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With Southwest Prairie title implications on the line, host Minooka had hopes of putting a dent into Oswego’s conference lead, or at least scaring the Panthers a bit.
But it was Oswego that gave the Indians a rude awakening, defeating Minooka 63-57 Friday night.
Oswego (13-2, 5-0) takes sole possession of first place in the Southwest Prairie with the win.
The Panthers wanted to make a statement early and jumped out to a 10-point halftime lead thanks to 10 points each from Darion Reddick and Elliot McGaughy.
In the third quarter, the Indians cut the lead to eight on Jake Hogen’s three-pointer at the 5:30 mark and it appeared they were getting some momentum. The Indians cut the lead to five with about 13 seconds to play on Adam Alexander’s three-point play. But by that point it was too late.
“I think we have some young guys who were shell shocked at the start of the game, in front of a packed gym,” Hogen said. “But as soon as we settled down we learned we could play with them. It seemed like we couldn’t cut it close enough to get it tied or a lead, because then we could have gotten some momentum.”
Despite the loss, Minooka (8-7, 3-1) managed to outscore the Panthers 38-34 in the second half. It was a stat that made Indians coach Scott Tanaka proud.
“In the second half, we did a better job of attacking,” Tanaka said. “Things went our way and we had almost 40 points in the second half. We more than doubled our input in the second half.”
Darrin Myers led the Indians with 14 points and Hogen scored 13. Perry Jones added seven points.
Reddick led the Panthers with a game-high 23 points and McGaughy chipped in 19 points. Miles Simelton scored 13 for Oswego.