Parkway's Bailey Bates (23) turns up the floor with the basketball during the Panthers' 33-17 win at Elida on Tuesday evening. (DHI Media/Joe Dray)
Parkway's Bailey Bates (23) turns up the floor with the basketball during the Panthers' 33-17 win at Elida on Tuesday evening. (DHI Media/Joe Dray)
ELIDA — It has been two decades since the Parkway Lady Panthers won 10 or more games in a season. Tuesday night they had an opportunity to reach that milestone, as well as go above .500, when they faced the Elida Bulldogs at the Fieldhouse.

Parkway’s defense was impenetrable as they knocked off Elida, 33-17.

The Lady Bulldogs kept up with the Panthers in the first quarter. Sydney Crouch had a pair of buckets for Parkway in the opening minutes of the game and lead her team with 14 points overall. The score was tied at 6-6 for nearly three minutes before Claire Eichler hit a shot under the basket to give Parkway an 8-6 lead at the end of one.

The Panthers defense was on full display in the second quarter. They allowed only 2 points and forced 5 Elida turnovers. The Bulldogs couldn’t buy a basket, and Parkway capitalized on every missed opportunity. The Panthers had no trouble moving the ball, and that resulted in 4 of 5 starters putting points on the board. They ended the half on a 9-0 run and led at the break, 17-8.

Parkway continued the onslaught in the third quarter and held Elida to 3 points. Crouch hit a three from the right wing midway through the quarter to sink any hope of a comeback for the Bulldogs. She sparked a 9-0 run by the Panthers. Haley Hawk got in on the action as well, she contributed 4 points while on the scoring streak and finished with 8 points in the game. The combination of Hawk and Crouch in the low post shut down any chance of an easy shot for Elida. They were forced to shoot from the perimeter and beyond the arc, where they went 0-for-9. Parkway closed out the third quarter with a 16-point advantage at 27-11.

Despite four turnovers in the fourth quarter, Parkway controlled the final eight minutes of the game. Elida standout Shyah Wheeler was held in check by the Panthers outstanding work in the paint. She finished with 8 points and shot only 21 percent from the field.

Parkway head coach Linda Hawk was happy with her team’s accomplishment.

“We haven’t won 10 games since back in the nineties, so I’m really proud of the girls,” Hawk said.

She was also pleased at how they stopped Shyah Wheeler all game.

“We knew we had to keep tabs on her. We needed to know where she was at all times, and the girls did a really good job of keeping track of her on the court. We also had to keep them off of the boards because they are an aggressive team,” Hawk added.

Parkway advances to 10-9 (2-5 MAC) while Elida slips to 6-13 (2-5 WBL).

***

PARKWAY (33)

Sophia Miller 1-5 0-4 2, Sydney Crouch 6-10 1-2 14, Bailey Bates 1-8 1-3 3, Leah Harshman 1-4 0-0 2, Claire Eichler 2-3 0-2 4, Haley Hawk 4-10 0-0 8, Total 15-40 2-11 33

ELIDA (17)

Amira Freeman 2-7 0-0 4, Hayleigh Bacome 0-7 2-2 2, Destiny Owens 1-9 1-4 3, Erika Suever 0-1 0-0 0, Brooke Reese 0-1 0-0 0, Cienna Kuhn 0-7 0-0 0, Shyah Wheeler 3-14 2-2 8, Amiah Jones 0-4 0-2 0, Alissa Cuffy 0-3 0-0 0, Total 6-51 5-10 17

Rebounds: Parkway 27, Elida 27

Turnovers: Parkway 16, Elida 13

Score by Quarter:

Parkway 8 9 10 6 -33

Elida 6 2 3 6 -17

(JV)

Parkway 4 9 5 2 -20

Elida 11 5 19 6 -43