When the Mountain Grove Panthers entered last week’s The Seymour Bank Winter Classic, they were hoping to reach the championship game to regain a title they held from 2015-2019.
Unfortunately, a semifinals loss to Chadwick in a game featuring 51 total turnovers forced them to the third place contest with Lighthouse Christian Academy.
The Panthers re-focused their energy and dominated the Springfield team, 71-46. Lighthouse only lost to eventual champion Seymour by less than three points in their match-up.
In the third place game, Mountain Grove held a slim six point edge at halftime before outscoring their opponent, 41-22, in the second half to win the game by 25 points.
Kaden Bruce came up big with four 3-pointers in the win and a team-high 25 points. The big game helped Bruce earn a spot on the All-Tournament team.
Jace Dowden had a solid game, scoring 14 points; Bradley Henry added 13 points; Drew Vaughan scored 12 points; Bryce Stenzel had three points; and Hollen Glenn had one point.
In the semifinals, neither Mountain Grove or Chadwick would want to watch video on their contest as the two teams combined to turn the ball over 51 times.
In fact, there were 22 turnovers in the first 9:30 of the contest and 32 total in the first half.
Glenn had seven points and Stenzel added five in the first half as Mountain Grove led Chadwick, 21-18, at halftime.
Bruce found the scoreboard in the third quarter with five points, but an 11-4 run by Chadwick put the Cardinals in front, 33-29, as the quarter expired.
In a game that also featured a ton of foul calls, the Cardinals made 12-of-20 free throws in the fourth to seal a 12-point win.
Glenn led the Panthers with 12 points, two rebounds, two steals and one assist; Bruce tallied 11 points, two steals and one assist; Stenzel had seven points, seven rebounds, two steals, one block and one assist; Henry had seven points, three rebounds three assists and one steal; Dowden had four points, nine rebounds and one steal; while Drew Vaughan had three points, five rebounds and two steals.
In the first round, the Panthers cruised past Lutie, 71-47.
Mountain Grove led 36-31 at halftime before outscoring Lutie, 35-16, in the final two frames.
Eight different Panthers scored in the big win.
Bruce scored a team-high 16 points; both Stenzel and Henry had 11 points; Kyle Penner had nine points; Vaughan scored eight points; Dowden added seven points; Isiah Hellbusch scored five points; and Glenn scored two points.
Statistics are now available for the Panthers’ games played in the Blue & Gold Tournament.
In the loss to Branson, Bruce scored a team-high 21 points. Stenzel had nine, Glenn added seven, Tyson Elliott scored five, Dowden had four, Vaughan added three and Hellbusch scored two points.
In the big win over Houston, Bruce made seven 3-pointers for 34 points. Stenzel made five 3-pointers for 17 points; Henry had six points; Dowden added four points; Payton Shannon scored three points; Trace DeVries and Gabe Linton each had two points; while Hellbusch and Vaughan each had one point.
In the loss to West Plains, Bruce made five 3-pointers for 25 points. Stenzel had 14 points; Elliott added eight points; Dowden had six points; and Henry scored two points.
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