After beating Adrian 87-55 Friday, the Prairie City boys basketball team rolled past Crane 69-56 Saturday on senior night, winning their league and 20th straight game to wrap up the regular season.
Crane, not one to go down without a fight, scored early and played hard. Midway through the first period, the Mustangs had a 5-point lead.
Cole Deiter, outstanding in his final home game, knocked down five field goals and six out of seven freethrows for a team-high 16 points. The senior notched a staggering 12 rebounds and got 10 of them on the defensive end of the court with two steals and two blocks.
Jojari Field, another one of the Panther’s offensive threats this season, put up 15 points, nailed four field goals and a jumper from the 3-point line while going four of six at the free throw line.
Senior Lucas McKinley piled on 13 points in the contest and nailed three jumpers from the 3-point line, a field goal and hit two out of four free throws while picking up 4 assists.
Sophomore Marcus Judd drained six out of seven field goals for 12 points and grabbed five rebounds on defense and one on offense along with a block and an assist.
Jayden Winegar put up 6 points on three field goals and had two assists.
Head coach Bo Workman said his team started the game slow but made the right adjustments to pull out the win.
The Panthers finished the season 20-1 overall and 9-0 in the High Desert League.
Field said the team knows they still have that target on their back, and that is why they are not taking their success for granted.
“We’ve been here before, and we have a target on our back,” he said. “We’re the team everyone wants to beat.”
The boys have a bye in the first round of the High Desert League Tournament and will play the winner of Thursday’s contest between Adrian (11-11 overall, 5-4 league) and Ukiah/Long Creek (13-7, 6-3) at 7:45 p.m. Friday at Grant Union High School.
The loser of that game Friday will play at 12:45 p.m. Saturday, with the winner advancing to the state tournament.
The winner of Friday’s game will play in the championship game at 5:45 p.m. Saturday, with both teams advancing to state.