BY RYAN OSIER | MIRROR SPORTS —
Springfield 65, Maumee 49
After a two-week layoff and two starters being off for three weeks, the Panthers got back to playing – visiting Springfield on February 8. The Panthers lost 49-65.
“I’m proud of my team. I love my team. We had a month off in December and then we just got back from a two-week layoff. Plus we have had several kids miss more than that. Our kids just love playing basketball. Our five starters have only played five games together. I love this team,” coach Ryan Osier said.
“Now we are attempting to play eight games in 13 days to end the season and allow these kids as many games as possible, so we coach on the fly. We make a lot of in-game adjustments, but most importantly we are a family and having fun.”
Leading the Panthers in scoring was Cole Graetz with 17 points (six rebounds), Michael Pacer with 15 points (10 rebounds and three assists), R.J. McCoy Jr. with nine points and Reed Gieger with six points.
Sylvania 79, Maumee 31
Maumee went up against Northview on February 9.
Northview’s 2020 ALL-Toledo Player of the Year Sean Craig scored 26 points and nine rebounds in only three quarters of play.
Northview just put a showing of pure basketball on display, defeating Maumee 78-31. Northview made 72 percent of their shots and played an excellent game.
“Our team played their hearts out the whole game. They just went up against a true beast in Northview. We played hard and battled – I was proud of that. Mistakes are bound to happen,” Osier said.
“Missed shots are inevitable, as I believe we shot under 30 percent for the game, and they shot over 70 percent. But it is good to be on the court, and we are a family,” he said.
“Due to COVID, Maumee’s schedule is even more difficult than in previous years. Maumee has now played eight of its 10 games against D-1 competition. No other team in our district (Lake District) can make that claim. Eighty percent of our games are against D-1 schools. Other teams in our district have as low as zero games against D1 and maybe two or three games this year. Not an excuse but a reality. Therefore, I love that our boys lace them up and play hard.”
Maumee was led in points by Cole Graetz with 15 points and Michael Pacer with another 10 points and 8 rebounds.
The Maumee JV team improved to 8-2 with a comeback win.
Napoleon 55, Maumee 32
In a battle of NLL foes, Napoleon beat Maumee 55-32 on February 11.
This was a hard-fought physical contest all night. The Wildcats jumped out to an 11-0 lead to start the game and ended the first quarter with a 20-9 advantage.
In the second quarter, the Panthers played excellent defense and only gave up two points the whole quarter. However, the Wildcats also played very good defense and only allowed the Panthers to score five points.
In the second half, the Panthers stayed within eight points most of the third quarter. Then Napoleon went on a 26-13 run to capture the victory.
“We play very hard and physical. We are starting to believe in our offense, however, when you shoot under 40 percent of dog shots (inside the paint) and Napoleon shoots 65 percent of those shots, it is hard to overcome. I am very proud of our team and the team bonding,” Osier said.
“Our defense played well during the second and third quarters as the Panthers held Napoleon to two points for almost two quarters (starting in the first quarter and going through a good part of the third quarter). However, Napoleon also played excellent defense, only allowing us to score six points,”
“Overall, our shooting has to get better. Our schemes on offense have to be crisper and we have to be committed to running our stuff,” he said
“I love this team. They keep getting back up when they get hit to the ground. They do not stop. They are frustrated, but they are learning to come together. These losses hurt. However, when a player is down or frustrated, we have great leaders stepping up and lifting each other up.”
“The bottom line is we have a difficult time scoring. We get decent open looks and we just have to learn to finish. But the effort, the passion, and the commitment is there. I love these guys,” he said.
Leading the Panthers in scoring was Cole Graetz, Michael Pacer and R.J. McCoy with seven points each.
The JV team played a very good Napoleon team and beat them. JV improves to 9-2.