Junior High Lady Cats Basketball Opens Season Strong (11/06/19)

(Article by Coach Christina Toth, photos by Jeanine Evanicki)

Thursday, October 24th Game v. Union

A Team Score: Clarion 27 – Union 11

Gia Babington-4 pts. Anna Gribik- 3 pts. McKayla Kerle – 2 pts. Abi Frederick – 2pts.

For the first game of the season, the girls were able to get rid of those jitters. Leading into the 4th quarter the score was 15-9 and Union took a final run in the 4th to close it.  The Cats never stopped fighting and giving it their all on the floor.  I was proud of everyone’s efforts for their first game of the season.

B Team Score: Clarion 22 – Union 18

Sophie Babington-8 pts. Natalie Durish – 5 pts. Brenna Armstrong – 4 pts. Emily Troese-2 pts. Delaney McNamara – 2 pts. Jordyn Smith – 1 pt. 

B Team had a great start to their season with a win against Union.  They worked as a team and showed great skills both on the offensive end and on the defensive end. It was a solid team oriented win with all the girls doing a tremendous job on the rebounding and defensive fronts. We started slow on the offensive end, due in large part to first game butterflies, but were able to turn defense into good transition offense.

Monday, October 28th Game v. North Clarion

A Team Score: North Clarion 17 – Clarion 16

Taylor Alston-6 pts. Anna Gribik-4 pts. Gia Babington – 3 pts. Mady Baker-2 pts. McKayla Kerle-1 pt.

What a very close game with North Clarion.  It went back and forth all game and North Clarion pulled ahead by one with less than 30 seconds left on the clock.  The intensity of the stands being full and the fast paced game, sure gave the A Team athletes a comparable atmosphere to a varsity game.  This game prepared the girls for intense game environments and at the end of the game, the girls really learned more about the game of basketball and strategy above all else.

B Team Score: North Clarion 16 – Clarion 12

Sophie Babington- 6 pts. Delaney McNamara – 2 pts. Natalie Durish – 2 pts. JJ Wilson- 2 pts.
North Clarion definitely had some more game experience than B team, as it was evident from the get-go that they were a little better at handling a tight basketball game. The girls still played a solid game, and stuck around in the end only loosing by 4. Coach Toth is excited for a rematch with them at the end of our season.

(Photo by Jeanine Evanicki)

Tuesday, October 29th Game v. A-C Valley

A Team Score: Clarion 24 – A-C Valley 5

Alexis Sobalvarro- 7 pts. Kylie Johnson, Taylor Alston, Gia Babington, Anna Gribik – 4 pts .McKayla Kerle – 1 pt.

The A team had a huge team effort to take their first win of the season against A-C Valley.  The girls utilized their fast paced man-to-man defense to make some quick steals at the start of the second half to get some fast break layups. 

As the game continued, Clarion’s rebounding was a highlight of the game both offensively and defensively.  Help defense was also successful as the girls had a very nice win today!

B Team Score: Clarion 23 – A-C Valley 13

Sophie Babington – 7 pts .Natalie Durish – 6 pts. Emily Troese, Jordyn Smith, Brenna Armstrong, Hayley Cratsley, Delaney McNamara – 2 pts.

B team came out on fire, jumping out to an early sizeable lead, propelled by great team defense and smart offensive decisions on fast breaks. Coach Toth was pleasantly surprised at how well the girls rebounded from their first loss, and came together as a collective group to earn another victory.

Wednesday, October 30th Game v. Forest Area

A Team Score: Clarion 25 -Forest Area 22

Anna Gribik – 8 pts. Alexis Sobalvarro – 6 pts. Abi Frederick – 4 pts. Mady Baker – 3 pts. Gia Babington, Mercedes Cunningham – 2 pts.
What a great first home game for the Lady Cats! The girls had another close game, but came up on top against Forest.  The team had a great effort as they continually used great help defense to stop a couple of undeniably strong opponents. 

The Clarion athletes were able to minimize our turnovers and control the pace of the game.  The rebounding monster, Alexis Sobalvarro also deserves a lot of credit who helped wrangle in multiple offensive second and third shot chances and limit Forest to one shot per possession.  Way to go Cats!
B Team Score: Clarion 24 – Forest Area 20

Sophie Babington – 8 pts. Delaney McNamara – 6 pts. Natalie Durish – 4 pts. JJ Wilson, Brenna Armstrong – 3 pts.

Another solid team effort by the B team led to a 4 point victory, in a game that was not as close as the score indicated. Our girls had a solid team effort as usual, with everyone contributing on the defensive end in order to seal the win.

It was another good showing by our B team, who have continued to communicate, hustle, and show increased situational awareness regarding the game of basketball.

(Thanks to Coach Christina Toth for this article and to Jeanine Evanicki for the photos. Good start to your season, Lady Cats!!!!)