• 39°

Panthers get win on tough day

CHESAPEAKE — The pre-game concerns disappeared once the game began.

While the start of the day proved somber, the Chesapeake Panthers were able to overcome their woes and beat the Huntington St. Joe Fighting Irish 60-46 Tuesday.

First, Chesapeake and the community mourned the death of Sue Vickers who was a big supporter of the school and the athletic program. Her son, Scott, is an assistant coach and former player for the Panthers.

Team members served as pallbearers earlier in the day for her funeral. Panthers’ coach Ryan Davis said her loss will be felt throughout the athletic program.

“She sold tickets to buddy league games, junior high games, and she sold raffle tickets. I don’t think she missed a game since I’ve been here and Mike Curry said they’ve gone to every game for 20 years,” said Davis.

There were more problems for the Panthers as they played without point guard Peter Hintz who missed the game with an ankle injury sustained in pre-game warm-ups.

“We had no idea how we would respond without Peter. To lose your point guard right before the game is tough,” said Davis.

Trent Saunders helped the Panthers overcome the loss of Hintz as he held the Irish’s Nathan Hedrick to just 2 points.

“Saunders did a heck of a job with Hedrick. Holding him to two points was a big boost for us,” said Davis.

Chesapeake led 16-9 at the end of the first quarter and 31-19 at the half.

The defense limited the Irish to 6-of-26 shooting from the field in the half.

Conversely, the Panthers’ Austin McMaster hit his first six field goal attempts as he scored 10 points in the first quarter and 6 more in the second quarter.

The Panthers began the second half with a 12-2 run and led 43-21 with a minute to play in the third quarter.

Trailing 46-28 starting the fourth quarter, the Irish managed to cut the deficit to 10 points, but the Panthers stopped the comeback bid and began to pull away.

Nathan Copley scored 22 points and grabbed 8 rebounds to lead the Panthers. McMaster also scored 22 points and Colin Kennedy had 9 points and 16 rebounds — 12 on the defensive end. Saunders pulled down 7 rebounds.

Joshua Pierson scored 15 points and Aaron Williams 13 for the Irish (12-3).

Hunt. St. Joe 9 10 9 18 = 46

Chesapeake 16 15 15 14 = 60

HUNT. ST. JOSEPH (12-3): Kyle Sheffield 2 0 0-0 4, Aaron Williams 3 2 1-2 13, Phillip Harris 0 0 0-0 0, Joshua Pierson 4 2 1-2 15, Nathan Hedrick 1 0 0-0 2, Charles Lockhart 1 0 0-0 2, Lance West 4 0 2-4 10. Totals: 15 4 4-8 46. Fouls: 18. Fouled out: Sheffield. Rebounds: 29. Turnovers: 13.

CHESAPEAKE (11-3): Nathan Copley 1 4 8-10 22, Patrick Hintz 0 1 0-0 3, Colten Lindsey 0 0 0-0 0, Austin McMaster 9 0 4-4 22, Trent Saunders 2 0 0-1 4, Colin Kennedy 3 0 3-3 9. Totals: 15 5 15-18 60. Fouls: 7. Fouled out: None. Rebounds: 35 (Kennedy 16, Copley 8, Saunders 7). Turnovers: 15. Assists: 16 (Copley 6, McMaster 5). Steals: 5 (Copley 2, McMaster 2, Lindsey 1). Blocked shots: Kennedy 4, Hintz 1.