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Hurray for Mylee-wood: Freshman Harmon Scores 24 to Help Lead Redbank Valley to Blowout Win Over Union, Spot in KSAC Title Game

CLARION, Pa. (EYT/D9) — Mylee Harmon stood on the court at Tippin Gymnasium and smiled as Redbank Valley fans loudly cheered for her.

“Marvelous Mylee!” they bellowed.

(Above photo by Shelly Atzeni)

“Hollywood!” they yelled.

“She’s just a freshman!” they exclaimed.

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Redbank Valley, Keystone, and Union/A-C Valley sports coverage on Explore and is brought to you by Heeter Lumber.

The guard is something of a rock star these days in the hallways of Redbank Valley High School. And for good reason. She’s certainly not playing like a first-year varsity player.

She smiles shyly and peers down at her chestnut fleece slippers when asked about it after the game.

“Yeah, they’ve given me a couple of nicknames,” Harmon says, grinning.

Harmon had another big night on the big stage at Clarion University, scoring 24 points to lead the Bulldogs to a 65-35 victory over Union in the Keystone Shortway Athletic Conference semifinals Thursday night.

Harmon admitted that before the game she had trouble containing her jitters.

But senior Ryleigh Smathers stepped in.

“She was telling me it was just a normal game,” Harmon said. “She said, yeah, it’s a bigger court and there’s more people here, but it’s pretty much the same thing you’ve been doing all year. Just go out and go with your instincts and play your game.”

Harmon’s game has been flourishing lately.

With junior point guard Alivia Huffman in foul trouble early, Harmon entered and handled that role. She scored 12 points in the first half to help stake Redbank to a 29-16 lead and then helped put the game far out of reach with 10 points in the third quarter as the Bulldogs seized complete control, 52-25, after 24 minutes.

(Mylee Harmon was named Hager Paving Incorporated Player of the Game)

Harmon showed off her speed, beating the Union defense down the floor for layups. She also showed off her ballhandling skills and her range from the perimeter.

“She’s just so fast,” said Union coach Ally Kepple of Harmon. “To be a freshman and play like that is amazing.”

Harmon doesn’t mind coming off the bench, as she has all season.

She’s usually the first sub to enter the game and plays as many minutes as the starters.

“It’s good to start, but it’s also good to come off the bench and play a lot of minutes,” Harmon said. “I played the whole second quarter. Even though I don’t start, I’m still getting time and helping the team win and that’s all that really matters.”

Huffman had a big second half after scoring just one point in the first two quarters while relegated to the bench.

Huffman scored 14 points in the second half as the Bulldogs triggered the mercy rule at 62-31 with 3:45 remaining in the game.

Madison Foringer added 10 for Redbank Valley, which will play North Clarion at 6 p.m. Saturday at Tippin for the KSAC title.

“I’m happy with the way we played tonight,” said Redbank Valley coach Chris Edmonds. “Definitely, the bigger court was to our advantage. It gives us more spacing. It gives us more space to cover on defense, but we rotate so well that we can do that.”

Dominika Logue led Union with 12 points. The Damsels hung in there with Redbank Valley in the first quarter, trailing 10-8, before the Bulldogs went on the first of several quick and devastating runs — as they are known to do.

“I have to hand it to Redbank — they have a really good team.” Kepple said. “Every time you read about them, it’s someone else having a big game for them. We’ve really been known for our defense, but we gave up 65 points tonight.”

Kepple, though, isn’t discouraged.

With the District 9 playoffs around the corner, Union is focusing on making a run in those upcoming playoffs.

“We have to bounce back from this,” Kepple said. “This was a good learning experience for us. It was our first time playing at Clarion, so we got used to playing on this type of floor and this type of atmosphere. It will help us going forward.”

Harmon is looking forward to playing on the Clarion University court again Saturday.

“I didn’t realize how big this court was until I got out on it,” Harmon said, laughing. “I wasn’t used to how many 3-point lines there were. I was shocked. But once I was out here, I got used to it real quick.

“I think this energy will carry over to Saturday,” Harmon added. “We have a lot of players who can come out and play hard. The seniors are always there for me, cheering for me, getting my confidence up. They’ve really helped me and I hope we can win it for them.”

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Redbank Valley, Keystone, and Union/A-C Valley sports coverage on Explore and is brought to you by Heeter Lumber.

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