Lady Panthers regain lead late, down Eagles

Makayla Mitchell assisted Brenda Cano on a pair of buckets to regain the lead, then completed a three-point play to vault Maxwell High School’s girls basketball team to Thursday’s 29-22 victory over visiting Princeton.

The Lady Panthers trailed by one point entering the fourth quarter, but held Princeton scoreless over the final eight minutes to secure the victory.

“We started out a little bit flat, but the girls came together and played great,” Maxwell coach D.J. Mathis said.

Mitchell was a bucket shy of a double-double, scoring eight points with 10 rebounds and five steals. Her two assists down the stretch were every bit as critical, however.

With Mitchell working in the post, Cano maneuvered herself into open passing lanes and received quick passes that led to the go-ahead points.

The teams had been neck and neck the whole game, as Princeton led by two at halftime and clung to a slim 22-21 advantage going into the fourth quarter.

The Mitchell-Cano rally enabled Maxwell to surge ahead, 25-22, and Mitchell was fouled on a lay-up and nailed her point-after shot to put the game out of reach.

Mireya Ocampo also scored eight points, sharing the team lead with Mitchell, and Alejandra Ruiz battled underneath the basket for 11 rebounds.

Cano and Sarah Fleming both blocked shots for Maxwell, Fleming added six boards, and Cano finished with six points.

Chelsea Laughlin and Karina Partida led Princeton’s offense with five points apiece.
With one tournament remaining, the Lady Panthers improved to 6-2 in their preseason. They recently took first place in Elk Creek, with Cano earning Most Valuable Player honors and Fleming also taking All-Tourney.■