Clarion University Men’s and Women’s Basketball Fall to Gannon

Harden Pullium Clarion
CLARION, Pa. – The Clarion women’s basketball saw its bid to clinch a PSAC Tournament pushed back to another day, as the Golden Eagles battled but ultimately fell 73-68 to the Gannon Lady Knights in overtime.

(Photo: Amesha Harden-Pullium. Photo courtesy of Clarion University Athletics)

Clarion (13-11, 10-8) will take another crack at it on Wednesday when they host Slippery Rock at Tippin Gymnasium.

Delrika Jones-Carey played an exceptional game despite foul trouble, scoring a team-high 19 points on 7-of-15 shooting while also pulling in nine rebounds. Amesha Harden-Pullium played all 45 minutes of action and tied for the team-high in assists (4) with Tyra Polite. Polite finished with 18 points, seven rebounds and four helpers.

Clarion rallied from a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter, coming all the way back to take a lead with just seconds remaining. Chelsea Rourke put Gannon ahead 53-43 with 5:52 to play but the Golden Eagles fought back to get to even footing. Jones-Carey went on a personal 5-0 run to cut Gannon’s lead to 53-48 with 4:17 left in regulation, and Jordan Bekelja popped a three-pointer on the next possession to make it just a two-point game. Jones-Carey finally tied it at 53 with a jumper in the paint, and Bekelja punctuated the 13-0 run with another trey to make it 56-53.

The teams traded possessions down the stretch, with Polite putting Clarion ahead 60-58 with 13 seconds left on a pair of free throw makes. Maggie Mitchell got the equalizer with just 4.8 seconds left, though, making a jumper from the head of the key to send the game to overtime.

The teams went back and forth in overtime, with Polite tying it at 65 with a pair of free throw makes at the 1:20 mark. The Lady Knights embarked on a 7-0 run, though, silencing the Golden Eagle offensive attack for nearly the rest of the game in taking the win.

Neither team got off to a stellar offensive start, with Gannon shooting 35.5 percent and Clarion 33.3 percent in the first quarter. The Lady Knights carried a 13-11 lead into the second quarter and led for much of that period, going ahead 16-15 with 7:49 to play. Mitchell made a jumper with 43 seconds remaining in the half to make it 24-21 at the halftime break.

MEN’S BASKETBALL IS GANNON’S 14TH STRAIGHT WIN

CLARION, Pa., – The Clarion University men’s basketball team was defeated at home against Gannon Saturday evening by a final score of 80-60. The loss moves the Blue and Gold to 6-18 on the season, including a 3-15 mark in PSAC play. The Golden Eagles will return to action Wednesday evening when they host Slippery Rock at Tippin Gymnasium.

BJ Andrews led the Eagles offensively Saturday night, finishing with a team-high fifteen points. Andrews, Jamani Pierce, and Manny Powell each tied for the team lead in assists with three, while Jamal Bailey led the Blue and Gold in rebounds with six. As a unit, Clarion shot 42.6% from the floor, including 32% (8-25) from beyond the three-point arc.

Clarion traded chances and hung tight against the Golden Knights for much of the first half. A pair of huge three-pointers from Justin Grant helped CU knot things at 18 with just under ten minutes to play in the first, however Gannon took advantage of a lightning-quick transition game to counter the Eagles hot-hand from outside the arc, utilizing 22 second-chance points to gain the advantage. After twenty minutes of play, CU trailed 40-24.

The Blue and Gold would continue to battle in the second half, however Gannon’s high-tempo offense and full court press proved difficult for Clarion to break through. Combined with an absolutely dominant effort down low that saw the Golden Knights outscore Clarion 44-18 in the paint, Gannon walked out of Tippin Gymnasium with it’s fourteenth conference victory of the year.


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