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North Clarion, Johnsonburg Advance to D9 1A Boys’ Semifinals

ST. MARYS, Pa. – North Clarion used a 20-4 run sandwiched between halftime to propel itself to a 65-48 win over Port Allegany in the District 9 Class 1A quarterfinals at St. Marys High School.

Click here for recaps from the Class 3A semifinals from Thursday

The Wolves (14-9) trailed 29-22 with 2:22 left in the first half after an 11-0 Gators’ run.

But North Clarion finished the half on a 9-0 run and then started the second half with an 11-4 spurt to take control of the game. A full-court defense seemed to be the spark for the Wolves.

“We are a transition team for sure,” North Clarion head coach Andy Bish said. “When we get the defense going and get steals, we are a tough team to beat. We can put some points up in a hurry. That definitely helped us out tonight.”

Chase Schmader had a huge night for the Wolves finishing with a career-high 23 points topping his previous career best of 21 set in North Clarion’s final regular-season game against Forest Area.

“Chase is our only senior,” Bish said. “It was good to see the senior step up in a big situation.”

Zander Hargenrader chipped in 11 points for North Clarion with Nathan Banner adding nine and Keeven Weaver and Sam Minich eight each.

Freshman Howie Stuckey paced Port Allegany with 22 points including hitting six 3-pointers. Stuckey, though, only scored five points after halftime.

“The big thing was, who ever was one him was not in help defense,” Bish said. “We told them you are all over him with a hand up because he looked like Steph Curry (in the first half). Everything he threw was burying the net.”

The Gators leading scorer, Brandon McCaslin, got into early foul trouble and was limited to six points, his fewest tallies since December.

The victory clinches a PIAA playoff berth for North Clarion, the Wolves first since 2013 when they finished third in District 9 before losing to Vincentian Academy in the opening round of the PIAA playoffs.

Up next for North Clarion is top-seeded and unbeaten Elk County Catholic at a time, date and place to be determined. The Wolves will be looking for their first District 9 title game appearance since 1999.

NORTH CLARION 65, PORT ALLEGANY 48

Score by Quarters

Port Allegany 8 21 8 11 – 48
North Clarion 13 18 19 15 – 65

PORT ALLEGANY – 48

Jordan Card 0 0-0 0, MacKenzie Elliott 1 0-0 3, Brandon McCaslin 1 4-7 6, David Talkington 3 0-0 7, Howie Stuckey 8 0-2 22, Tyler Lashway 1 0-0 2, Jordan Bell 2 4-4 8, A.J. Edgell 0 0-0 0, Anton Freyer 0 0-0 0. Totals 16 8-13 48.

NORTH CLARION – 65

Chase Schmader 7 7-9 23, Nathan Banner 3 3-6 9, Keeven Weaver 4 0-0 8, Zander Hargenrader 4 2-2 11,Sam Minich 3 2-2 8, Jesse Schmader 1 2-2 4, Logan Minich 0 0-0 0, Matson Higgins 0 0-0 0, Kyle Mills 0 0-0 0, Tyler McCord-Wolbert 0 0-0 0, Korey Mills 0 0-0 0, Noah Meyers 1 0-0 2. Totals 23 16-23 65.

Three-pointers: Port Allegany 8 (Stuckey 6, Elliott, Talkington). North Clarion 3 (C. Schmader 2, Zander Hargenrader).

JOHNSONBURG 52, CAMERON COUNTY 44

ST. MARYS, Pa. – Using a game-ending 10-4 run over the final 1:43, seventh-seeded Johnsonburg knocked off second-seeded Cameron County, 52-44, in the District 9 Class 1A quarterfinals at St. Marys High School.

The Rams (11-12), who struggled to score for most of the fourth quarter but also held Cameron County scoreless for a large chunk of the quarter, led 42-40 following a 3-pointer by the Red Raiders Adam Shaffer with 1:43 to play.

But Johnsonburg was able to hit its free throws down the stretch to get the victory.

The Rams led 39-35 going to the fourth quarter but neither team scored for the first 4 ½ minutes of the quarter.

Kacey Raubenstrauch led Johnsonburg with 17 points with Ryan Kilhoffer adding 13.

Marcus Brown had a game-high 20 points for Cameron County (15-8). Shaffer chipped in with 10.

Johnsonburg, which qualified for the PIAA playoffs for the first time since 2014, the year after they finished second in the state, awaits the winner of Friday’s Oswayo Valley vs. Otto-Eldred game.

JOHNSONBURG 52, CAMERON COUNTY 44

Score by Quarters

Johnsonburg 12 16 11 13 – 52
Cameron Co. 12 13 10 9 – 44

JOHNSONBURG – 52

Kacey Raubenstrauch 2 13-14 17, Ryan Kilhoffer 5 3-6 13, Drew Akers 3 0-0 8, Austin Green 2 0-0 5, Tyler Singer 2 0-0 5, Nick Bliss 1 0-0 2, Jake Sheldon 1 0-2 2, Totals 16 16-22 52.

CAMERON COUNTY – 44

Marcus Brown 6 0-0 20, Adam Shaffer 3 2-2 10, Derek Rieder 2 2-2 6, Jake Walters 2 0-2 4, Mo Yarborough 0 2-2 2, Bryce Bauer 1 0-0 2, Totals 14 6-8 44.

Three-pointers: Johnsonburg 4 (Akers 2, Green, Singer), Cameron County 8 (Brown 6, Shaffer 2).



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