Early lead fades as Paw Paw falls to Dowagiac, 35-29

Butch Hindenach • pawtwice@bloomingdalecom.net

   PAW PAW - Last Thursday evening, the high school basketball season at the Paw Paw gym ended with the Lady Redskins suffering a very intense and spirited  35-29 defeat at the hands of the Dowagiac Chieftains.   
   Dowagiac won three league games this year - all over the Redskins. One deciding factor from thisgame’s statistics is that Paw Paw went to the free throw line six times during the game, while the visitors wore a groove in the floor strolling to the stripe for an amazing 36 free attempts. In the fourth period, Dowagiac put the game away with just one field goal and a lot of charity tosses. 
   Having lost to Dowagiac twice already this season, the home team came out determined to gain their fifth victory, with Ellie Marger hitting a quick triple to start play, followed by a two pointer by sister Kate. Kierra Krogel put in a pair of shots, one on a nice pass from Anna Vavra, and the Paw Paw girls were off to a promising 9-0 start, with one minute left in the first stanza of play.
   A pair of free throws (of course) put the visitors on the scoreboard, and after another Ellie Marger trey and a pair of Vavra free throws, the score stood at 14-2.      
   However, the Chiefs went on a 12-0 run to knot the score, and the teams remained close the rest of the way.  A Morgan Dwyer free toss stopped the Chiefs’ scoring streak and the Paw Paw maintained a small lead until just five minutes remained to be played and the Chiefs took their first lead of the night. The ensuing parade to the  free throw line took over the game. 
   Scoring for the Redskins was well-balanced, though meager. Ellie Marger and Vavra each produced six points. Katie Marger, Lillian Fulcher, and Kierra Krogel added four apiece; Morgan Dwyer, three, and Madison Plangger, in her first varsity outing, two points. 
   Vavra and Krogel led in rebounds with eight each. Katie Marger pulled down six. Vavra added three assists and three steals. Katie Marger led the defensive effort with some aggressive play, including three blocked shots, aided by Vavra and Krogel.

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