Panther boys surge ahead in fourth quarter
GLENWOOD — After trailing the entire game, the Creston boys entered the fourth quarter here Tuesday night tied with Glenwood at 47-47.
The Panthers quickly surged ahead in the fourth quarter and held on for the win, 60-52, over Glenwood, ending a two-game losing skid.
Creston improved to 9-2 for the season and 6-1 in Hawkeye 10 Conference play, while Glenwood falls to 5-6 and 2-6.
“That fourth quarter, we went on a little bit of a run there,” head coach Billy Hiatt said. “I thought maybe we were going to pull away, and we did a little bit. Then they started fouling and it turned into a free throw game.”
Creston started the fourth quarter on a 5-0 run thanks to a Colby Taylor 3-pointer and a Briar Evans layup, taking a 52-47 lead.
JJ Hahn ended the run when he got a steal and a layup, plus the foul. After making the free throw, the Panther lead was cut to 52-50. Hahn led all scorers with 23 points.
But Evans answered with an offensive rebound and putback with 2:54 remaining to give the Panthers a four-point cushion, and then Taylor knocked down a jumper to put the Panthers up six.
After Luke Neitzel blocked a Grant May shot, Kainen Somers scored a layup to give Creston a 58-50 lead.
Tyler Jensen made two free throws for Glenwood, and Taylor netted two more free throws for the final 60-52 margin.
Hahn and May, who scored 14 points in the first quarter, gave the Panther fits during the first half.
Hiatt challenged his team at halftime, trailing 39-35, and the Panthers came out and played better defense, limiting May to just two points in the second half.
“It was a pretty uptempo game (in the first half), and the Hahn kid was really giving us fits,” Hiatt said. “We were trying to figure out how to make adjustments at halftime. I really challenged Briar Evans at halftime, and I thought Briar made some good adjustments. He got a little more physical with him and it worked out to our advantage.”
With the Panthers trailing in the third quarter, senior Kainen Somers stepped up and hit a big 3-pointer to draw the Panthers closer to the Rams.
“It was crucial,” Hiatt said. “We were kind of standing around and they switched off of him with the ball. That was one of the times in the game where we needed something and he buried it for us.”
Somers stepped up in a big way, scoring 11 points for the Panthers despite averaging just four points per game so far this season. Somers shot 4-of-4 from the field.
“Kainen, I thought probably, had one of his best games scoring,” Hiatt said. “He attacked the rim hard, which we’ve been waiting to see from him this year. I don’t think he missed a shot from the field. He did a really good job for us. I think he’s capable of doing that, and hopefully that builds up his confidence.”
Hiatt also praised Zach Powers, Jay Wolfe, Ryan Cook and Trey Thomsen for their play coming off the bench in the game. Thomsen, who has started much of the year, came off the bench with Caleb Thompson getting the starting nod.
Creston returns to action Friday at Shenandoah before traveling to Nodaway Valley on Saturday.
GLENWOOD (52) — JJ Hahn 23, Grant May 16, Corey Bertini 7, Tyler Jensen 4, Gage Shatava 2.
CRESTON (60) — Colby Taylor 5 3-4 15, Briar Evans 6 2-2 14, Kainen Somers 4 0-1 11, Luke Neitzel 3 4-5 10, Trey Thomsen 2 0-0 5, Caleb Thompson 1 0-0 3, Jay Wolfe 1 0-0 2. Totals — 22 9-12 60. 3-point goals — Taylor 2, Thomsen 1, Thompson 1. Rebounds — Neitzel 7, Taylor 5, Evans 3, Ryan Cook 3. Assists — Neitzel 4, Somers 3, Taylor 2, Thomsen 2. Steals — Neitzel 2, Taylor 2, Wolfe 1. Blocked shots — Wolfe 1, Neitzel 1.
Glenwood — 22 39 47 52
Creston — 18 35 47 60
The Creston boys junior varsity team fell to 9-2 for the season with a 63-58 loss to Glenwood here on Tuesday.
The Panthers trailed by 17 points at one point in the game, but battled back to within four with about 1:00 remaining, but Glenwood’s free throw shooting was enough to hold the Panthers off.
“I was proud of our effort to fight back and have a chance to win,” JV coach Kritter Hayes said.
Jay Wolfe led Creston with 18 points and seven rebounds, while Alex Nielsen added 14 points and seven rebounds, and Cole Crawford scored 14 points.
Creston (58) — Jay Wolfe 18, Alex Nielsen 14, Cole Crawford 14, Christian Groumoutis 6, Cole Thompson 2, Sam Hartsock 2, Brandon Phipps 2. Rebounds — Wolfe 7, Nielsen 7. Steals — Nielsen 3.
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