Knoxville boys and girls will host Pella Christian in a makeup game tonight in high school basketball. The game was supposed to be last Tuesday but got postponed due to the winter storm. On the girls side, Knoxville comes in five-and-oh on the season and 3-0 in the LHC after Friday’s 53-33 win over Newton. In that game Bethany Just scored 16 points and Knoxville was without the services of Sam Abens. Coach Jim Utimarkt says Pella Christian is very solid at all positions and his team will have to play well to win…Utimarkt adds that Abens will be playing tonight. He says Friday’s game showed the coaching staff the team can fight through adversity. Pella Christian’s girls are coming off a big 61-28 win at Oskaloosa Friday night and are 3-3 overall and 2-0 in the Little Hawkeye Conference. Coach Kevin Van Maanen has been very pleased with the improvements and intensity he’s seen from his team the last two games. He says they’ll need that same intensity for four quarters tonight to win at Knoxville, a place they’ve struggled the last couple years.
The second game will feature the boys teams. The Pella Christian boys continue to impress as they are 4-0 on the season, and all are all road wins at South Tama, PCM, Ballard and Oskaloosa with an average margin of victory being 19 points. Coach Larry Hessing says he’s very proud of what the guys have done in their first four games, especially since they’re down to just eight players due to injury. Despite that, the Eagles continue to get balanced scoring as all eight players scored and overcame early foul trouble on several players to get the win. Hessing says they know Knoxville is much improved this year and will give them a battle, but he says they’ll be ready. The Panthers fell to Newton on Friday 43-39 in a game that coach Brad McWilliams says his team did not play well in. McWilliams hopes to have a better effort against Pella Christian tonight who he says looks to be very strong again despite having to replace all five starters from last years team. Knoxville is embarking on four games in the next seven days and McWilliams says that limits practice time…so adjustment will have to made on the fly…Knoxville will have the services of Luke Moore once again after he was forced to sit out the Newton game after being ejected in the previous game against South Tama. The girls game tips off at 6:15pm tonight followed by the boys around 7:45pm. You can hear the play-by-play of tonight’s games on both AM 1320 KNIA and 92.1 FM KRLS with Jamie Brockman and Wynne Veenstra starting at 6pm. The broadcast will also streamed live on www.knaikrls.com