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January 10, 2012 8:50 am

Dramatic PHS comeback falls just short

Written by CJ Baker

Panther girls’ basketball players leap with joy from the bench as Kendra Ostrom drains the third of three consecutive foul shots with no time remaining on the clock to force overtime against Mountain View. Panther girls’ basketball players leap with joy from the bench as Kendra Ostrom drains the third of three consecutive foul shots with no time remaining on the clock to force overtime against Mountain View. Tribune photo by Greg Wise

Lady Panthers beat Lyman

There was no time left on the game clock, but even that couldn’t stop a comeback from Powell High School’s Lady Panthers.

After being fouled on a final 3-point try at the end of regulation, senior Kendra Ostrom made three consecutive must-make free throws to tie up the game 30-30 and push the PHS basketball team into overtime against Mountain View.

“Those were big free throws to give us a chance down the stretch,” said PHS head Coach Luke Danforth.

Unfortunately, Mountain View used some points late in the extra period to edge PHS 35-32 in the Friday night road game.

The Lady Panthers (5-4 overall, 2-2 in Class 3A West) rebounded with a 41-31 win in Lyman on Saturday.

“I thought the girls played hard after a long day on the bus Friday and Saturday,” Danforth said, adding, “Both games were defensive battles, but I was proud of the way the girls battled.”

He said turnovers and rebounding were probably the difference in the game against Mountain View.

The Lady Buffaloes (6-6 overall, 2-2 in 3A West) dominated the offensive glass; Mountain View pulled down 21 rebounds on their end while PHS grabbed 19 defensive rebounds.

Powell also had 22 turnovers, their highest total this season.

“I think we tried to force some things,” Danforth said.

While Powell struggled from 2-point range in the game, sinking just three of 22 attempts, they excelled from 3-point distance, making seven of 15 shots.

“That’s a pretty good night of 3-point shooting for sure,” said Danforth.

Ostrom’s late heroics from beyond the arc gave PHS a chance to win it.

Down 30-24 with about 1:20 remaining, Ostrom canned a 3-pointer to halve Mountain View’s lead. After the Lady Panthers came up with a turnover on the other end, Ostrom was fouled putting up a last shot.

That put her at the line with no time remaining. With the crowd getting successively louder, Ostrom made each free throw to force overtime, Danforth said.

“I don’t know that I’ve ever seen that happen. ... The drama was very intense,” he said, calling the moment “straight out of ‘Hoosiers.’”

In overtime, the Lady Panthers got a jumper from Kadi Cooley, but saw Mountain View get a lay-up and free throw in the final seconds to close things out.

Danforth said there were a lot of positives to take from the game.

“It’s nice to know that we’re right up there with them and if we play better next time, I like our chances,” the coach said.

Ostrom led with 14 points. Alyssa Hildebrand and Tess Mitchell each added six. Becky Dent added four and Kadi Cooley scored two points.

Against Lyman (1-8, 0-4), the Lady Panthers evened out the rebounding totals and helped hold the Lady Eagles to just 25 percent shooting.

Lyman got out to a 6-0 lead, but PHS rode a 17-point second quarter to take a 24-14 lead to the half. Powell made the 10-point advantage stand up in the second half.

“We did a better job on both ends rebounding and balanced contributions from everyone helped contribute to a strong team win,” said Danforth.

Eight Lady Panthers scored.

Hildebrand (11 points) and Mitchell (10) each broke into double digits for PHS. Dent scored six and led the team with nine rebounds. Ostrom and Amy Danforth each scored four. Shawnea Harrington added three points, while Cooley scored two and Brooke Lensegrav one. Dent and Cooley each had five assists.

Powell will take on conference-leading county rival Cody High School (7-3, 4-0) on Friday at 5:45 p.m.

“Cody is playing well and we are looking forward to the challenge and playing in front of our home crowd supporters,” Coach Danforth said.

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