Around the time most basketball teams are looking at next year, summer league and sending players off to their AAU squads, the delayed high school basketball season tipped off.
And not wanting to waste any time, the U-Prep Panthers scheduled Division III heavyweight Pleasant Valley, winners of three of the last four D-III section titles, for its first game. U-Prep, which sits at 1-1 heading into the second week of the shortened season is the Tri Counties Bank Girls Basketball Team of the Week.
The young Panthers were cold in the first half, but kept grinding after intermission and took the lead from the Vikings in the fourth quarter. However, the hot shooting and offensive glasswork from the Vikings allowed them to escape with a 44-34 win over U-Prep. Team captains Jordan McCoy and Kaleia Mizuta each scored eight in the loss.
The following night, in the Northern Athletic League opener against Anderson, the Panthers couldn’t miss en route to a 58-20 win over the Cubs. U-Prep drained nine 3-pointers in the opening half as McCoy led the Panthers with 14. Audrey Jones and Hannah Kirschman each scored nine while Melanie Lindsey added seven.
The Panthers host Yreka on Thursday before a Pleasant Valley rematch on May 17.