Panthers play well in losses

Posted 12/11/18

The Powell High School Panthers opened the boys basketball season by playing strong against some of the toughest competition in the state.

Unfortunately, they do not have any wins to show for …

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Panthers play well in losses


The Powell High School Panthers opened the boys basketball season by playing strong against some of the toughest competition in the state.

Unfortunately, they do not have any wins to show for their strong play at the East-West Classic in Buffalo over the weekend.

Powell opened the season Friday with a 62-55 loss to Pinedale, then lost to second-ranked Rawlins 61-57 on Saturday afternoon before falling 63-53 to top-ranked — and defending state champ — Buffalo on Saturday night to end the classic.

“Not the results that we wanted losing all three, but [as for] the performance, I felt we played with some of the top teams very well,” PHS head coach Chase Kistler said. “We had a chance in all three games to win. We got better from the first game to the third. I’m proud of how our team competed in all three games, never gave up and played hard every game. We have a lot of positives and playing three good teams really highlighted what we can improve on.”

Pinedale 62, Powell 55

The Wranglers used a strong second quarter to seize control of Friday’s contest, then held off a strong Powell comeback to take the season-opening win over the Panthers.

Pinedale outscored the Panthers 19-4 in the second period to take a 27-15 edge to the locker room, but Powell chipped away in the third quarter and trailed by 11 (44-33) entering the final period.

“We dug ourselves a hole,” Kistler said. “We had 10 turnovers in that [second] quarter alone, [but] I was impressed with how our guys fought back and didn’t give up. We held their leading scorer to 12 [points], which is way below his average.”

Landon Lengfelder led the Panthers with 18 points, while Jesse Brown added 10. Carson Heinen led Powell with 10 rebounds and four assists, while he and Dalton Woodward each blocked two shots.

Rawlins 61, Powell 57

The second-ranked Outlaws seemed to have Saturday’s game in hand after turning a 36-30 halftime edge into a 53-38 lead entering the final period. However, the Panthers used a strong fourth quarter to make a comeback, outscoring Rawlins 19-8 in the final eight minutes to nearly pull off the upset.

“We had three starters on the bench with two fouls each in the middle of the first quarter, but the team held their own as best as they could,” Kistler said. “Again, we had a chance to win that game.”

Woodward led Powell with 14 points, while William Preator added 13 and Brown finished with 11. Heinen added nine rebounds, while Woodward had seven. Kaelan Groves had four steals to go with seven points.

As a team, the Panthers shot 40 percent (20-for-50) from the field and outrebounded Rawlins 35-28.

Buffalo 63, Powell 53

The Panthers played neck-and-neck with the top-ranked team in Class 3A on Saturday night, trailing the host Bison by three points with less than two minutes to go before fading some at the end.

“We played probably our best game against Buffalo in terms of team play,” Kistler said. “Offensively we shared the ball, the seniors started stepping up, and again we had a chance to win that game. We had a costly turnover with a minute and 30 seconds when we were down by three points that stalled our momentum. In all, not the wins we were wanting — but I did see a lot of positives to build on.”

Aaron Thiele had 20 points to lead Buffalo, while Luke Glassock added 18 and Tyce Dahlberg finished with 11. Powell’s stats were not available at press time.

The Panthers will seek their first win of the season this Friday when they head to Cody for a 7 p.m. tipoff. Like Powell, the Broncs started the season 0-3 over the weekend.

“Cody and Powell is a rival game, so you never know what is going to happen,” Kistler said. “They [Cody] are a good team and coached well. It’s hard to get a win on their home court, but we are still focused on doing what we need to get better at to get ready for our conference games.”