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Bobcats Host Keystone In Basketball Double-Header As Part Of Hoops For Hope Cancer Awareness And Fundraiser Program, Over $4,000 Raised (01/26/20)

(With Hoops for Hope being the most important story on the night, the Varsity Game recaps will follow below Hoops for Hope story.)

Top photo: half of “Ribbon,” other half in this photo

The Clarion Area Bobcats and Lady Cats Basketball Teams hosted the Keystone Panthers and Lady Panthers on Friday, January 24th, as part of the Hoops For Hope, cancer awareness and fundraiser program fundraiser for the Clarion Sunshine Project at the Clarion Cancer Center. A total of $4,066 was raised during the event.

Some of the large crowd in attendance for “Hoops for Hope”

The afternoon/evening included five games, Boys Junior High; Junior Varsity Boys and Girls; Varsity Girls and Boys.

The Hoops for Hopes presentation, which took place between the Varsity Girls and the Varsity Boys games, featured the Clarion Singers, players, coaches, forming a huge ribbon on the court.

Keystone Cheerleaders in pink T-shirts

The Clarion Singers led those in attendance, with the song “Rise Up,” adopted as an anthem for the fight against cancer. Then the those fighting cancer and survivors were invited to stand in the ribbon. The crowd erupted in a long, enthusiastic round of applause.

Long line of tables, with Silent Auction items

Clarion Cancer Center’s Mary Rearick gave an overview of some of the fine work of the Clarion Sunshine Project. One of the things she mentioned was the project providing for $180,000-plus, in help for local patients’ bills since their inception in 2016.

Cancer survivor Linda Schirmer shared a touching account her journey.

Linda Shirmer at the microphone, Mary Rearick on left

Also on hand, was Mrs. Claus, an organization, which has been in operation for almost twenty years. The group conducts one big fundraiser a year, with the proceeds providing funds to help local cancer patients with donations when they are going through treatments, by giving them goodie bags with such things as pillows, journals and other things to help.

Cathy Weaver and State Representative Donna Oberlander at Mrs. Claus display

Mrs. Claus also provides wigs and more. Member Cathy Weaver said, “Any need they have, we try to help with. It helps local people with local money.”

Mrs. Claus member Cathy Kahle showing one of the sweatshirts, made especially for the event.

Founder Tiki Kahle said, “Mrs. Claus was founded in 2004. We raise money so we can help cancer patients in our area, with comfort items, gas cards, grocery cards and just support so that they know they are not alone. And we want to help them with their battle with cancer.

“Both Cathy and I are survivors. We’ve both had cancer and we are both cancer survivors. We have been able to see people that have made it; they’ve survived. They fought the battle, and they are there.

“Now we’ve also lost people. But we’ve been able to see that by us providing wigs and doing the things that we do, we hope that we are helping people as they do the battle.”

It was great seeing the two schools coming together for this great cause.

What a Great Night for a Great Cause!!!!

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Varsity Girls: Clarion 39 – Keystone 37

Jordan Best led the Lady Cats with ten points, in a game that was close throughout, with neither team leading by more than seven points.

Keystone held a 6-3 lead after one. With Keystone leading 14-9, in the second, Clarion reeled off six straight points, on a bucket by Noel Anthony and a pair of free throws each by Payton Simko and KK Girvan, KK’s coming with just 1.1 seconds showing on the clock. With the late run, the Lady Cats took a one point lead into halftime. Keystone’s Emily Lauer scored all eight of the Panthers’ points in the quarter.

The strong finish to the first half continued for the Cats. Best hit a pair of free throws to open the second half and after a basket by Keystone’s Natalie Bowser, Clarion’s Girvan, Kait Constantino and Anthony each hit baskets. The 14-2 run put the Cats up 23-16. But with an 11-7 Panthers’ run the Clarion lead was just three points, 30-27 headed to the fourth.

The Panthers regained the lead, at 34-33 with 4:10 left in the game, on a three-pointer by Maddie Dunlap. A bucket by Best and a pair of free throws by Eva Lerch, had the Cats up 37-34 with 2:03 on the clock. After Keystone tied the game at 37-all, Constantino put the game away with a pair of free throws.

Girvan finished, followed Best, with nine points, for the Lady Cats. Contstantino had 8 points, Simko had 6 points, Lerch scored 4 and Anthony had two.

Lauer led Keystone with a game-high 16 points and Jozee Weaver had nine.

The Lady Cats will travel to West Sunbury, on Wednesday (January, 29th) to take on the Moniteau Lady Warriors.

Varsity Boys: Clarion 43 – Keystone 29

Tip-off for Varsity Boys “Hoops for Hope” game

Keystone led 9-7 after one, but Clarion held a 14-7 advantage in the second, with six Bobcats scoring, to take a 21-16 lead into the half. Skylar Rhoades led the Cats in the quarter with four points.

Both teams scored seven points in the third and Clarion took a 28-23 lead into the final stanza.

Nick Frederick opened the fourth with a bucket to move Clarion’s lead to seven at 30-23. Keystone closed the gap to 30-27 after Isaak Jones hit a pair of buckets. But Clarion went on a 13-2 game finishing run, to set the final.

Frederick led Clarion’s balanced attack, which saw eight players in the scoring column, with nine. Rhoades and Cal German had eight points apiece. Hunter Craddock registered 6 points, Beau Verdill had 5, Josh Craig had 4, Christian Simko followed with 2 and Kyle Porciello had one.

Troy Johnson scored 11 points and Isaak Jones had eight to lead the Panthers.

Clarion will host Moniteau on Monday (January 27th).