The 2013-14 basketball campaign has been a mirror image of the 2012-13 season so far. Last year's boys basketball team began its season with three straight losses while participating in a tournament at Central High School.
Those losses were to Fruita Monument, Grand Junction Central and Legacy High School.
The current season has followed the same path as the Panthers have fallen to Fruita Monument, 59-52, Central 55-42, and Grand Junction 50-22, and have a record of 0-3 to start this season.
For Von Mitchell and his Panthers, there were some bright spots, though not enough to keep a smile on his face.
The Panthers had decent starts in two of their games and held leads of 21-19 against Fruita and 23-19 against Central at halftime.
Pressure from the Wildcats and Warriors in second-half play led to the demise of the Panthers. Against Grand Junction, the Panthers were mostly out-shot and out-quicked.
Coach Mitchell wasn't too surprised by some of the miscues his Panthers accumulated in the three days of play. After Thursday's loss to Fruita, Mitchell acknowledged there were some mistakes made and the shooting wasn't as prolific as he would like to see it. His definitive comment for the game was, "We're just three days old." By the time the Panthers had assembled their 2013-14 roster (after the football athletes had been evaluated and placements made), there wasn't too much time to prepare for the start of the hoops season.
Expect the mistakes and learn from them as the early season contests are being played is a thought Mitchell holds for now. He knows the Panthers will get better.
FMHS 59, Delta 52
Delta was sharp in the early going against the Wildcats and built a 14-10 lead after the first eight minutes of action.
Second-quarter play was a 9-7 swing for the Wildcats, with Delta holding a 21-19 lead at the break.
The Panthers were strong again in the third quarter as they outscored Fruita 18-13, building their lead to 39-32.
After that, Fruita gained momentum with a pressure game that netted them a 27-13 advantage down the stretch for the win. Eian Baier paced Delta's offense with 14 points while Ryan Whiteside and Jonny Ponce contributed 11 each in the losing effort.
Tyrelle Peterson scored 12 points to lead Fruita's offense.
One of the deciding factors in the game was the free throw shooting percentage turned in by the Panthers. Delta scored only 12 of 30 charity tosses for 37.5 percent.
Central 55, Delta 42
A 16-point effort from Whiteside wasn't enough for Delta as the Panthers played to a 23-19 lead against Central by halftime.
As in their opener, the Panthers came out cold in the second half of play and couldn't handle the pressure defense applied by Central.
The Warriors outscored Delta 19-6 in the third quarter to essentially put the game away.
Delta stayed even through the fourth quarter in a 17-13 edge for the Warriors.
Trey Fair was the game's leading scorer with 21 points for the Warriors. Kyle Blair netted 14 points and Tyler Talkington had 10.
GJ 50, Delta 22
Delta had trouble from the start against the aggressive and physical Tigers on Saturday. Shots wouldn't fall and there were those pesky turnovers nipping at the Panthers' heels. Grand Junction eased to the front with a 15-4 advantage by the end of the first quarter.
The Panthers fared little better in the second stanza as they were held to just four points while the Tigers' offense collected 12 points.
A 10-8 fourth quarter boosted Grand Junction's lead by two for a final score of 50-22.
Whiteside's six points were tops for Delta's offense, with Baier next high with five.
Grand Junction's Broderick Robinson earned game-high scoring honors with his 21 points.
Delta's boys were in Cortez Tuesday, Dec. 10 and will take the rest of the week off as they prepare for next week's three-game week. The Panthers are scheduled to play Eagle Valley in Gypsum on Dec. 19 at 7 p.m.
Delta concludes its 2013 schedule on Dec. 20 and 21 with games in the annual Colorado First National Bank Tournament. Both the boys and girls won titles last year.blog comments powered by Disqus