Panthers eye greater success in sectional

Indiana’s boys basketball sectional tournaments start this week, and the Jennings County Panthers are revved up and prepared to improve on their season and compete for a championship.

The Panthers play in the Class 4A Seymour Sectional, which starts Tuesday. Jennings has a first-round bye and will face the winner of the Bedford North Lawrence/Jeffersonville game at 7:30 p.m. Friday in the second semifinal.

Seniors Justin Pettit, Adam Jackson and Matt Cornett said they are looking forward to the tournament and the opportunity to win Jennings County’s first sectional championship since 2005.

“We’re going to compete the best we can because we’re seniors and we’re going to act like it’ll be our final game,” Pettit said.

Jennings County entered last Friday’s regular season finale against Franklin with an 8-13 record and finished sixth in the Hoosier Hills Conference with a 2-5 mark. Seymour was among the teams the Panthers defeated in the regular season. A rematch with Seymour in the sectional would occur only if both teams advance to the championship game Saturday, because they are on opposite sides of the bracket.

“This season hasn’t been as great as we wanted it to be, but our team still has a lot to play for,” Jennings County head coach Joe Hartwell said. “We feel as if we can compete for a win on Friday and sneak into the sectional final. We will be underdogs on Friday and huge underdogs if we make it to Saturday, but making it to the final and competing for a sectional title is within the realm of possibilities. We want to seize the moment and finish the season on a positive note.”

Sectional schedule

Class 4A Seymour Sectional

Tuesday

Seymour vs. Floyd Central, 6 p.m.

Bedford North Lawrence vs. Jeffersonville, 7:30 p.m.

Friday

New Albany vs. Seymour/Floyd Central winner, 6 p.m.

Jennings County vs. Bedford North Lawrence/Jeffersonville winner, 7:30

Saturday

Championship, 7:30 p.m.