Knoxville BB

Knoxville's Tara Uitermarkt (left), Marley McKay (center) and Maggie Wilkins (right) are introduced before a game earlier this season.

CENTERVILLE — It may have been the biggest regular season game for both teams this season as Knoxville traveled to Centerville for a battle between the top two teams in the South Central Conference. The Panthers would hand the Redettes their first loss of the season, coming away with a huge 43-37 win on the road.

Centerville claimed the first meeting in Knoxville, earning their first win over the Panthers since 2011 after losing 12 straight. Knoxville was egger to get revenge and do it on their opponent’s home floor.

The first half played even with the two teams tied at 12 after one quarter before Knoxville gained a 23-21 lead going into the break.

The Redettes would hold Knoxville to seven points in the third quarter to grab a 33-30 lead, setting up a big final eight minutes of action.

Knoxville locked in and shutdown the Centerville offense in the fourth quarter while hitting free throws down the stretch to outscore the Redettes 13-4 in the final stanza and come away with the victory to earn a share of the SCC lead with three conference games remaining.

Knoxville held Centerville to 30.2% shooting from the floor and just 5-of-21 from deep while forcing 17 steals. Centerville was led by Claire Mathews’ 10 points. Mathews eclipsed the 1,000 point mark in the game, becoming just the fourth Redette to reach the milestone.

Maggie Wilkins had another huge effort to lead the Panthers to the win. The fourth-leading scorer in the state finished with 29 points on 10-of-14 shooting from the floor, 3-of-4 from three and 6-of-8 from the line to go with seven rebounds, one assist and four steals.

Marley McKay added four points, eight rebounds and five steals while Tara Uitermarkt was also tough inside with four points, six rebounds and four steals.

Knoxville (11-3, 8-1 SCC) hosts Albia (4-11, 2-8 SCC) on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.

Colin Peters can be reached at 641-672-2581, by email at cpeters@oskyherald.com or on Twitter @ColinPetersOH.

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