Panthers ground First FlightPublished 10:42am Friday, January 10, 2014
The Northside Panthers picked up their first win in three games at home against the First Flight Nighthawks, 63-41.
“It was ugly, but we got us a win and that’s what we needed to do, get back on the winning track,” said Head Coach Michael Proctor. “They have a really good team. They’re young and really, really good.”
After starting the season a perfect 9-0, the Panthers dropped the first two conference games of the season against East Carteret and Pamlico County. Thursday’s win returned the team back to its winning ways.
First Flight sharpshooter, sophomore standout Jack Konstanzer, kept the Nighthawks in the game early, answering Edrice Adebayo’s dominate inside game with some smooth perimeter shooting. Konstanzer would finish with a season-high 24 points.
Offensive rebounds were virtually nonexistent with Adebayo on the floor, but the undersized Nighthawks’ made the most of each of their early possessions and kept it close. With a team made up of entirely underclassman, holding their own against a Northside team consisting of quick guards, pure shooters and one of the top players in the state was an impressive feat.
“We can shoot the ball better and make better passes. We’re taking quick shots,” said Proctor. “If we moved the ball around, we could shoot a little better. We’re also not hitting foul shots very well.”
Nevertheless, Northside preserved a double-digit lead throughout the second half and kept the Nighthawks from penetrating down low. Pristine outlet passing and points in transition opened up the lead and sealed the victory.
Adebayo would match Konstanzer with 24 points of his own, while senior guard Malik Slade finished with 12 and junior Patrick Moore with 10.
“We just got to shoot better. We defend real well and we do a lot of good things,” said Proctor. “When we get to the playoffs, we just need to go as far as we can if we can make it.”
The Panthers will continue their road to the playoffs when they take on Bear Grass tonight at 7:30.