The Knoxville Panther varsity girls’ basketball team got back into the win column following their only loss this season on Friday night with a big 53-38 victory over Newton at Wells Fargo Arena.
Newton jumped out to an early 10-3 lead against a hands-off Knoxville defense. Meanwhile, the Newton defense was double and triple-teaming the Panthers’ season lead scorer, Katie Keitges.
Knoxville made the adjustments necessary to go into halftime with a 31-23 lead. Defense was the name of the game for Knoxville in the third, as they limited the Cardinals to just one point. The Panthers went into the fourth with a 40-26 lead.
Newton’s fight was getting stronger in the fourth, but the Panthers were able to hold them off. At the end of the game, the Panthers were up 53-28, with most of those points belonging to Maggie Wilkins.
Wilkins shot 60 percent from three-point land and missed only one free throw. She finished with 28 points, two rebounds and a steal. Keitges finished with 14 points, five rebounds, six assists and two steals. She was 8-for-12 from the charity stripe.
Charlee Heffron had six points and two rebounds; Emma Dunkin had four points, two rebounds, an assist and five blocks; Marley McKay had eight rebounds and two assists; Tara Uitermarkt had six rebounds, two assists and two steals and Norah Pearson had a point.
The Panthers travel to Centerville Tuesday night, Jan. 7, for another important South Central Conference matchup. They will host Albia Friday night.