INDIANA, Pa. – Playing what they deemed their most complete game of the postseason, North Clarion moved into the PIAA Class 1A girls’ quarterfinals with a convincing 62-43 win over defending champion Berlin Brothersvalley at Indiana High School.
(Photo of Gabby Schmader (left) and Abby Gatesman of North Clarion who were named the co-Hager Paving Players of the Game Wednesday night)
“We knew coming in we were going to have to play four quarters if we wanted to win this game,” North Clarion senior Abby Gatesman, who tied for game-high honors with 16 points, said. “From here on out, we have to play four quarters.”
Relisten to the game:
The She-Wolves (26-1), the District 9 runner-up put together four strong quarters on defense limiting Berlin Brothersvalley (16-10), the third-place team out of District 5, to 13 of 61 (21.3 percent) while forcing 15 turnovers.
“I think our depth, for one, helped us out,” North Clarion head coach Terry Dreihaup said. “I also think our pressure wore them out as well.”
Full coverage of District 9 teams in the basketball postseason can be found here.
Gabby Schmader got the task of shadowing Mountaineer star Alexis Yanosky for most of the night, and while Yanosky ended up with 16 points she only hit three shots on the evening – all 3-pointers – and was visibly frustrated forcing shots from the second quarter on.
“Gabby’s job was to face up on her all over the court,” Dreihaup said. “Gabby did a super job. I think she wore her out about the third quarter. You could tell she was really tired.”
Schmader also had one of her better offensive games of late knocking down three 3-pointers and tying Mackenzie Bauer for second on the team with 13 points.
“It (felt good),” Schmader said. “It really did. I knew I was in a slump. I have been working in practice, so it felt really great to get one off tonight.”
Schmader started the game off with a 3-pointer, but the She-Wolves struggled on offense for much of the first quarter until Amaya Green scored five points in the final 1:41 of the first quarter to help North Clarion go on a quarter-ending 8-0 run to take a 13-7 lead.
“It (the first-quarter run) gave us a lot of momentum going into the second,” Gatesman said. “I think it just kept building from there. It was huge.”
North Clarion then used a 9-0 run in the second quarter to build the lead to 10, 24-14, on a Trinity Thompson bucket with 4:17 to play in the quarter.
The basket, a routine layup off the glass, was big for Thompson as Dreihaup had been working with the junior to use the glass when she shot. She scored all four of her points off the glass while adding a team-best 11 rebounds and blocking four shots.
“Trinity played a great game both offensively and defensively,” Dreihaup said. “She is just getting better and better every game. Her height is just a blessing for us. I am glad she is on my team.”
After the Thompson basket, Gatesman took over scoring nine straight points for the She-Wolves on her way to 12 in the quarter. That helped North Clarion take a 33-20 lead with just over a minute to go in the half.
“I just started driving to the hoop,” Gatesman said. “We started running a little bit of different kinds of plays to open things up. I just started driving, and I knew if I didn’t have the drive I would have the dish.”
A 3-pointer by Yanosky and a basket by Jennifer Countryman off a Yanosky feed helped Berlin Brothersvalley steal some of the momentum going into halftime down eight, 33-25.
But Schmader hit a two 3-pointers and Haley Sherman scored twice to help North Clarion start the second half on a 10-0 run to push the She-Wolves lead to 18 points, 43-25, on a Schmader triple with 4:37 to play in the third quarter.
“They just played great together tonight,” Dreihaup said. “And they played great defense as a team.”
The Mountaineers tried to hang around cutting the deficit to 13 points on a couple of occasions in the third quarter before baskets by Gatesman and Thompson gave North Clarion a 49-32 lead heading to the final eight minutes.
That’s when Bauer took over scoring nine of her 13 points to put the game away with her 3-pointer at the 2:31 mark being the final dagger that put the She-Wolves up 21, 60-39.
“She hit a couple of floaters down the middle, and then that 3-pointer she hit was huge,” Dreihaup said. “Mackenzie played a super game tonight.”
Despite the slow start that saw them go 3 of 10 from the field in the first quarter, North Clarion shot 51.1 percent (24 of 47) for the night, including 21 of 37 (56.8 percent) over the final three frames with the fourth quarter being its best shooting-quarter at 6-for-8.
“It feels amazing,” Schmader said. “Just to know that we can prove how good we are as a team and come together and play together and just keep going.”
North Clarion also heeded Dreihaup’s wishes to rebound the ball better outrebounding Berlin Brothersvalley 41-36 with Gatesman adding nine boards to Thompson’s 10 and Schmader five.
“I think Haley and Trinity did a really good job of boxing out tonight,” Gatesman said.”I think the whole team did. But I still think we can get a little bit better on that.”
Watch Gatesman and Schmader’s full post-game interview.
North Clarion will face WPIAL champion Rochester, a 70-50 winner over Tussey Mountain, in the quarterfinals Saturday at a site and time to be announced. It is North Clarion’s second trip to the quarterfinals in four years, and the She-Wolves are seeking their first-ever PIAA semifinal berth.
“It’s great for the kids,” Dreihaup said. “The girls really played hard tonight. They worked hard all week, all season. We’re not done. We want to keep moving on.”
North Clarion postseason information is brought to you by: Delta Contracting & Design/Ace Concrete & Excavating • Burford & Henry Real Estate Services • Tin Town Metal Works • State Representative Donna Oberlander (Paid for by Friends of Donna Oberlander) • Tuck’D Inn Farm • Snyder’s Autobody • Hunter Station Golf Club and Restaurant
NORTH CLARION 62, BERLIN BROTHERSVALLEY 43
Score by Quarters
Berlin 7 18 7 11 – 43
North Clarion 13 20 16 13 – 62
BERLIN BROTHERSVALLEY – 43
Abby Stoltzfus 0 0-0 0, Alexis Yanosky 3 7-8 16, Gracie Sechler 1 0-2 2, Carlyn Hay 1 0-0 3, Rayne Stoltzfus 3 0-0 8, Morgan Twombly 0 0-0 0, Kylie DeArmitt 2 1-2 5, Peyton Grenke 0 0-0 0, Brianna Hunt 0 3-4 3, Harley Van Glider 0 0-0 0, Jennifer Countryman 2 0-0 4, Emma Peck 1 0-0 2. Totals 13 11-16 43.
NORTH CLARION – 62
Mackenzie Bauer 5 2-3 13, Addison Shaftic 0 0-0 0, Amaya Green 2 2-2 7, Gabby Schmader 5 0-0 13, Gabby DiDolce 0 0-0 0, Claire Kriebel 0 0-0 0, Gwen Siegel 0 0-0 0, Abby Gatesman 6 4-4 16, Trinity Thompson 2 0-0 4, Haley Sherman 4 1-2 9. Totals 24 9-11 62.
Three-pointers: Berlin 6 (Yanoksy 3, R. Stoltzfus 2, Hay). North Clairon 5 (Schmader 3, Bauer, Green).
COUDERSPORT 54, BLACKLICK VALLEY 46
WINGATE, Pa. – Starting fast, District 9 champion Coudersport was able to hold off a late rally by District 6 third-place finisher Blacklick Valley and claim a 54-46 win in the PIAA Class 1A girls’ second round at Bald Eagle Area High School.
Rosalyn Page scored seven points and Lauren Stimaker had five points with a 3-pointer to help Coudersport jump out to a 18-2 lead in the first quarter – it was 18-4 at the end of the quarter.
The Lady Falcons (23-4) quickly expanded the lead to 22-6 in the early portion of the second quarter and led 30-14 at halftime, as Mikayla Gunn ripped a pair of 3-pointers in the second quarter.
Blacklick Valley (18-8), which had entered the District 6 playoffs as the top seed before losing in the semifinals clawed back within 12, 40-28, at the end of the third quarter after Maria McConnell hit a 3-pointer at the quarter horn.
Four straight points by the Lady Falcons to start the final eight minutes got the lead back to 16, 44-28, before a 17-8 run by the Viking got them within seven, 52-45, with 41.8 seconds left.
McConnell was just one of three players to reach the scoresheet for Blacklick Valley netting a game-high 27 points while hitting three 3-pointers. Nineteen of her points came in the second half.
Coudersport’s offense saw four players in double figures with Sarah Chambers leading the way with 14 points. Page added 12 tallies, Gunn had 11 while going 5-for-6 at the free-throw line and Stimaker chipped in 10 points.
Nikki ZImmerman also scored 11 points for the Vikings with Emily Marines adding eight tallies.
The Lady Falcons will play District 10 champion Kennedy Catholic, who defeated District 5 champion Shanksville, 53-45, in the quarterfinals Saturday, March 14, at a site and time to be announced.
Coudersport postseason information is brought to you by: Team Minard • Potter County Family Campground • Close’s Lumber Company • Kaytee’s Family Restaurant in Coudersport • Rhonda Ramsey Hair Salon in Emporium • E& G Auto Plus, Inc. in Coudersport
COUDERSPORT 54, BLACKLICK VALLEY 46
Scores by Quarters
Coudersport 18 12 10 14 – 54
Blacklick Valley 4 10 14 18 – 46
COUDERSPORT – 54
Isabella Portfield 0 0-0 0, Mikayla Gunn 2 5-6 11, Lauren Stimaker 4 1-3 10, Emma Chambers 3 0-1 7, Sarah Chambers 5 4-9 14, Rosalyn Page 5 2-6 12. Totals 19 12-25 54.
BLACKLICK VALLEY – 46
Marissa Skubik 0 0-0 0, Zoie Warcynovich 0 0-0 0, Nikki Zimmerman 3 2-2 8, Emily Marines 4 3-3 11, Maria McConnell 11 2-5 27, Hayley Teederic 0 0-0 0, Madison Smith 0 0-0 0, Morgan Slebonick 0 0-0 0, Emerson George. Totals 18 7-10 46.
Three-pointers: Coudersport 4 (Gunn 2, Stimaker 1, E. Chambers 1), Blacklick Valley 3 (McConnell 3).
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