The 2-9 varsity Panthers have been in a slump for two weeks now, however, it’s not by blowouts but many game’s deficit have been below 10 points. The problem the Panthers are facing is playing a complete game of basketball.They will sometimes start out hot in the first period, hit a slump in the second or third periods, and then will control the fourth period, but it’ll be too late at that point, or it’s the other way around and they play a solid first half and fall apart in the second half. This past week, the Panthers traveled to Benjamin Russell on Dec. 10 and lost to the Wildcats 60-56, and then went to Opelika on Dec. 13 to take on the Bulldogs, losing the game by a score of 86-70. They returned home to Smiths Station on the following night to host Dothan but lost that game by a score of 76-67.
During the Opelika contest, the Panthers were a different team from the first and second halves of the game. At halftime, the Panthers were down 39-25 but came out firing scoring in the second half by tying the Bulldogs in scoring at 43-43. Junior guard Donovan Pearman led the team with scoring 24 points; nine FGs, one 3-pointer and was 3-for-3 in free throws. Behind Pearman was senior guard Manoso Foston who had 11 points and junior forward Viczavious Madden with 10 points.
After a close game with the Bulldogs, the Panthers returned home to face the Dothan Wolves, and the game was almost identical to the previous by trailing at halftime 31-25; however, they took over the second half by outscoring the Wolves 22-14 in the third and 28-26 in the fourth, but the late comeback wasn’t enough. The Pearman brothers led the game in scoring. Donovan Pearman had 22 points; eight FGs, one 3-pointer and was 3-for-6 in free throws. Freshman guard Devyn Pearman had 18 points; four FGs, one 3-pointer and was 7-for-10 in free throws. Sophomore forward Tre’Quan Turner finished the night with 10 points.
Up next for the Panthers are home games against the Prattville Lions and the Valley Rams, a makeup from the season opener that was cancelled. The team will take a break during the Christmas holiday before playing in the Columbus Christmas Classic at Jordan High School on Dec. 31.