Strong Push in Third Quarter Helps Bison to Senior Night Victory

Bison seniors (L-R): Chris O’Shea, Will Myers, Tommy Hazel, Ethan McGinnis, David McKenzie, Jarrit Wagner, Evan Brown (Photo by Jay Siegel)

HYDE — It has been a very emotional week for the Clearfield Bison basketball team.  Two night ago, senior Will Myers officially took hold of being the all-time leading scorer for the program in front of a capacity crowd inside the Bison Gymnasium.  A mere 48 hours later, it was another emotional night because for the final time in the regular season, seven seniors took to the court in front of their fellow students, faculty and families.

Senior David McKenzie preps for a rebound (Photo by Jay Siegel)

Having already secured the Mountain League championship less than one week ago, the task at hand on the final night of the 22-game season was to close out with a victory.

In order to do so, the Bison had to take down the visiting Philipsburg-Osceola Mounties, who were coming off a strong victory over DuBois Central Catholic.

In the first half, the Mounties kept the Bison defense on their toes, while offensively were creating opportunities to get key baskets.  At the same time, the Bison were penetrating and spreading the ball around to find strong looks.  It wasn’t until the third quarter when the game really began favoring the home squad.

In the first half, second opportunities kept the Bison in the lead.  But it was forcing turnovers in the third quarter, and limiting the Mounties on offensive possessions, that ultimately locked down the 78-47 victory.

Head coach Nate Glunt was quick to point out that in the first half, despite having the lead for most of it, his team wasn’t the best one on the court.

“If it wasn’t for offensive rebounds, we probably would have been losing at halftime.  That was the difference in the first half because they executed really well.  We didn’t, but we got more opportunities than they did.

“They out-played us, but because of those second-chance opportunities we got the lead.”

The Mounties finished the first quarter only down 10 points, but the two squads were swapping the lead on multiple occasions in the opening stanza.  In the second quarter, Clearfield began pulling away to a 43-25 halftime lead.  Glunt was quick to point out the opportunities his team got were on offensive rebounds, as P-O was limited to only one offensive board, while Clearfield pulled in nearly 20.

Clearfield’s trio of top scorers, Myers, Evan Brown and Tommy Hazel, all were limited in the first half, but when they did get a chance to put up points, they took it.  Myers was limited to eight points in the first quarter, but finished with a game-high 21 points.  Hazel had his bulk of the scoring come in the second quarter, scoring 14 of his 19 points in the frame.  Brown finished with 13 points, 11 of which came in the first half.

When the third quarter began, it was clear that Clearfield had made adjustments in the locker room.

The Bison started with the ball to start the stanza, and from there it was defense taking control.  The Mounties committed nine turnovers in the quarter, and only shot a mere 2-for-7 in the quarter.  Clearfield led the scoring, 23-4, and at that moment the rout was on.

“We played a lot better in the third quarter.  We started executing defensively, which opened up our offense,” Glunt said.

P-O had a pair of players in double figures, as Josiah Davis finished with 15 points, and Marcus Wisor added in another 10.

The Bison seniors come off the floor for the last time, congratulated by Head Coach Nate Glunt and assistant Don Shimmel (Photo by Jay Siegel)

The fourth quarter ultimately was the best sendoff for the senior class, as with Myers nailing a deep shot at the post with 6:53 remaining in the game, it made the score 73-33, locking in a running clock for the remainder of the game.  The seniors took a final bow on the night, letting the underclassmen take to the court to get some playing experience.

Glunt afterwards was appreciative of his seniors and all they accomplished in his three short seasons as head coach.

“We’re so lucky to be a part of this group for the last three years.  I actually coached these guys in the K-1 and K-2 program,” he said.  “We’re really fortunate, they have great families, they take care of their grades.  They all do things right, and it makes it a lot easier to coach these guys.”

The junior varsity squad started the night with a victory of their own, 48-35, finishing the season with a record of 17-4.

The varsity squad concluded the regular season with a 21-1 record, with the senior class finishing with a remarkable current record of 63-8, two consecutive Mountain League championships, and two consecutive District IX championships.  Glunt knows the opportunity is awaiting for his team to do a three-peat.  Before then, Glunt and his coaching staff are keeping the team fresh with upcoming activities.  The regular season is over for his team, but he has a plan for the upcoming weeks.

“Now we got to go back to work again, get back to basics.  We have some scrimmages set up to play a little bit, and then get ready for playoffs and another district championship,” he said.

The bracket for the District IX playoffs will be released at a later date.

SCORE BY QUARTER

Philipsburg-Osceola   15   10   4   18  –  47
Clearfield   25   18   23   12  –  78

Philipsburg-Osceola – 47

Jones 1 2-4 4, Davis 5 2-5 15, Richardson 0 0-0 0, Slogosky 0 0-0 0, Durlin 2 0-0 4, Guelich 2 2-2 7, Soltys 0 0-0 0, Doyle 0 0-0 0, Jeffries 1 0-1 3, Wisor 4 2-2 10, Harkin 2 0-0 4.  TOTALS 17 8-14 47

Clearfield – 78

McGinnis 0 0-0 0, Walker 0 0-0 0, Gates 1 1-2 4, Brown 6 1-3 13, Wilson 4 0-0 8, Lazauskas 0 0-0 0, Hess 0 0-0 0, Porter 0 0-0 0, McKenzie 1 1-2 3, Hazel 8 2-2 19, Wagner 0 0-0 0, Myers 8 2-4 21, Chew 4 0-0 10.  TOTALS 32 7-13 78.

GAME STATISTICS
P-O/Clearfield

Shooting:  17-47/32-68

Rebounds:  21/38

Fouls:  10/14

Turnovers:  19/15

Three-Point Baskets:  Davis (3), Guelich, Jeffries/Gates, Hazel, Myers (3), Chew (2)

Bison Scoreboard:

Date Opponent Score Record
12/09 @ Curwensville 81 – 38 1 – 0
12/13 CENTRAL 53 – 41 2 – 0
12/16 @ Huntingdon 68 – 51 3 – 0
12/19 @ Bellefonte 56 – 33 4 – 0
12/22 TYRONE 65 – 40 5 – 0
12/29&30 Purchase Line Christmas Tourney    
12/29 vs. Northern Cambria 82 – 23 6 – 0
12/30 vs. Purchase Line 65 – 45 7 – 0
01/03 @ Brookville 83 – 59 8 – 0
01/06 @ Bald Eagle Area 73 – 30 9 – 0
01/09 @ Central 46 – 57 9 – 1
01/11 PENNS VALLEY ppd. 9 – 1
01/12 PENNS VALLEY 51 – 34 10 – 1
01/13 @ Philipsburg-Osceola 75 – 28 11 – 1
01/19 CLARION-LIMESTONE 82 – 48 12 – 1
01/20 HUNTINGDON 67 – 54 13 – 1
01/23 @ DuBois 62 – 47 14 – 1
01/25 BELLEFONTE 73 – 40 15 – 1
01/27 @ Tyrone 79 – 45 16 – 1
01/30 PUNXSUTAWNEY 65 – 41 17 – 1
01/31 BALD EAGLE AREA ppd. 17 – 1
02/01 BALD EAGLE AREA 68 – 36 18 – 1
02/03 @ Penns Valley 66 – 55 19 – 1
02/06 CURWENSVILLE 85 – 37 20 – 1
02/08 PHILIPSBURG-OSCEOLA 78 – 47 21 – 1
Lady Tide Thump Sheffield 65-40
Weber's 30-20 Effort Key as Lady Tide Come From Behind To Defeat Rival Lady Bison 57-54 in Overtime Thriller

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