Lady Dutch Defeat Lady Bison 51-30 in 9-AAAA Semi

ST. MARYS — The Clearfield Area High School girls basketball team did not bring its A game to the St. Marys Area High School Dutch Oven Friday night, and the Lady Dutch capitalized, especially in the second half, to end the Lady Bison season, 51-30, in their District 9 Class AAAA semifinal.

“We played hard, but we didn’t play well,” disappointed Clearfield coach Joey Castagnolo said. “It never seemed like we got into the flow of the game, even though we were leading after the first quarter.”

Less than 30-percent shooting and a lack of rebounds spelled defeat for the third-seeded Lady Bison.

The aggressive, hounding Lady Dutch man-for-man defense had a lot to do with the Lady Bison making only 13 field goals, with just three in the second half.

They were collapsing in the paint every time playmaker Alayna Ryan attempted to drive, making sure she never had a clear lane to the hoop.

The senior standout wound up with 11 points to close her brilliant career with a 1,165 total that ranks fourth in the history of the Clearfield program.

Freshman Emma Hipps netted her first two shots for a 4-2 lead, which changed hands four times in the first period that ended 9-8 after McLain Alt drained a three-pointer from the right side with 1:22 left.

Ryan’s fallaway jumper put Clearfield ahead for the last time at 11-10 as St. Marys answered with a 9-2 run keyed by Kyla Johnson’s five points.

The Lady Bison got to within two twice more, 21-19 when Ryan followed up a dandy dish to Tesa Miller with a runout after scrapping for a loose ball, and 23-21 on Hipps’ fourth basket of the half.

A three-pointer from the left corner by Johnson with just three ticks on the clock sent the No. 2-seeded Lady Dutch to the locker room on top 26-21.

Second-chance and third-chance points were critical for St. Marys in the quarter, for Kaylee Muccio constantly gained position under the glass for offensive rebounds.

The junior forward backed Johnson’s game-high 18 points with a double-double, 12 points and 12 rebounds that topped the Lady Dutch’s 37-27 advantage.

“She killed us,” Castagnolo said. “When a team can work the ball like they do and get second shots, you’re doomed. They’re so fundamentally sound on boxing out. We are the bigger team, but they got far more rebounds.

“I was happy at the end of the second quarter even after that girl hit that big three. It changed the momentum, but it didn’t demoralize us.”

However, the Lady Bison never got going after intermission.

They self-destructed in the third quarter, shooting 1-for-8 and committing eight turnovers.

On their first 11 possessions, the Lady Bison misfired on six field goal tries and two free throws and had four turnovers.

“We just can’t do that against good teams,” Castagnolo said.

Only Ryan’s difficult drive down the lane with 2:57 remaining averted a shutout.

Meanwhile, the Lady Dutch were getting six points from Johnson and five from Muccio in building a 39-23 bulge that they continued to widen in the final period.

“They played better than us,” Castagnolo said. “They got good looks, and that’s why their shooting percentage was so high.”

St. Marys, which connected on 20 field goals for 44.4 percent, will take a 17-6 record into the district championship game against No. 1 seed Punxsutawney (21-1) next week.

Clearfield finished 9-14 and will be losing only Ryan to graduation.

Her all-around talent can’t be replaced, though, including the energy she’s called on to expend every game as the chaser on the Lady Bison match-up zone defense.

All in all, Ryan ranks as one of the Lady Bison greats.

“It’s just hard to accept that she won’t be my point guard after three years,” Castagnolo said. “What a wonderful career. Just very proud of her.”

“I just wish we would have had better results tonight.”

Ryan logged six assists, two steals, one blocked shot and two rebounds to go with her fifth lowest point output of a remarkable season that was highlighted by 472 points, a 20.5 average.

CLEARFIELD — 30

Megan Durandetta 0 0-0-0, Emma Hipps 4 0-0 8, Olivia Bender 0 0-0 0, Tesa Miller 3 0-0 6, Alayna Ryan 5 1-4 11, McLain Alt 1 0-0 3, Paige Rhine 0 0-0 0, McLain Alt 1 0-0 3, Adrian Rowles 0 2-4 2, Kylie Van Tassel 0 0-0 0.  TOTALS:  13  3-8  30.

ST. MARYS — 51

Kaylee Muccio 4 2-2 12, Kyla Johnson 8 0-0 8, Britney Shaw 0 1-2 1, Megan Quesenberry 0 0-0 0, Samantha Hayes 2 3-4 7, Lauren Eckert 3 0-0 7, Allison Schlimm 2 0-1 4, Maria Chiappelli 1 0-1 2, Abby Adamski 0 0-0 0.  TOTALS:  20  6-10  51.

Three-Point Field Goals – Clearfield 1 (Alt); St. Marys 5 (Muccio 2, Eckert 1, Johnson 2).

Score by Quarters

Clearfield   9  12    2    7  –  30

St. Marys   8  18  13  12  –  51

Officials – Chip Mason, Ron Bacha and John Fricker.

Final Lady Bison Scoreboard:

Date Opponent Score Record
12/07 & 08 @ Brookville Tip-off Tourney
12/07 vs. Brookville 30 – 54 0 – 1
12/08 vs. Clarion-Limestone 58 – 30 1 – 1
12/11 @ Bald Eagle Area 27 – 31 1 – 2
12/14 @ Huntingdon 42 – 72 1 – 3
12/17 BROOKVILLE 57 – 53 2 – 3
12/19 PHILIPSBURG-OSCEOLA 59 – 50 3 – 3
12/21 @ Tyrone 17 – 73 3 – 4
12/27 CURWENSVILLE 60 – 36 4 – 4
01/04 @ Punxsutawney 27 – 50 4 – 5
01/08 PENNS VALLEY 32 – 71 4 – 6
01/11 @ Central 54 – 37 5 – 6
01/14 DUBOIS 42 – 40 ot 6 – 6
01/16 BELLEFONTE 54 – 48 6 – 7
01/18 BALD EAGLE AREA 43 – 38 7 – 7
01/22 HUNTINGDON 52 – 54 7 – 8
01/23 ST. MARYS 31 – 43 7 – 9
01/25 @ Philipsburg-Osceola 45 – 56 7 – 10
01/30 TYRONE ppd. 7 – 10
02/01 @ Penns Valley 24 – 55 7 – 11
02/05 CENTRAL 32 – 43 7 – 12
02/06 TYRONE 59 – 51 8 – 12
02/08 @ Bellefonte 44 – 46 8 – 13
02/12 @ Curwensville ppd. 8 – 13
02/15 @ Curwensville 59 – 38 9 – 13
02/20 District 9 AAAA Semifinals
02/20 @ St. Marys 30 – 51 9 – 14

Three Golden Tide Wrestlers Advance to 9-AA Semifinals
Nine Golden Tide Wrestlers Eye District 9 Class AA Tourney

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