Golden Tide Rolls Past Black Knights 65-54

CURWENSVILLE — The Curwensville Area High School boys basketball team turned a not-so-funny start into a laugher with a 30-point second quarter and went on to defeat Moshannon Valley 65-54 in Patton Hall Wednesday night.

The final score is quite deceiving, because the winless Black Knights heated up from long range with the Golden Tide reserves on the floor the entire fourth quarter, making it respectable by burning the nets for seven three-pointers in a 27-2 run over the last 5:16.

Curwensville’s starters actually exited for good with 3:38 left in the third period after turning a 41-20 halftime lead into a 57-22 bulge.

They sat out the final 4:12 of the first quarter of the Moshannon Valley League game, too, but that was because their 1-for-7 shooting and two turnovers gave coach Shane Pentz the impression they didn’t come out of the locker room ready to play.

Mo Valley (0-18, 0-7 MVL) was in front 7-3 at that point.

“Our second unit came in and gave us good energy,” Pentz said. “Marcus Stephenson, Nate Kurtz, Trey Rauckhorst, Harrison Bloom and Jonathan Miller really gave us a spark. And they kept the game close.”

Kurtz and Bloom immediately got the home crowd involved with back-to-back three-pointers.

The Black Knights answered with eight consecutive points and led 15-11 at the first run.

However, the Golden Tide’s all-junior first five had gotten the message, especially when Pentz issued an ultimatum.

“I told them they’ve got one minute to prove they’re here to play tonight,” he said. “And they sure did. They really came out aggressive. They flipped a switch and decided to play hard. They completely turned it around from the opening second of the second quarter.”

They quickly changed Pentz’s mood.

Alex Olson’s putback after one of the Golden Tide’s nine offensive rebounds in the quarter and Austin Jacobson’s bunny off a Tanner Elensky feed in that first minute tied the score.

And Curwensville (4-14, 3-4) shell-shocked Mo Valley over the next five minutes as their surge to a 39-17 cushion was interrupted only by David Bubb’s putback.

“Our press started to get some fast-break opportunities for us off live-ball turnovers,” Pentz noted. “We were able to convert those into points. Then, we made a couple open jump shots. We relaxed, and offense came a little easier for us.”

Brett Gardner topped the Golden Tide’s biggest quarter of the season with eight points, while Jacobson and Kyle Johns tallied six apiece, Olson and Rauckhorst added four each and Elensky had two to go with three dandy assists.

“Tanner’s our point guard, our team leader,” Pentz said. “The kids feed off of him. When he was getting steals, he was feeding guys for easy baskets.

“When we’re in the open court and Tanner has the ball in his hands, we’re at our best.”

Pentz pointed out that Elensky also has the ability to create his own offense, and that’s what he did in the first four minutes of the second half.

He cashed five consecutive shots, including a pair of threes from the top of the circle, and added another helper to Jacobson in a 16-2 run.

Elensky wound up with a team-high 14 points, Gardner chimed in with 11 and Jacobson added 10.

Seven other Golden Tide players made contributions on offense.

“It’s been a long time since we’ve had 10 players score in a game,” Pentz said.

Two bunnies by Kurtz on passes from Stephenson and Rauckhorst gave Curwensville a 63-27 lead before Mo Valley initiated its strong finish highlighted by Sam Demko’s three consecutive three-pointers and freshman Eric Sherkel’s pair of treys and a third field goal that gave him a game-high 16 points.

“Mo Valley kept playing the whole game,” Pentz said. “We knew they were going to shoot a lot of three-pointers in the fourth quarter. I’m not sure some of the guys we had in didn’t understand where they needed to be on defense. We gave them wide-open threes, and to Mo Valley’s credit, they made them.”

Pentz had no problem leaving the reserves on the floor, though, especially with four games in a season-ending six-day stretch starting with Friday’s long trip to Kane for an Allegheny Mountain League cross-over match-up to be followed by a Saturday afternoon visit by Brockway for an AML-South Division makeup, with tip-off at approximately 3:30.

“It was nice to have a game when we could rest some guys and give other guys some experience out on the varsity floor,” Pentz said.

Curwensville made 28 of 75 shots for 37.3 percent and outrebounded Mo Valley 42-26. Rauckhorst snared eight missed shots.

In the prelim, the Golden Tide junior varsity rolled to a 55-26 win. Bloom was high with 13 points, while Kurtz and Rauckhorst added 10 apiece.

Moshannon Valley League Standings - West Branch 6-0, Glendale 5-2, Curwensville 3-4, Harmony 3-4, Moshannon Valley0-7.

MOSHANNON VALLEY — 54

Eric Sherkel 5  4-4  16, Jim McHugh 1  0-0  2, David Bubb 3  2-6  8, Nathan Bailey 2  0-0  5, Luther Harlow 1  1-4  3, Sam Demko 3  0-0  9, Levi Frailey 2  0-0  5, Michael Krupa 2  1-4  6.  TOTALS:  19  8-18  54. 

CURWENSVILLE — 65

Brett Gardner 4  2-5  11, Kyle Johns 2  2-4  6, Tanner Elensky 6  0-0  14, Alex Olson 2  0-2  4, Austin Jacobson 5  0-0  10, Trey Rauckhorst 2  0-1  4, Harrison Bloom 2  1-2  6, Nate Kurtz 3  0-0  7, Marcus Stephenson 1  0-0  2, Jonathan Miller 0  1-4  1, Jason Thorp 0  0-0  0, Alex Hill 0  0-0  0, Foster Cannon 0  0-0  0, Dillon Davis 0  0-0  0 .  TOTALS: 27  6-18  65.

Three-Point Field Goals – Moshannon Valley 8 (Sherkel 2, Bailey, Demko 3, Frailey, Krupa); Curwensville 5 (Gardner, Elensky 2, Bloom, Kurtz).

Score by Quarters

Moshannon Valley     15   5   7  27  –  54

Curwensville                 11  30  18   6  –  65

Officials – Rich Gormont and Bill Zupich.

Golden Tide Scoreboard:

Date Opponent Score Record
12/07 @ Clearfield ppd. 0 – 0
12/10 @ Clearfield 37 – 42 0 – 1
12/11 @ Brockway 32 – 45 0 – 2
12/14 RIDGWAY 37 – 59 0 – 3
12/17 @ West Branch 56 – 68 0 – 4
12/18 HARMONY 60 – 62 0 – 5
12/21 KANE ppd. 0 – 5
01/02 GLENDALE 53 – 57 0 – 6
01/04 @ DuBois Central 29 – 35 0 – 7
01/08 JOHNSONBURG 32 – 77 0 – 8
01/09 @ Glendale 40 – 52 0 – 9
01/15 ELK COUNTY  40 – 57 0 – 10
01/16 @ Mo Valley 74 – 49 1 – 10
01/22 @ Ridgway 31 – 70 1 – 11
01/23 KANE 45 – 63 1 – 12
01/25 BROCKWAY ppd. 1 – 12
01/28 DUBOIS CENTRAL ppd. 1 – 12
01/30 @ Harmony 55 – 37 2 – 12
02/01 @ Brookville 46 – 50 2 – 13
02/02 DUBOIS CENTRAL 37 – 33 3 – 13
02/05 SHEFFIELD 55 – 60 3 – 14
02/06 MO VALLEY 65 – 54 4 – 14
02/08 @ Kane    
02/09 BROCKWAY    
02/11 CLEARFIELD    
02/13 WEST BRANCH    
Lady Golden Eagles Dump Clearfield 59-39
Cold Shooting Bison Fall To Tyrone, 61-38

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