Skins Put The Brakes On Panthers

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For the fifth time this season the Nokomis Redskins would hold their opponent to under 30 points as they would grab win number five on Tuesday evening, Jan. 7.

The Redskins would overcome some early obstacles in the contest to beat the Litchfield Purple Panthers 39-24 in Nokomis. The win would move Nokomis to 5-5 on the season as Litchfield would fall to 7-8 on the season.

Both teams would struggle coming out of the gate in this contest. In the first quarter both teams would have more turnovers than made baskets. The Purple Panthers would finish the first quarter shooting 2-for-8 with five turnovers while the Redskins would shoot 3-for-13 with five turnovers. 

Alex Tosetti would get the scoring started when he connected on a field goal that was set up by a Litchfield turnover, as Carter Sabol would pick up a loose ball and find Tosetti for the opening basket.  

Litchfield would respond with  two baskets to claim an early 5-2 lead as Anthony Boston would grab the first basket and Blake McGill would connect on a three-point field goal that was set up by a big offense rebound by Austin Niehaus. Nokomis would respond with the final four points of the quarter as they would control a 6-5 lead after one quarter of action.

In the second quarter, Nokomis would find a way to increase their one point lead to nine before the quarter would end. The Redskins would find success as they would slow the contest down and begin to control the clock. 

The change of tempo would help the Nokomis possessions end in positive results instead of turnovers. The Redskins would only commit one turnover in the quarter and would put in six field goals. Tosetti, who put in four points in the first quarter, would put in three of the six successful attempts for Nokomis in the second quarter as he accounted for 11 of the Redskins' 20 first half points. 

As Nokomis began to control the contest, Litchfield would continue to struggle. The Purple Panthers would once again commit five turnovers, giving them a total of ten first half turnovers.

The turnovers would also result in Litchfield only having six field goal attempts in the second quarter, giving them 14 attempts in the entire first half. 

Blaine Stewart and Blake McGill would put in both field goals for the Purple Panthers in the quarter and Stewart would add the other two points as he connected on two late free throws. 

The continued struggles for the Purple Panthers would find the visitors down 20-11 at the half. Alex Tosetti would lead all scorers in the half with his 11 points and Blake McGill's two field goals would lead Litchfield with five first half points.

After winning the turnover battle in the second quarter, the Redskins would turn the title over to the Purple Panthers in the third frame as Nokomis committed four turnovers, while Litchfield would commit two turnovers. 

The success of controlling the ball would not benefit the Purple Panthers as it did earlier for the Redskins. Litchfield would once again only put in two field goals for the third straight quarter as Blake McGill and Antony Boston would add the four points to the board for the Purple Panthers. 

Both of the field goals would come after Nokomis started the quarter with a 6-0 run that would build a 26-13 lead. Kendall Knodle would put in a free throw in between McGill and Boston's baskets as Nokomis would have a 27-15 lead after three frames. 

Again the turnover discussion would continue in the final quarter as Nokomis and Litchfield would combine for six turnovers in the quarter as both team would combine for a total of 28 turnovers in the contest. The Purple Panthers would use early quarter success to bring the Nokomis lead down to ten points, 30-20, when Austin Niehaus and Blaine Stewart would both put two points on the board. 

Niehaus would also add four more points in the quarter, allowing him to put six points in the scorebook. 

The ten-point deficit would be as close as Litchfield would get to the lead as Nokomis would end the quarter with a 9-4 run that would secure win number five for Nokomis. 

Alex Tosetti would add four of the final nine points for Nokomis as he would end the contest wit 19 points. Carter Sabol would have the big quarter as he would put in six points, his first basket since the first quarter. Sabol's six points would allow him to finish with eight points in the contest. 

Blake McGill and Blaine Stewart would lead Litchfield with seven points. The loss would drop the Purple Panthers to 7-8 overall, Litchfield will look to get back on the winning track Friday when they host the Vandals in a South Central Conference match-up. 

For Nokomis this would be the fifth time this season they would hold their opponents to under 30 points; all five times would result in a win. They did it again on Wednesday with a 59-24 victory at East Alton-Wood River. A recap of that game and Friday's contest against Lincolnwood at home will be in the Jan. 13 edition of The Journal-News.

January 7 at Nokomis

Litchfield 5 6 4 9 24

Nokomis 6 14 7 12 39

Litchfield (24) - Blaine Stewart 7, Blake McGill 7, Austin Niehaus 6, Anthony Boston 4. Totals: 9 2-2 24.

Nokomis (39) - Alex Tosetti 19, Carter Sabol 8, Kendall Knodle 6, Evan Herpstreith 2, Seth Johnson 2, Nick Mascher 2. Totals: 16 5-8 39.

Three-point field goals: Litchfield 2 (Stewart 1, McGill 1); Nokomis 2 (Tosetti 1, Knodle 1).

Records: Nokomis (5-5); Litchfield (7-8).

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