JENNINGS — The Doyline Panthers entered the LHSAA playoffs as the #23 seed in Class B and faced the #10 seeded Hathaway Hornets last night.
The Panthers weren't intimidated by the higher seed, as they beat the Hornets, 60-54.
"They were ranked #10, so I guess by definition it was an upset," Doyline head coach Michael Normand said. "But I feel if we play our A game, we can play with most teams. I feel when we play to the best of our abilities, we can play with anybody in Class B."
The first quarter proved to be big in the final picture, as the Panthers out-scored the Hornets, 17-12. The teams played almost even the rest of the way, with Doyline out-scoring Hathaway by just one point.
Lawrence Hester led the Panthers with 21 points and Donnie Brooks scored 12. Trey Jackson added 10.
But more important than Jackson's 10 points, was his defense.
"We knew Hathaway had a really great guard, and we tried to deny him the ball," Normand said. "But he came out and made three long three-pointers on their first three possessions. We made a defensive change and put Trey on him. Trey held him pretty much in check for the rest of the game, and I thought it was the key to the game."
The Panthers will now host a second-round game on Friday night, and again they will play a higher seed. The Panthers will host #7 seed Anacoco at 6:30 p.m.
Another higher seed doesn't faze Normand.
"When it comes to the playoffs, you have to play whoever they put in front of you," he said. "The playoffs get tougher as it goes along, there are no cupcakes in the playoffs."
North Webster Basketball
SPRINGHILL — The North Webster Knights advanced in the LHSAA Class 2A playoffs with a 76-64 win over district rival Evangel Tuesday night.
Montavious Smith led the Knights with 27 points, and Devin White added 16. The Knights will now face #8 seed Winnfield on Friday night.