Archived Story

Panthers capture sectional

Published 3:07am Sunday, February 23, 2014

Jim Walker

jim.walker@irontontribune.com

JACKSON — That wasn’t Gatorade the Chesapeake Panthers were drinking. It was Windex.

The Panthers cleaned the glass as they outrebounded the Ironton Fighting Tigers 35-15 en route to a 74-49 win Saturday to claim the Division III sectional tournament.

“It’s a lot harder to shoot a shot when it’s contested and I though we did a real good job of contesting shots and then finishing the play with a board,” said Panthers’ coach Ryan Davis.

Ironton (2-21) tried to speed the game up and wear down the Panthers who lack depth. But Ironton coach Mark LaFon said it was Chesapeake’s size that was the difference.

“We had rebounding at the top of the board. We knew we had to rebound. We wanted to wear them down, but their size just wore on us. You can’t keep giving up rebounds and not get worn out,” said LaFon.

Chesapeake had just eight turnovers for the game. The Panthers also had 15 offensive rebounds of their 35 and limited Ironton to only four offensive rebounds among their 15 total boards.

“It was a great time to step up and play your best game of the year. We’ve been pressed throughout the year. We did a good job of handling it,” said Davis.

Caleb Heffner had 20 points and 13 rebounds to lead the Panthers. Andrew Saunders scored 16 points to go with nine boards. Gage Rhoades had 14 points and Brad Meadows added 10.

Phillip Kratzenberg scored 17 points while Tristan Cox and Joe Bowling added nine points each. Cox had eight rebounds.

Ironton was down 8-6 after a layup by Desmond Young when Heffner had a putback, Nate Smith hit a 3-pointer and Heffner had another layup to put the lead at 15-6.

A short jumper by Cox halted the run and Hunter Klaiber’s layup got Ironton within 15-10. But a layup by Austin Carpenter and a layup by Rhoades just before the buzzer made it 19-10.

Chesapeake opened up a 24-12 lead with 5:56 left in the half after a triple by Rhoades.

Kratzenberg sank two foul shots and hit a 12-footer and Ironton trailed by seven. Ironton outscored the Panthers 6-2 over the final 1:15 of the half including a layup by Young with one second left and it was 32-28 at the break.

Ironton got a layup by Joe Bowling to begin the second half and trailed just 32-30. But the Panthers went on a 12-0 run and it was 44-30 with 4:30 left in the third quarter.

A 14-footer by Bowling ended the run at the 3:47 mark, but the Panthers built a 49-32 lead at the end of the quarter.

Chesapeake built a 55-37 lead with 5:47 to play on a foul shot by Heffner. Cox made two foul shots and Young one as Ironton was down 57-42, but two free throws by Smith and a layup by Heffner gave the Panthers a comfortable 61-42 lead with 3:34 to go.

Chesapeake (15-8) plays in the district tournament at 3:45 p.m. Sunday, March 2, at Ohio University.

Ironton     10     18     4     17 =   49

Chesapeake     19     13     17     15 =   74

IRONTON (2-21): Tristan Cox 2 0 5-6 9, Joe Bowling 3 0 3-3 9, Phillip Kratzenberg 1 3 6-6 17, Desmond Young 3 0 2-7 8, Nate Garred 2 0 0-0 4, Richard Crockrel 0 0 0-0 0, Marques Davis 0 0 0-0 0, Hunter Klaiber 1 0 0-0 2, Logan Gleichauf 0 0 0-0 0, Joe Matkins 0 0 0-0 0, Chad Garris 0 0 0-0 0, Charles Scott 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 15-37 16-21 49. 3-point goals: 3-9. Rebounds: 4-O, 15-D = 15 (Cox 8, Bowling 4). Team/deadball rebounds: None Assists: 8 (Kratzenberg 3). Steals: 1 (Bowling). Turnovers: 16. Fouls: 20. Fouled out: Bowling (4th 5:12), Young (4th 2:22).

CHESAPEAKE (15-8): Nate Smith 0 1 2-2 5, Gage Rhoades 4 1 3-4 14, Brad Meadows 4 0 2-3 10, Caleb Heffner 5 0 10-13 20, Andrew Saunders 3 2 4-5 16, Blake Lester 0 0 0-0 0, Austin Carpenter 1 0 1-2 3, Kolten Webb 0 1 0-0 3, Aaron Thompson 1 0 1-2 3. Totals: 23-51 23-31 74. 3-point goals: 5-14. Rebounds: 15-O, 20-D = 35 (Heffner 13, Saunders 9). Team/deadball rebounds: 3. Assists: 5 (Smith 2). Steals: 9 (Rhoades 3). Turnovers: 8. Fouls: 19. Fouled out: Meadows (4th 2:17).

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