Leader Blues

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

SPORTS>>Panthers blow past Wildcats from long range

By CHAD MATCHETT
Special to The Leader

The Cabot Panthers spread the three-point love around Friday night in a 54-34 win over the North Little Rock Charging Wildcats at Panther Pavilion.

Adam Sterrenberg, Astin Johnson and Jack Bridges each had a pair of threes in the win.

On Tuesday night, Johnson made six three-pointers. Sterrenberg broke out of a short scoring drought to lead Cabot with 25 points. Johnson finished with 14.

Miles Monroe was challenged with sticking to the Charging Wildcats’ best player in Terry Tidwell most of the night. Monroe contributed 8 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals in the win.

“I thought Miles played some great defense on Tidwell,” said Cabot coach Jerry Bridges, whose Panthers improved to 12-4, 2-1 in the 7A Central. “Tidwell is one heck of a player, but our guys did a good job tonight.”

Monroe was often on one side of Tidwell while a fellow Panther would be on the opposite side to bracket North Little Rock’s big man.

While the Wildcats’ leading scorer for the season was being held in check, the same wasn’t true for the Panthers.

Sterrenberg had been dishing out assists the last two games while Austin Johnson was draining three-pointers. This time, it was Sterrenberg who was sinking threes, and he also added a dunk to lead the Panthers in scoring.

“We preach that we want everyone involved, but we knew Adam would be back,” Cabot coach Jerry Bridges said. “The main thing is that he let the game come to him and had a much better shot selection tonight.”

The Wildcats (7-7, 2-1) scored on their first trip down the court, but didn’t again for over six minutes as the Panthers went on a 13-0 run.

Sterrenberg scored 16 points in the first half as Cabot took a 30-15 lead into halftime. Cabot’s defense forced North Little Rock into 12 turnovers in the first half.

“We’ve got experience guards out there, while they are playing some younger players,” Bridges said. “That makes such a huge difference. Take Adam off the team and we’d have a rough time.”

Cabot was one point away from a mercy rule in the fourth quarter when Bridges started emptying the bench. North Little Rock ended the game on a 9-0 to make the score closer than the game.

Sterrenberg’s 25 points led all scorers, while Johnson made a pair of three-pointers on his way to 14 points. Monroe scored 8, while Jack Bridges scored 6, Baker 3 and Clark 1 in the win.