Bisons win over Bald Eagle

HYDE – An advantage in experience and size paid dividends for the Clearfield Area High School boy’s basketball team Wednesday night as the Bisons launched their home schedule with a 59-39 win over Bald Eagle Area on the Arthur J. Weiss Gymnasium hardwood.

The non-league game didn’t start out the way the Bison coaching staff had planned, though, as the hosts were scoreless until James Zimmerman drove the baseline with 3:10 gone. Fortunately, the Eagles had mustered only a three-pointer by Trevor Schall.

Clearfield went in front for the first time at 7-5 on Mike Johnson’s putback and free throw with 3:49 left in the first quarter and grabbed the lead for keeps on Todd Hryn’s three-pointer from the left corner that snapped a 7-7 tie with 2:34 remaining. A tip-in by Hryn at the 2:09 mark ended the scoring for the period.

Shooting woes continued for both teams until Hryn, a 6-3 junior reserve, converted a nice feed by Zimmerman for the first points in more than four minutes and Johnson added a steal and lay-up six seconds later to put Clearfield ahead 16-7 with 5:47 left in the half.

Coach Forrest Campman’s Bisons, who contested the in-bounds passes and pressured the Eagles all over the court, capitalized on their defensive effort to pull away to a 28-14 lead. BEA, which lost all five starters and four reserves from last season’s 24-6 District 6 Class AA championship squad, scored the last five points of the second period, three when Marcus Maggs banked in a runner that just beat the buzzer.

Campman wasn’t satisfied with his team’s play in the first half.

“They looked like they were afraid to do things,” he said. “We just told them to go out and play basketball.”

The Bisons responded as Zimmermans’s four field goals paced a 19-8 third quarter that made it 47-27, and the 5-11 senior used his quickness on the baseline for three more baskets in the final period before departing after the lead reached 26 points at 57-31 with 3:14 to go.

“I thought we executed a little bit better in the second half”’ Campman said. “We were a bit more aggressive. I thought everybody contributed.”

He cited the rebounding of Kyle Kline, the playmaking of Lhota, the offensive boost of Hryn in the first quarter and the overall play of Zimmerman and Johnson.

Clearfield’s trio of returning starters combined for 39 points. Zimmerman finished with 19, the 6-2 Johnson scored 11 and point guard Lhota had nine. Hryn chipped in with 10 as the Bisons improved to 2-1 for Friday’s District 9 League opener at Punxsutawney.

The Bisons forced the majority of BEA’s 20 turnovers with their zone press and had the edge in rebounding, led by Kline’s six.

Drew Wetzel tops the Eagles (0-4) with 10 points.

Clearfield won the junior varsity game 53-23 with balanced scoring led by Matt Shiner’s 10 points. Nathan Greenland and Aaron Sayers had none a piece, Parker Herrington had eight and Cruise Kerr had seven.

BALD EAGLE AREA – 39
Kader 1 0-0 2, Schall 2 0-0 6, Wetzel 4 2-3 10, Moyer 1 2-2 5, Pillot 2 0-3 4, Foust 3 0-0 6, Fayman 1 0-0 3, Fisher 0 0-0 0, Maggs 1 0-0 3, Bravis 0 0-0 0, Resto 0 0-0 0, Moore 0 0-2 0. Totals” 15 4-10 39.

CLEARFIELD – 59
Lhota 4 0-0 9, Janocko 1 0-0 3, Johnson 5 1-1 11, Kline 1 0-0 2, Zimmerman 9 0-0 19, Hryn 4 1-2 10, Campman 1 0-0 3, Hipps 0 0-0 0, Greenland 0 0-0 0, Ryan 0 0-0 0, Fox 0 0-0 0, Herrington 0 0-0 0, Shiner 1 0-0 2. Totals: 26 2-3 59.

Three-Point Field Goals – Bald Eagle Area 5 (Shall 2, Moyer 1, Fayman 1, Maggs 1) Clearfield 5 (Lhota 1, Janocko 1, Zimmerman 1 Hryn 1, Campman 1).

Score by Quarters:
Bald Eagle Area 7 12 8 12 – 39
Clearfield 12 26 19 12 – 59

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