 1 team rolled to a 73-38 win, keyed by a balanced attack.

Joe Steinhardt, Aiden Reilly, Sam Shutter and Michael Troka led the PHS scoring with 10 points each. Nick Falls had a team-high eight rebounds and four assists.

Connor Spielvogel paced the Falcons’ offense with 14 points.

In the JV No. 2 game, the Panthers were victorious, 41-32. Joel Williams hit 17 points to lead PHS and Ben Olsen added 11.

Olsen had a team-high six boards. Brandon Beeck played well in reserve for PHS, said coach Scott Richards.

Langdon Thiel and Benjamin Behling were the Falcons’ top scorers with six each.


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