BROOMFIELD — Trust is a pretty big term for Fairview's Ashley Panem.
Just a sophomore for the Knights and playing the floor general, Panem wants only for her teammates to be able to trust her decision-making ability. If the past few games are any indication, she's at least earned the right to be called Fairview's go-to girl.
Thursday night against Legacy, Panem scored 21 points and did a little bit of everything else — including blocking two shots in the third quarter — as Fairview overcame a sluggish start to beat the Lightning 49-42 at the LHS gym.
Denali Pinto's 10 points and Grace O'Neill's six points, four blocked shots and 10 rebounds also played a big role in a rally, but Panem's 12 straight points for FHS between the second and third quarters showed a little of what teams can expect for the next couple of years.
Her numbers across the board have improved even though she started as a freshman, and she has at least 13 points in each of the past six contests.
"We want the ball in her hands when it's crunch time, and I think she's proven to be a playmaker both in scoring and (passing)," said FHS coach Rod Beauchamp, whose team moved to 13-8 overall and 7-3 in league.
"These past few games, I've definitely felt more confident in what I can do, so I guess that's what it is," Panem said with a laugh. "We have this phrase — WITATS — which means 'whatever it takes and then some'. We just needed to do that."
Panem's point parade brought FHS back from a 19-11 deficit with 3 minutes, 17 seconds to go in the second quarter to a 26-23 LHS advantage with 5:56 left in the third frame, and her assist on Lailah Safi's 3-pointer tied the game for the first time at 26-26.
After one of Grace O'Neill's blocks, Panem hit the third of her four 3-pointers at the 1:32 mark of the third, giving Fairview the last lead it would need in the road win.
Legacy (3-18, 2-8) controlled the rebounding game early to help stake a 19-5 lead at one point, but a small 6-0 run from Fairview helped get the Knights some momentum before Panem got the hot hand.
"We didn't have a lot of focus to come out," Panem said. "We knew they were going to be different this time around. The second half, we moved the ball around a lot better and made some good cuts to the basket."
Vanessa Romo led Legacy with 17 points, and Alyssa Kenson came off the bench to score nine quick points, helping Legacy grow its lead. But 19 turnovers and a drop in rebounding after the first frame didn't help the hosts.
"I think we're starting to play a lot better defensively, and a couple of our girls are figuring out how to score, and that's been our biggest problem," Legacy coach Craig Van Patten said. "Tonight we were aggressive offensively. We need second and third options for Vanessa, and Alyssa was that girl for us (Thursday)."
Fairview 49, Legacy 42
At Legacy HS
FAIRVIEW (13-8, 7-3)
Annie Kuosman 0 0-0 0, Tati Sobolik 0 2-2 2, Lailah Safi 1 0-2 3, Denali Pinto 5 0-0 10, Kate O'Neill 1 0-1 2, Sarah Gordon 1 1-2 3, Meadbh Koenigsberg 1 0-0 2, Sruthi Raguveer 0 0-0 0, Ashley Panem 6 5-8 21, Grace O'Neill 2 2-6 6. Totals 17 10-21 49.
LEGACY (3-18, 2-8)
Morgan Morrow 0 0-1 0, Alyssa Kenson 2 4-4 9, Katelyn Pedersen 1 3-4 5, Kaylea Beck 1 0-0 2, Olivia Zamora 2 1-3 5, Anya Carlson 1 0-0 2, Vanessa Romo 7 2-2 17, Lexi Bozovich 1 0-0 2, Rachel Trujillo 0 0-0 0. Totals 15 10-14 42.
Score by quarters:Fairview 5 13 17 14 — 49
Legacy 12 13 3 14 — 42
3-point field goals — Fairview (5): Panem 4, Safi; Legacy (2): Kenson, Romo.