LIBERTY CENTER - Cold Shooting spelled doom for Paulding on Saturday in a 32-29 loss at Liberty Center.

The visiting Panthers hit just 32 percent from the field on 12-37 shooting while also missing all five free-throw attempts, three coming in the fourth quarter, in seeing a brief two-game winning streak come to an end.

“We just couldn’t make a shot in the early going,” noted Paulding head coach Brian Miller, whose squad trailed 7-2 after one quarter. “We had a lot of missed opportunities throughout the game.”

After the rough start, the Panthers battled back to tie the contest at 13-13 at halftime thanks to 3-pointers from Luke Zartman and Casey Agler and it remained even at 25-all through three, with Agler and Zach Gorrell each knocking down 3-balls in the opening eight minutes of the second half.

However, Paulding could muster just two field goals in the fourth quarter in coming up short against a much taller Liberty Center team.

The Tigers, featuring a backline of 6-5 (Isaiah Estelle), 6-4 (Evan Conrad) and 6-3 (Aidan Hammontree), won the battle of the boards 27-20 to overcome a difficult shooting night as well, with LC hitting only 11-36 from the floor for 30 percent.

“Both teams played well defensively, but they made seven free throws and we made zero,” noted Miller. “We told the guys with four minutes left and a tie game we just needed to make one more play than them but we didn’t get it done. Our effort was really good so no complaints there.”

Conrad scored 11 points to pace Liberty Center, which finished 7-16 at the foul line. Wyatt Leatherman connected on a pair of 3-pointers in the third quarter and added a huge long-range bucket in the fourth to finish the game with 10 points for the Tigers, which won for the second time in three days.

Nick Manz had nine points for Paulding while Agler added six for the Panthers, which turned the ball over 13 times compared to 11 by the Tigers.

The loss left Paulding at 3-9 on the season while Liberty Center improved to 5-4.

Paulding 2 11 12 4 - 29

Liberty Center 7 6 12 7 - 32


Zartman 0-1-0-3; Manz 3-1-0-9; Gorrell 0-1-0-3; Foltz 1-0-0-2; Agler 0-2-0-6; Adams 1-0-0-2; Reeb 1-0-0-2; Martinez 1-0-0-2. Totals 7-5-0-29.


Spieth 1-0-0-2; Hammontree 3-0-0-6; Estelle 2-0-1-5; Conrad 3-0-5-11; Leatherman 0-3-1-10. Totals 8-3-7-32.

Reserve Score: Liberty Center, 56-27.