Keenburg boys, Hunter girls claw their way to victory in Tiger tussle

By Wes Holtsclaw

   It was the battle of the Tigers last night at Keenburg Elementary, and the orange and black came away with a big 55-48 victory over the Hunter Tigers.
   Led by two strong double-digit performances from Daniel Garner and Cody Marley, who scored 23 and 18 points, respectively, the Tigers overcame a four-point deficit in the fourth quarter to take the win.
   "I knew they were coming in without their big boys," said Keenburg coach Scott Heaton. "We got within three points the last time we played.
   "I'm excited with the win over a big school like them, but we've got a big room for improvement. Hunter has a great coach, and they came in here playing good."
   Hunter also had solid performances from Hunter Taylor (19 points) and Nick Papantoniou (12 points). Papantoniou fouled out early in the third quarter against Keenburg after boosting his team to a lead.
   "Keenburg played great out there tonight," said Hunter coach Mike Dorsey. "Marley and Garner were the difference tonight. We did good as well out there, I'm proud of our effort."
   Michael Carpenter added nine points for Hunter.
   Hunter 45
   Keenburg 18
   Perhaps a new county record was set last night in the eighth-grade girls nightcap, as the Hunter Lady Tigers defeated Keenburg 45-18 in a game where 30 jump balls were called.
   "That's one thing we practice," joked Hunter coach Tammy Taylor. "But really, we practice going after the ball -- we've always done that. They just ended up with 30 tonight."
   Hunter came out on top overwhelmingly throughout the contest behind the sharp shooting of Sallee Taylor and Logan Wagenseller. Danielle Buck and Brittney Westberry provided solid defense, and Hannah Colbaugh gave the Lady Tigers an outside threat.
   Defense was the main phase of Hunter's game, holding Keenburg to seven first-half points. The officiating got out of hand several times, as a pair of players were injured due to late calls on pileups.
   Katie Harrell and Nanette Mantz pulled Keenburg through the second half, but it wasn't enough to win it.
   "All of the girls did a good job tonight, they worked hard on defense and getting the ball inside," Taylor said. "Danielle Buck stepped up tonight. Sallee Taylor was sick and really cleaned the boards.
   "Logan Wagenseller is an outstanding defensive player and did well. These girls set goals and they want to win. Everybody contributed tonight."
   Taylor led Hunter with 17 points, while Harrell netted 10 for Keenburg.