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Friday, Feb. 21, 2020, Boys’ Basketball Playoff Previews


There are four District 9 boys’ basketball playoff games on tap for Friday, all in the Class 1A quarterfinals.

(Photo: Regis Wortman and ECC begin defense of their D9 Class 1A title Friday night when the Crusaders play Austin in the quarterfinals at Bradford High School. Photo by Jared Bakaysa of JB Graphics. See more of Bakaysa’s work here)

DISTRICT 9 CLASS 1A QUARTERFINALS

D9Sports.com’s District 9/PIAA basketball playoff coverage Powered by Lezzer Lumber

(8) Austin vs. (1) Elk County Catholic

When and Where: 7 p.m. at Bradford High School
Records: Austin (12-11); ECC 23-1
Winner Plays: Winner of the A-C Valley/Johnsonburg game in the semifinals Wednesday
Austin Leading Scorers: Jackson Glover (18.1 ppg), Parker Glover (10.4 ppg), Joseph Glover Jr. (7.0 ppg), Skylar Crawford (5.7 ppg)
ECC Leading Scorers: Regis Wortman (14.4 ppg), Mark Kraus (10.8 ppg), Will Uberti (5.5 ppg), Carter Lindemuth (5.1 ppg)
Last District 9 Title: TBA; ECC 2019 in Class 1A
Notes: Austin beat Northern Potter, 56-53, when Jackson Glover hit three free throws in the final 11.5 seconds. It was the Panthers’ first postseason win since 2001 … ECC has reached the semifinals in each of the past seven seasons, and since moving from Class 2A to Class 1A in 1999, ECC has reached the semifinals in 20 of those 21 seasons with 12 District 9 titles and a PIAA championship during that stretch. The Crusaders, in fact, have been in the D9 Class 1A title game in each of the last four seasons – winning three – and in 16 of the last 21 … ECC’s lone loss this season came at DuBois Jan. 29, and it has won six in a row since that loss, including three straight with Wortman out of the lineup Feb. 8 through Feb. 13 … Kraus has averaged 12.7 ppg since Jan. 8 for ECC … Austin is the lone remaining team in the playoffs with a negative scoring differential (minus 1.5). ECC, on the other hand, has the third-best scoring differential in D9 at 19.2 ppg … The Crusaders are also the stingiest team in D9 giving up just 36.3 ppg

Austin playoff information is brought you by: Team MinardPotter County Family CampgroundClose’s Lumber Company

(7) Otto-Eldred vs. (2) Clarion-Limestone

When and Where: 7:30 p.m. at St. Marys High School
Records: Otto-Eldred 11-10; C-L 19-4
Winner Plays: Winner of the North Clarion/Cameron County game in the semifinals Wednesday
Otto-Eldred Leading Scorers: Jake Merry (14.2 ppg), Braden Maholic (10.0 ppg), Cole Sebastian (8.1 ppg), Gavin Jimerson (7.8 ppg)
Clarion-Limestone Leading Scorers: Hayden Callen (20.0 ppg), Deion Deas (19.3 ppg), Curvin Goheen (8.8 ppg), Jordan Hesdon (6.3 ppg), Mitch Knepp (5.2 ppg)
Last District 9 Title: Otto-Eldred has never won a D9 title and is 0-1 in title game; C-L 2015 in Class 1A
Notes: This is the second straight year these teams have met in the quarterfinals. Last year, C-L, which was the third seed, held off an upset attempt by sixth-seeded Otto-Eldred, winning 61-58. Players who are back this year that had an impact included Deas (15 points) and Callen (13 points) for C-L and Sebastian (12 points) for Otto-Eldred … C-L, which advanced to the second round of the PIAA playoffs last season after finishing third in District 9, enters the postseason having won 11 of 13 … Otto-Eldred, which is looking for a postseason win for the first time since finishing fourth in D9 in 2017, started the season 5-1 but enter the postseason having won just twice in its seven games. The Terrors have trouble in close games going 1-3 in games decided by three points or less … Callen, who ranks sixth in D9 scoring, and Deas, who ranks eighth in scoring, are both over 1,000 career points … C-L is the second-highest scoring team in D9 at 65.7 ppg

Otto-Eldred playoff information is brought to you by: Team MinardPotter County Family CampgroundClose’s Lumber Company

Clarion-Limestone playoff information is brought to you by: Delta Contracting & Design/Ace Concrete & ExcavatingBurford & Henry Real Estate ServicesTin Town Metal WorksState Representative Donna Oberlander (Paid for by Friends of Donna Oberlander)

(6) North Clarion vs. (3) Cameron County

When and Where: 7:30 p.m. at Kane High School
Records: North Clarion 14-8; Cameron County 18-4
Winner Plays: Winner of the Otto-Eldred/C-L game in the semifinals Wednesday
North Clarion Leading Scorers: Matson Higgins (14.4 ppg), Drew Gatesman (11.2 ppg), Devon Walters (9.6 ppg), Jacob Bauer (7.0 ppg), Collin Schmader (6.4 ppg)
Cameron County Leading Scorers: Dino Brown (17.4 ppg), Caden Beldin (16.2 ppg), Hayden Brown (9.5 ppg), Dylan Guisto (8.1 ppg)
Last District 9 Title: North Clarion 1985 in Class 1A; Cameron County 1973 in Class 1A
Notes: Cameron County enters the contest having won 13 of its last 15 games including a win over Coudersport, the No. 2 seed in the 2A playoffs … After an 8-2 start, North Clarion lost 3 of 4 before rebounding to win three in a row. But since Jan. 28, the Wolves, last season’s D9 runner up, have split wins and losses, although that trend could be good since the last time out was a loss to Keystone … Cameron County ranks sixth in D9 in scoring at 59.9 ppg

Cameron County playoff information is brought you by: Team MinardPotter County Family CampgroundClose’s Lumber Company

North Clarion playoff information is brought to you by: Delta Contracting & Design/Ace Concrete & ExcavatingBurford & Henry Real Estate ServicesTin Town Metal WorksState Representative Donna Oberlander (Paid for by Friends of Donna Oberlander)

(5) A-C Valley vs. (4) Johnsonburg

When and Where: 7:30 p.m. at DuBois High School
Records: A-C Valley 15-7; Johnsonburg 16-8
Winner Plays: Winner of Austin/ECC game in the semifinals Wednesday
A-C Valley Leading Scorers: Levi Orton (22.8 ppg), Eddie Stevanus (12.7 ppg), Eli Penny (7.0 ppg), Tanner Merwin (5.8 ppg)
Johnsonburg Leading Scorers: Austin Green (15.3 ppg), Gabe Watts (11.8 ppg), Cameron Stelene (6.5 ppg), Eric Christoff (6.0 ppg), Garrett Gregori (5.6 ppg)
Last District 9 Title: A-C Valley 1973 in Class C; Johnsonburg 2018 in Class 1A
Notes: Johnsonburg’s eight losses have come to teams that have a combined record of 97-38, including three losses to 23-1 top-seeded ECC … The Rams rank fourth in District 9 in points allowed per game at 40.7 and could be challenged by an A-C Valley offense that ranks fourth in D9 scoring 60.6 ppg … Both teams feature 1,000-point scorers with Green hitting that mark this season as a senior for Johnsonburg, and Orton, a junior, also reaching the mark joining his dad, Tim, in the 1,000-point club at A-C Valley … Orton is the second-leading scorer in District 9 … Johnsonburg is 12-4 in its last 16 games, while A-C Valley 6-2 in its last eight and comes into the game on an eight-game win streak … The Falcons last postseason win came in 2013, 77-33 over DuBois Central Catholic

A-C Valley recaps are brought to you by: Levi’s Lawncare (814-758-0878.) • The A-C Valley Booster Club • Delta Contracting & Design/Ace Concrete & ExcavatingBurford & Henry Real Estate ServicesTin Town Metal WorksState Representative Donna Oberlander (Paid for by Friends of Donna Oberlander)

Full coverage of District 9 teams in the basketball postseason can be found here.



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