Trojan Basketball Pinks Out Panthers on Senior Night

Not only was Monday night’s game benefiting the American Cancer Society, it was also senior night.


Kennedy Goergen

Coach Dan Vargason strategizes with his team during the Pink Out game. The girls’ pink jerseys were made specifically for this game.

Hana Holtz, Editor

Both the boys’ and girls’ basketball teams faced off against Creston on Monday night as part of a doubleheader at home. Besides having both teams play on the same night in the same gym, it was also Pink Out in support of the American Cancer Society. The girls’ varsity squad rolled up in pink uniforms per the occasion, and many students and community members did the same. To top it all off, AHS was recognizing seniors with involvement in archery, basketball cheerleading, girls’ basketball and boys’ basketball.

For the Pink Out festivities, students and community members could purchase a basketball for $2 in donation to the American Cancer Society. Also in regards to donations, Cass County Health System pledged to give $2 to the American Cancer Society for every point the two varsity squads scored–totaling to $230. Finally, the crowd was able to donate after the girls’ game had concluded in a “minute-to-win-it”-style challenge, in which the American Cancer Society raised over $600.

After the girls’ game wrapped up, senior basketball players Alyssa Ginther, Baylee Newell, Heidi Williams, Sam Granner, Jalen Petersen, Nate Behrends, Chase Mullenix, Cooper Leonard, Zade Niklasen, and Logan Reilly were recognized, along with senior basketball cheerleaders and archers.

In girls’ basketball, Atlantic took on a Creston team that beat them by 17 points earlier in the season. The Trojan girls were always within six points of the Panthers, making the entire game a constant battle for the lead. Early in the second quarter, junior Corri Pelzer splashed in a three-pointer to put the Trojans ahead 19-18. After back-and-forth play, another three–this time from Ginther–placed Atlantic back in front 24-22. Creston would mount a counter-attack and hold the lead at the break, 30-26.

Continued offense from both teams kept the game interesting. Right as Creston looked to gain the momentum late in the fourth quarter, the Trojans rallied and tied the game back up at 58-58, with less than two minutes to go. Fouls would decide the game, as Creston had more opportunities at the free-throw line to capitalize on than the Trojans. The Atlantic girls lost to the Creston Panthers 65-59.

On Senior Night, Ginther and Newell each chipped in 13 points. Williams put up two points, and led the team in rebounds with six.

On the boys’ side of things, the Trojans tipped off with the intention of avenging a one-score loss earlier in the season. Atlantic kicked off with a rapid start–leading 9-2 early in the first. However, Creston would bounce back and take the lead 13-11 at the end of one. The score would even out at 13-13 after Granner made a layup after a steal. Creston would go on to score multiple baskets–but not without a Trojan answer. Petersen pushed the Trojans to the front after he sank a three, making the score 25-22. Still, Creston regained the lead heading into the locker room, 26-25.

The Trojans outscored the Panthers by ten points in the third quarter, reclaiming the lead. As the tables had turned back to the Trojans, Creston’s leading scorer–senior Kylan Smallwood–received a technical in the fourth quarter. With Smallwood spending time on the bench, Atlantic was able to seal the deal on defense and claim the win, 56-47.

In his Senior Night showing, Mullenix led the Trojans with 17 points. Reilly recorded a double-double, as he scored ten points and had ten boards. Petersen netted six points, and Granner and Behrends each added two. Leonard and Niklasen made it onto the floor late in the fourth quarter and grabbed a couple boards between the two of them.

The Trojan girls will trek to Harlan for revenge against the Cyclones on Thursday. The next outing for the Trojan boys is Treynor at home on Friday.