Clarion Men and Women Hoops Team Top Bloomsburg

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CLARION, Pa. – The Clarion University men’s basketball hung on for a win over Bloomsburg University Saturday afternoon at Tippin Gymnasium by a final score of 77-70.

(Photo courtesy of Clarion University Athletics)

The Blue and Gold will return to action December 18th when they head out on the road to take on West Liberty University.

BJ Andrews lead the way on the score sheet for the Blue and Gold, finishing with a team-high 22 points. Manny Powell led the eagles in assists with seven, while Akeem Williams picked up a team-high seven rebounds. Williams also added two assists and a block on the afternoon.

The Golden Eagles clung to a narrow 37-34 lead at the half, thanks in part largely to an efficient effort from behind the three-point arc. The Blue and Gold went 5-7 (71.4%) from beyond the arc in the first 20 minutes, including a pair from guard Cameron Grumley.

Although their three-ball efficiency would take a hit in the second, Clarion would continue to bank points from inside, with Jamani Pierce Andrews both asserting themselves physically to keep the Golden Eagles in it. Bloomsburg would claw back to within a point with less than half of the second remaining, but big shots from Grumley and Andrews gave the Blue and Gold the cushion they needed to hold on.

WOMEN GRAB SIXTH STRAIGHT VICTORY

CLARION, Pa. – The Clarion women’s basketball team matched their longest winning streak since the 2007-08 season with another double-digit home win, defeating Bloomsburg 74-53 at Tippin Gymnasium on Saturday afternoon.

The Golden Eagles (7-4, 4-1 PSAC) have now won five straight games dating back to Wednesday, Nov. 30. They’ve also won five straight PSAC games, matching the aforementioned five-game streak in 2007-08.

The Golden Eagle defense locked down the Huskies after a wide-open first half, holding Bloomsburg to just a 32.3 field goal percentage in the final 20 minutes of action. That says nothing of the ability of Clarion to disrupt the Huskies’ offensive possessions, in that the Golden Eagles forced 20 turnovers and outscored Bloomsburg 20-2 in points off turnovers.

The turning point of the game came in the second quarter. Bloomsburg held a 21-18 lead after the first but Clarion blitzed them to the tune of a 22-9 advantage in the second quarter, giving the Golden Eagles a 40-30 advantage entering the halftime break. Clarion outscored the Huskies in every subsequent quarter en route to the 21-point win, their fifth-straight double-digit margin of victory.

Tyra Polite led the team with a well-rounded effort, contributing a game-high 17 points to go with eight rebounds, five assists and a steal. Jordan Bekelja added 13 points, four rebounds, three assists and two steals, and Amesha Harden-Pullium threw in 12 points on the afternoon.

Polite put the Golden Eagles ahead for good with a make in the paint at the 6:34 mark of the second quarter, and from there it was off to the races for Clarion. In the span of just 2:27 the Golden Eagles went on an 8-0 run, turning a one-point deficit into a seven-point lead thanks to a putback by Polite. All told, Clarion ended the quarter on a 16-5 run and at one point led by 12 points on a layup by Jen Straw. Taylor Montana added a layup with 20 seconds left to cut Clarion’s lead to 40-30 at the half.

The advantage dipped below double-digits briefly in the third quarter but Clarion bounced back, taking a 51-38 lead when Harden-Pullium took a feed from Quorea Pearyer and drained a three-pointer to force a Bloomsburg timeout. Bekelja made it a 16-point edge with a three-pointer at the 2:45 mark as Clarion held the Huskies without a field goal for more than four minutes, scoring only with 42 seconds left to break the drought.

Bloomsburg never really threatened in the fourth quarter, only pulling as close as 11 points with 4:47 left. Harden-Pullium buried a dagger three to quash the short Husky run, and Clarion cruised the rest of the way for the win.


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