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Girls basketball: Panthers fall to Prescott

ELLSWORTH - Ellsworth's hustle, drive and energy kept the Panthers in contention with Prescott for much of Friday's Middle Border Conference contest.

They had the rebounds, steals, bruises and floor burns to show for it.

Then Prescott's top players emerged in the fourth quarter to lead the 12-1 Cardinals to a 50-38 victory.

Ellsworth took a 31-28 lead at the start of the fourth quarter after Shannon Campbell sank her third 3-point shot.

However, the Panthers did not score another field goal for the rest of the game. Their remaining points came at the free-throw line. The Cardinals went on an 8-0 run to retake the lead and the home team never came closer than three points. 

"We got away from doing what worked for us for three-and-a-half quarters," Ellsworth head coach Dave Berg said. "It's been the story of our season so far. Once we fell behind, you could feel the tension and anxiety rise in the girls and they started to feel like they had to make the play on their own to win the game."

Ellsworth spotted Prescott a 9-0 lead in the first quarter but caught a break when the Cardinals' top player, Kaycee Charette, sat out much of the first and second quarters due to foul trouble. The Panthers went on a 16-0 run and led at halftime 21-16.

Prescott's fourth-quarter surge was powered by the game's leading scorer Alyssa Krings. She scored 10 of her 19 points in the final quarter. Teammate Brittany Jilk scored half of her 12 points in the quarter as well.

"Prescott's a very good team and their best players came through for them when they needed them," Berg said.  "Our kids played their hearts out but it just wasn't enough when their best players stepped up the way they did."

Campbell led the Panthers with 17 points and Carlie Melstrom finished with seven points.

Prescott improves to 6-1 in the league to stay a half-game out of first place. Ellsworth falls to 4-8 overall, 2-6 in the MBC. The Panthers are at Lake City on Monday.