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2002 Karns City Crowned Best Boys’ Team in D9Sports.com-Era

The 2002 Karns City team was crowned the best boys’ basketball team in the D9Sports.com-Era (2001-present) with a 56 percent to 44 percent win over 2013 Johnsonburg in the championship game.

(Photo courtesy of Patrick Craig) 

See the D9Sports.com Tournament of Champions Boys’ Bracket

The Gremlins garnered 860 votes to the Rams 682 votes to win the crown.

Jeff Loughry-coached Karns City went 27-2 in 2002 and beat Moniteau, 69-48, to win the District 9 Class 2A title.

The Gremlins won their first 21 games (in a 24-game regular season) and didn’t lose until Feb. 11 when it dropped a regular-season decision at Wilkinsburg, 50-47.

In the PIAA playoffs, Karns City beat Maplewood (69-48) at Clarion University and North Star (47-46 in overtime) at Franklin Regional to reach the PIAA quarterfinals before losing to eventual PIAA runner-up Sto-Rox (72-56) in the quarterfinals at Butler High School.

In the win over North Star, future Redbank Valley head coach and Clarion University player Patrick Craig hit a shot with eight seconds to play in overtime to win the game. Craig had also tied the game with three free throws with 18.8 seconds left in regulation after being fouled taking a 3-pointer. The Gremlins were led by Craig (21.3 ppg, 11.5 rpg), a 1,000-point career scorer, and Brian Hilderbrand (10.2 ppg, 8.7 apg), who were both named first-team All-District players.

Joining Craig and Hilderbrand, both seniors, on the varsity roster that season were junior Erik Fuhrer, senior DJ Black, senior Brian Trimbur, senior Ian Ferguson, juniors Travis Trimbur, Nathan McCollough, Jeff Wagner, and Tyler Henry, and seniors Beau Rattigan and Joe Callihan.

Don Loughry, Jeff’s dad, was the assistant coach.

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2002 KARNS CITY SCHEDULE

Day of Week

 Date

 Opponent

 Time/Result

Friday  Nov. 30 MARION CENTER (Karns City Tournament) W 86-51
Saturday  Dec. 1 MONITEAU (Karns City Tournament) W 80-36
Wednesday  Dec. 5  KNOCH W 68-51
Wednesday  Dec. 12  *CLARION-LIMESTONE W 81-54
Friday  Dec. 14  *at Redbank Valley W 78-35
Friday  Dec. 21  *A-C VALLEY W 65-26
Friday  Dec. 28  vs. Burrell at Butler Tournament W 65-29
Saturday  Dec. 29  vs. Vincentian at Butler Tournament W 87-45
Thursday  Jan. 3  *at Keystone W 53-38
Saturday  Jan. 5  *MONITEAU W 71-64
Wednesday  Jan. 9  *at North Clarion W 86-45
Friday  Jan. 11  *CLARION W 59-46
Tuesday  Jan. 15  *at Union W 90-36
Friday  Jan. 18  *at Clarion-Limestone W 69-68
Wednesday  Jan. 23  *REDBANK VALLEY W 62-29
Saturday  Jan. 26  SETON-LASALLE W 62-51
Tuesday  Jan. 29  *at A-C Valley W 87-53
Friday  Feb. 1  *KEYSTONE W 50-46
Monday  Feb. 4  at Blairsville W 62-45
Wednesday  Feb. 6  *at Moniteau W 74-42
Friday  Feb. 8  *NORTH CLARION W 79-39
Monday  Feb. 11  at Wilkinsburg L 47-50
Tuesday  Feb. 12  *at Clarion W 84-62
Friday  Feb. 15  *UNION W 83-47
Tuesday Feb. 19  &vs. Ridgway at Clarion Univ. (Semifinals) W 86-38
Thursday Feb. 28  &vs. Moniteau at Clarion Univ (Championship game) W 69-48
Saturday Mar. 9  $vs. Maplewood at Clarion Univ. W 51-36
Wednesday Mar. 13  $vs. North Star at Franklin Regional HS W 47-46, OT
Saturday Mar. 16  $vs. Sto-Rox at Butler HS (Quarterfinals) L 56-72
HOME GAMES IN CAPS
*Indicates Keystone Shortway Athletic Conference Game
&District 9 Class AA Playoffs (No Junior Varsity)
$PIAA Class AA Playoffs (No Junior Varsity)



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