Bobcat Boys Junior High Basketball ‘A’ Team Reaches Mid Point of Season

The Clarion Area Bobcat Junior High Boys Basketball Team is doing well as they have reached the halfway point of their season.

Head Coach Keith Murtha shares this summary of the season so far:

The junior high basketball team has reached mid season with a record of 6-2. Here is a summary of the first half of the season.

The Bobcats opened up Keystone Shortway Athletic Conference (KSAC) play against a much improved Cranberry team and started with a loss 42-20. Patrick Durish led all scorers with 5 points. As is often true in junior high, a large amount of growth occurs between games 1 and 2. Clarion next met A-C Valley and captured their first win 41-24. Freshman Marlon Lewis had a big game, chipping in 13 points.

Next up were the Union Knights, where the Bobcats got off to a fast start and leading 10-3 at the end of the first quarter and held Union scoreless in the second quarter for a 21-3 lead at half. Union came back with a strong third quarter to make it 27-11 and the fourth quarter saw the Bobcats complete a 36-14 win! Jondell Jones and Marlon Lewis each chipped in 8 points.

Clarion next played Keystone in Hoops for Hope, a fantastic cancer awareness and recognition event put on by the Sunshine Committee. The Bobcats and Panthers started the day out with an exciting, back and forth game. Keystone took an early lead 12-8, at the end of the first quarter, the teams held each to 2 points a piece in the second quarter. After halftime adjustments, the teams played to a 12-11 edge for the Panthers. The last quarter saw Clarion edge Keystone 13-11 but Keystone took home the victory 37-34. Anthony Bartley had the hot hand scoring 10 points and shooting 75% from the free throw line.

Clarion next traveled to North Clarion for the Wolves team that is growing up and significantly improved from last season. The Bobcats started slow but got out to a 9-8 first quarter lead, the teams held each other to 5 points in the second quarter, with Clarion leading by 1 at the intermission. Coming out of half time, Clarion took a 5-1 lead and the fourth quarter was 3 to 4 for a final of 22-18 victory for the visiting Bobcats! Jondell Jones again led the offense with 9 points.

Clarion traveled to Moniteau and came out flat, recording their worst quarter to date this season in a 11-5 hole. They started to shake it off in the second quarter scoring 16 to 8 over Moniteau. Leaving the half time score 21-19, the Bobcats pulled ahead. Clarion stepped their defense getting a number of steals to lead the quarter 14-10, 35-29 overall. Moniteau, given their excellent free throw shooting, led the final frame 14-13 but it wasn’t enough as Clarion escaped 48-43. Billy Kahle and Patrick Durish lead the offense with 9 points each

Clarion returned home to meet cross town rivals, the C-L Lions! Clarion, in a reversal of fortunes, played their best quarter of the season leading 18-8. Keeping the pressure up, Clarion held C-L scoreless in the second quarter for a 27-8 lead at half. C-L made a run in the fourth quarter but too little, too late as Clarion took the win 40-30. Jondell Jones scored 16 and Chris Kim and 7th grader Tyson Hooks chipped in 8 points each.

Finally, the Bobcats traveled to New Bethlehem and were in a tightly contested game with Redbank Valley. Clarion opened up with a 12-9 lead, 14-12 narrow lead at the half. The teams were tied in the 3rd quarter, each scoring 8 and the final frame showed the Bobcats finish the game with 14-5 run for a 36-25 win. Billy Kahle as a floor general and Patrick Durish led the Bobcats. Durish dumped 14 points but it was the athletic defense led by Marlin Lewis and Chris Kim that sealed the victory!

The Bobcats have a chance at redemption as they travel to Cranberry Thursday, February 7th and will face the Lions on Monday, February 12th.

(Keep up the good work, Bobcats!!!! Thanks to Coach Murtha for this summary!!)