Wildcats suffer defeat at PC, come up short in tournament

Friday, January 2, 2009

The Wildcats traveled to Pierce City to face the Eagles last week and were unable to prevent their host from dominating the scoreboard and outscoring Cassville in all but one period of game play. The Wildcats ended up losing the match-up 37-68.

The first period was merely a foreshadowing of things to come as the Eagles quickly carved out a 19-8 lead. The momentum continued to build and roll over the Wildcats as the Eagles put up another 25 points in the second half to give them a commanding 44-18 lead going into halftime.

Cassville came out ready to fight and managed to cap off some of the pressure in the second half, as they held the deficit to seven points in the third period and went on to outscore the Eagles 10-8 in the fourth period. Unfortunately it was not nearly enough to bridge the scoring gap and the Wildcats fell to Pierce City in the end.

The Wildcats' offense saw only one player scoring double-digits in the contest, as Josh Lewright was able to sink 12 points for the night. Other Wildcat point-getters were Devin Linenbrink with 8 points, Axl Larson with 7, Nashe Lugeanbeal with 6 and Ricky Vanderpool with 4 for Cassville.

While the Wildcats may have lost the battle in points, they were able to hold their ground on rebounds, pulling down 28 boards while the Eagles only managed two more than Cassville on the night.

Ryan Pace, the leading rebounder for his team this season, added another 11 rebounds to his season total to lead the game.

Other players who were able to clean up the glass for Cassville were Linenbrink, who had five rebounds, and Larson, Lewright and Lugeanbeal who pulled down three apiece.

JV action

The Wildcat junior varsity squad fared much better in the contest at Pierce City, as they met the challenge head-on and ended up walking away with a 54-26 victory over the Eagles.

Vanderpool was the leading scorer for Cassville, tallying a total of 14 points in the game. Other players making a major contribution in points were Evan Stubblefield with 12 points and Linenbrink with 10 points on the night.

The JV 'Cats also dominated in rebounds, bringing down a total of 34 for the evening with Rocky Young leading the way with 10 rebounds. Young also led the team in assists at five.

Tournament action

Last Friday, the Wildcats opened play in the very competitive Blue and Gold Tournament in Springfield against the Willard Tigers.

Coming off their sixth loss of the season at Pierce City, the Wildcats were hoping to finally break into the win column but the Tigers had other plans.

The Wildcats were unable to score more than nine points in any period of play during a defensive battle that Willard won 48-29.Initially, the game was close with the Wildcats down by only 1 point at the end of the first quarter. The deficit began to grow little by little, and as the second quarter came to a close the score was 23-16 in Willard's favor.

The third period was nearly identical as Cassville put only 6 points up on the board while Willard scored 13, giving the Tigers a 36-22 advantage going into half-time. In the final stanza, Cassville scored 7 points to Willard's 12 to leave the final score at 48-29.

Pace, who has currently leads his team in points this season, scored 10 points in the contest to add to his season total of 64 points.

In addition, Lugeanbeal put in 7 points and Larson added 6 points. Kyle Rhea, Chris Smith and Vanderpool contributed 2 points each.

Lewright led the Wildcats in rebounds with a total of nine while Pace came in at a close second, pulling down eight boards for the night.

The Wildcats, coached by Randy Robertson, will travel to Crane to face the Pirates on Friday, Jan. 2, 2009, at 6 p.m.

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