JOHN CURTIS - Daily Union Sports Editor
SHELBYVILLE, IL. — Pana came to Shelbyville for the Annual Mid-State Trophy game on Tuesday night and took home the prize, 53-38.
Pana played nearly perfect basketball in the 1st period. They missed their first shot of the game, then made the next eight,including back-to-back 3-pointers from Dylan Hudlin, plus a pair of free throws from Metzger. Kircher came off the bench and scored twice.
Pana's man-to-man, "in your jock" defense stymied the Ram offense, producing badly missed shots and few rebounds.
Down 14-0, Ram center Brody Bence scored off his own missed put-back to get the Rams on the board. But, when Pana went on a 6-0 run, Shelby coach Mike Steers pulled the starters and put in a cadre of JV players.
With :02 left in the 1st, Devin Peterson inbounded the ball to a cutting Luke McConnell for a finger roll at the hoop, 20-4.
Tyler Hendryx forced a Pana turnover to start the 2nd. Then he forced a jump ball. Cwenton Williams put up a shot and was bumped, but no foul was called. Peterson then stole the ball and scored, 20-6.
Pana scored, then Williams stole the ball at the Pana end. Williams defense forced a miss and McConnell grabbed the rebound. Zahradka scored on a fast break and converted a 3-point play at the line. The Ram JV brought energy, but couldn't score.
Coach Steers put the Ram varsity back in, down 25-6 with 5:17 left in the half. Tucker Schwengel drove into the lane and hit a short jumper, 25-8. Kircher answered with a 3. Schwengel put up another short jumper, but was bumped and missed, no call. Bence was hacked and went to the line, making 1-of-2.
Nate Standerfer drove and picked up a foul. He made both and the Rams were in double digits the half, 28-11.
After scoring 20 in the 1st Pana was held to eight points in the 2nd and just nine in the 3rd. The Rams carved into the lead in the 3rd with a 16-9 run.
Pana scored on a drive and Bence responded with his own, 30-13. Schwengel stole a ball, but the Rams still missed. Kyle Gibson stopped and popped for a Pana two. They upped the lead to 21 points, 34-13.
From there, Shelby went on a 14-3 run to finish the period. Hendryx dribbled and popped a two. Jake Keown then got the ball to Hendryx in transition for a lay-up. McConnell got an offensive rebound and got it to Peterson for a short jumper.
On defense, Hendryx poke a ball and forced a travel. Standerfer finally dialed up a basket from long distance. Bence then avoided a near-steal and stopped and popped a two to make it 10-point game with 1:15 in the half, 34-24.
Krcher made a put-back for his ninth point of the half and Robbie hester split a pair at the line for a 13-point lead with 28 seconds left in the 3rd. Spencer Shadwell got the ball in the Ram half-court and spotted up for a 3. Pana ran at him, Shadwell faked, stepped to the left and then nailed the triple with :01 on the clock, 37-27.
The Rams were dead in the water in the 1st, but they fought back and got the game to within 10 points heading into the 4th.
The Rams couldn't make up ground quick enough. Hudlin scored, then Bence scored. Gibson then posted up for two. The ball went loose at the Ram end and it was like a greased pig, as players from both teams attempted to pick it from the moving scrum. Pana got possession, but the Ram man-to-man defense forced a turnover.
The Rams had the ball at their end for a full minute, before Standerfer struck again fromthe arc, getting the deficit under ten points with 5:00 left in the game, 41-32.
Shelby wouldn't get any closer, as Pana held them off. They took turns scoring, until Gibson scored in transition to Pana up 13 with 2:55 remaining. Bence scored in transition with 2:10 left, 49-38.
Zahradka made two free throws and then a bucket with 30 seconds left to cap the 53-38 score.
Pana 53, Shelbyville 38
Ram stats: Bence 11 (5 FGs, 1/2 FTs), Standerfer 8 (2-3 pt FGs, 2/2 FTs), Hendryx 6 (2 FGs, 2/2 FTs), Shadwell 5 (1-2, 1-3 pt FGs), Peterson 4 (2 FGs), McConnell 2 (FG), Schwengel 2 (FG). Team FGs 15. 3-Pointers: 3 (Standerfer 2, Shadwell). Team FTs 5-of-6.
Pana stats: Zahradka 13 (5 FGs, 3/3 FTs), Gibson 12 (5 FGs, 2/2 FTs), Hudlin 10 (2-2s, 2-3 pt FGs), Kircher 9 (3-2s, 1-3 pt FGs), Metzger 4 (FG, 2/2 FTs), DeClerck 2 (FG), Clark 2 (FG), Hester 1 (1/2 FTs). Team FGs 21. 3-Pointers: 3 (Hudlin 2, Kircher). Team FTs 8-of-9.
Shelbyville and Pana JV played to a 54-54 tie and went into overtime, before Shelby came back and won, 65-63, even as a Pana half-court shot, at the buzzer, bounced off the rim, bounced on the rim, again, and caromed off.
Cwenton Williams, Devin Peterson, and Brett Peifer led Ram JV through regulation with 15, 14 and 12 points, respectively. Beeson led Pana with 19 points in regulation and McLeod with 15.
Shelby led 54-53 with time winding down in regulation, but Pana split a pair at the line, 54-54. Peterson had a 3-point heave at the buzzer with contact, but no foul was called.
In the 3:30 OT, Pana scored twice, 58-54. Peterson had a back cut two, two free throws and Foster one, for the 59-58 Ram lead. Pana scored and made a free throw, 61-59. Zach Williams stole a ball and Foster went high for an offensive rebound, then scored for the tie, 61-61.
Pana made two free throws, 63-61 with 28 seconds left. Tice Robinson splita pair of free throws, 63-62. Pana was fouled with 18 seconds left, but missed both free throws. On the miss, Shelby pushed the ball.
With :09 left Zach Williams caught a long pass and banked ina shot near the base line, 64-63 Rams. Pana missed a shot and Foster got the rebound. He was intentionally fouled with :01 seconds left. He made 1-of-2 shots, 65-63. The Rams got the inbound at the Pana end and threw a half-court length pass to kill the clock. The ball was intercepted at half-court and thrown at the rim with the buzzer sounding. It caromed off and Shelby JV won.
Shelbyville 65, Pana 63
Ram stats: Peterson 19 (7-2s, 1-3 pt FGs, 2/5 FTs), C. Williams 15 (7 FGs, 1/2 FTs), McConnell 12 (5 FGs, 2/3 FTs), Peifer 10 (5 FGs), Foster 6 (2 FGs, 2/4 FTs), Hendryx 2 (FG), Robinson 1 (1/2 FTs). Team FGs 28 (1-3). Team FTs 8-of-19.
Pana stats: Beeson 19 (5-2s, 2-3 pt FGs, 3/4 FTs), McLeod 17 (1-2, 4-3 pt FGs, 3/6 FTs), Clark 6 (3 FGs), Lin 5 (2 FGs, 1/4 FTs), Miller 4 (2 FGs, 0/7 FTs), Gatons 3 (1-3 pt FGs), Franklin 3 (FG, 1/6 FTs), Kircher 2 (2/2 FTs), Dilley 2 (FG), Trexler 2 (FG, 0/2 FTs). Team FGs 23 (7-3s). Team FTs 10-of-32.