Panthers bottle up Bridge City, 68-53

Published 2:04 pm Tuesday, January 2, 2018

By Caleb Adams

Leader Correspondent


BRIDGE CITY — The Liberty Panthers beat the Bridge City Cardinals with a final of 68-53 in non-district action at Cardinal Gym Tuesday afternoon as the Panthers used a big defensive surge to turn back the Cardinals.

The Cardiinals were lead by Kolten Weeks, who filtered in a game-high 16 points. The Panthers were lead by Jarius Hill with 15 points on the game.

The Cardinals jumped out to an early 9-3 lead but the Panthers caught fire and their full-court pressure wore down the Cardinals as Liberty forced Bridge City into a slew of turnovers.

The Panthers end the first quarter on top of the Cardinals 15-12, but spent the majority of the quarter trailing before closing with a big spurt.. The Panthers went on a seven-point run to go up by three by the end of the quarter. The Cardinals ran into offensive struggles late in the first quarter that they would need to overcome to take the lead back in the second quarter.

The Panthers kept up the pressure in the second quarter and made the lead 34-27 by halftime. Keagan Turner had eight points in the half for Liberty and Jarius Hill had 11 to lead the team. The Cardinals’ leading scorer in the first half was Kolten Weeks with 10 points of his own.

Early in the third quarter it was much of the same for the Cardinals, having trouble on the offensive side while the Panthers continued to find points in the paint from Turner. As the quarter went on the Cardinals fell further behind. Tyler Fregia came in late for the Panthers to put down two back to back threes. As the Panthers Liberty went up 48-40 heading into the fourth quarter.

The Panthers continue to build the lead being up 14 early into the fourth quarter. Hill continued to have success behind the deep arc with 15 points after draining two more threes. The Panthers would close the game out and beat the Cardinals 68-53. The Panthers defense held strong late in the game and was one of the main reasons they nabbed the win as Liberty outscored the Cardinals 20-13 in the final eight minutes.

The Cardinals will look to bounce back to form in time for district play soon.

The Cardinals will visit Tarkington Friday for their final non-district game. Bridge City will open up District 22-5A play Jan. 12 at Little Cypress-Mauriceville.