July 13, 2024

Opening Half Struggles Doom Lady Demons in 42-27 Loss in Great Bend

GREAT BEND, Kan. – Makenzie Premer scored 17 points and had eight steals to lead the Great Bend Panthers past Dodge City. It was a milestone night as well as senior guard Mersadie Spray scored 11 points to eclipse the 1000-point mark for her career.

Dodge City (5-10, 1-3) entered the game off of a tough home loss against Hays on Friday. The Lady Demons had seemed to lose the offensive consistency that made them successful earlier in January. Great Bend (11-5, 2-2) also came into the game fresh off a defeat, having lost to Liberal last time out. 

The game started off strong for the hosts, with the Panthers jumping out to an early 10-3 lead late in the opening quarter. Dodge City appeared to get some momentum back though as freshman guard Emily Gutierrez drained a three right near the end of the quarter to cut the deficit to four after one quarter. 

That positive ending to the first didn’t carry into the second for the Demons though as Great Bend opened the second quarter with a 10-0 scoring run to put Dodge City in hole that they never truly recovered from. At one point, the Panthers were on an 18-2 run in the quarter and ended up outscoring Dodge by 14 to take a 29-11 lead into halftime.

The teams played a fairly even second half with Dodge actually outscoring Great Bend 16-13 the rest of the way but the mountain was too high to climb and they ended up falling 42-27 to drop their second consecutive game. 

The turnovers were the main issue again for Dodge City as they gave it away 24 times in the game, many of which were in the backcourt as Great Bend maintained a full court press for the majority of the contest. Premer was the main catalyst for those turnovers, hounding Dodge’s young guards the second they touched the ball. 

Easha Potts did everything she could to carry the load offensively for the Demons, scoring 14 points while hauling in eight rebounds. Gutierrez played a solid game as well, making two threes and finishing with eight points. Nobody else was able to get into the flow either, as Ashlyn Lembright and Piper Mellinger combined for just two points on 1/7 shooting.

Premer was helped offensively by Spray who continued her excellent season and career with the Panthers as she broke the 1000-point threshold for her career with a bucket in the fourth quarter. The game stopped momentarily so an announcement could be made and she could be celebrated by the hometown crowd. She was also given the game ball and a banner she took a photo holding with the rest of her teammates following the game.

The loss puts Dodge City well behind the pace in the WAC as they fell to 1-3 with the loss at the halfway point of the conference schedule. They play their final non-conference game on Friday against Colby before finishing the season with four straight conference games. 

The Demons will be on the road to take on the Eagles, their game will begin at 6:00 p.m. on Friday and will be broadcast live on Z98 with pregame coverage beginning at 5:40.