Mt Pleasant News

Wash Journal   Fairfield Ledger
Neighbors Growing Together | Sep 18, 2018

Panther girls eliminated in Keokuk

Mt. Pleasant falls on the road in regional tournament, Batey scores 17 in loss
Feb 15, 2018
Photo by: Andy Krutsinger Kalynn Batey drives past a Keokuk defender during Wednesday night's regional tournament loss.

By Andy Krutsinger, Mt. Pleasant News


KEOKUK — The Mt. Pleasant girls couldn’t generate enough offense on Wednesday night against a stingy Keokuk defense. The Panthers dropped their regional first round game 48-39, ending the 2017-18 girls’ basketball season for Henry County.

The Panther girls had their backs against the wall all game. The Chiefs won the first quarter 14-6 and had Mt. Pleasant playing from behind for the majority of the game.

Mt. Pleasant had just two scorers, Kalynn Batey and Sadie Carrasco, in the first quarter, but the offense was able to spread the ball around better in the second quarter.

Five Panthers scored in the second period. Batey led the way with six points, which gave her 10 at the half. Keokuk, however, was able to outscore Mt. Pleasant 14-13 in the period and took a 28-19 lead into the break.

Mt. Pleasant instantly cut the lead down to three points in the third quarter. Isabel Ashton kicked things off with a corner three-poiner, and the Panthers went on a 6-0 run to cut it to 28-25.

The Keokuk defense tightened back up, however. The Chiefs gave up just three more points in the second quarter, outscoring MPCHS 9-3 to stretch the advantage to 37-28 with one quarter remaining.

“We just kind of changed our offense a little bit and tried to do a little more to control the tempo,” Coach Curt Watson said about the third period. “It seemed to work, but then we made a couple turnovers and let them creep the lead back up.”

The Panthers could never get the lead back down to one posession. Keokuk was able to hit their free throws down the stretch and matched the Panthers 11-11 in the final eight minutes to hang on for the win.

Batey finished the night with 17 points to lead the Panthers. Maddie Williamson had nine points. Carrasco finished with six. Ashton had five and Elli Liechty scored two.

Mt. Pleasant finished the year 11-11. The Panthers will lose two seniors to graduation, Batey and starting point guard Taylor Murray. After the game, Coach Watson talked about how his two seniors helped him in his first year as a head coach.

“They both know how valuable they are to me, and our program,” Watson said. “I’ve coached Taylor for three years now (and) I couldn’t ask for a more dedicated athlete. We ask Kalynn to do so much for us. I just wish we could get a couple of red shirt years for a Kalynn and Taylor to come back.”

Keokuk advanced to the regional semifinals on Saturday, February 17, at 7 p.m., where they will face Fairfield on the road. Washington knocked off Ft. Madison 49-12, and will play at North Scott in their semifinal game.

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