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The Suburbanite
  • Lady Panthers closing in on another PAC-7 title

  • The team has compiled an overall record of 13-3 and is 8-1 in league play through Tuesday night. Of the three losses, two have been against state-ranked Wadsworth (12-1) and Canton Central Catholic (10-2).

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  • Manchester’s Lady Panthers keep inching their way closer to their ninth consecutive PAC-7 cage title.
    The team has compiled an overall record of 13-3 and is 8-1 in league play through Tuesday night. Of the three losses, two have been against state-ranked Wadsworth (12-1) and Canton Central Catholic (10-2).
    "We're pretty happy with our season so far," said head coach Tucker Pappas. "We have put ourselves in good position for the league, but we’re still working on correcting some things as we head down the stretch.”
    Top performers for Manchester this season have been sophomore forward Alex Klein, junior guard Kayci Krzynowek and junior forward Karley Dougherty.
    Klein leads the team in scoring and rebounding. She averages 16.6 points and 6.5 rebounds per game. Krzynowek averages 14.6 points, 5.6 assists and 2.9 steals per game. The later two categories are team best. Dougherty is as consistent as they come, averaging 11.9 points, 5.2 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 2.7 steals per game.
    Sophomore Emma Kreakbaum and Brittnni Porter finish the starting five. Freshman Grier Cowles also sees considerable action off the bench.
    One of the most recent wins to fuel the Panthers was against Tusky Valley, where Manchester took the game at 74-47.
    Manchester trailed 20-11 after eight minutes of action but exploded for 30 second-quarter points and never looked back.
    Klein had a big day for the red and black with 22 points on eight of 12 from the floor and four of five from the stripe. She also had eight rebounds, four steals and three assists.
    Dougherty chipped in 20 points, seven rebounds and five steals.
    "We played extremely well after the first quarter," Pappas said. "This was one of our better games we played as a whole.”
    Pappas said the team is young, but players are working to become more experienced.
    "We're still a young team, and our youthfulness still shows. We've been having trouble closing out games at times,” he said. “We build up big leads but let our opponents right back into games. We also need to have more balance offensively instead of having just two or three kids score. The good thing about it is we have kids on our teams willing to listen and learn."
    Boys’ team takes key PAC-7 contest
    After a lackluster start to the new year, the Panthers put together perhaps their best effort of the season to dispose of host Tuslaw 54-40 in a key PAC-7 contest in Massillon on Jan. 11.
    Both teams entered the contest tied for top honors in the conference with 4-1 marks, but the game didn't live up to its billing, as Manchester dominated the game from the onset.
    The Panthers raced out to a 18-6 lead after one and extended their cushion to 30-11 at the intermission. The closest the Mustangs would come the rest of the way was 12 points  (39-27) with 5:05 left.
    Page 2 of 2 - "We came out aggressive tonight," said head coach Gene Schindewolf. "It's something we haven't done our last few games. I felt the big difference was we had two intense practices after the Waynedale loss and got after it.
     "We rebounded well tonight, and got a lot of help from our bench, when we ran into foul trouble. Our depth showed up big. It was a real good win."
     Senior Jamar Dukes led Manchester with 16 points, seven rebounds and three blocked shots . Dukes was six of six from the floor and four of seven from the line.
     Bryan Daily added 14 points, five rebounds and four assists, while Daulton Baksa and Kanyon Collins contributed seven points apiece off the bench.
    The Panthers connected on 21 of 45 field goal attempts (46 percent) and 11 of 21 foul shots (52 percent).
    Manchester (9-5, 5-2) also battled with Canton Timken (7-4, 6-1) on Tuesday night, dropping a 64-52 decision at the Memorial Field House.
    The Trojans led from start to finish, holding a 14-7 advantage after one, up 24-17 at halftime and 52-30 through three.
     The Panthers were without the services of Daily due to illness, and Dukes left the game in the opening half with an injury.
     "It was a tough one," Schindewolf said. "Too many turnovers and missed shots in the first half cost us big time. Bryan (Daily was out, and Jamar (Dukes) sprained his ankle in the first and didn't play the rest of the game, but still no excuses for the loss."