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Mertiff drops in 24 to lead Golden Eagles to fifth straight victory

Tyler Mertiff scored a game-high 24 points in leading the Tyrone Golden Eagles over visiting Bishop Guilfoyle Maurauders 55-50 Friday evening in boys’ basketball action.
The Marauders came out fast, outscoring Tyrone 7-2 through the opening minutes of the game. Eagles head coach mike Harris said he told his team to relax.
“They came out hard,” he said. “I told our guys, ‘just relax, work the ball, get good shots and play good defense’.”
After falling behind early, Harris’ sqaud got things together quickly. After Mertiff hit his first of four 3-pointers on the night, he fed Dan Domenick the ball underneath the basket to knot the score. The Eagles then put nine more points on the board before quarter’s end, but Guilfoyle hung tough, nailing three shots from behind the arc for a 19-16 lead.
Sophomore Kevin Hershberger gave the Golden Eagles their first lead of the game on his seventh consecutive point. He had tallied the final three Tyrone points in the first quarter and scored two quick buckets for a 20-19 score.
Tyrone continued pouring on the offense, highlighted by a Ben Gummo 3-pointer that capped a 10-4 Eagle run. The run contributed to a 20-point second quarter for Tyrone and a 36-30 lead at halftime.
“We outscored them 20-11, we made our foul shots and we played really aggressive,” said Harris, reflecting on the team’s second quarter performance. :Kevin Hershberger came off the bench and made some big shots. Dan Grazier played with some toughens out there coming off the football injury.”
The pace slowed in the second half as Tyrone held the ball in its backcourt for four straight minutes of the third quarter as. The BG defense huddled in the middle.
Using a stingy and ball controlling offense, the Golden Eagles were able to protect their lead through the fourth and earn their fifth straight win.
Mertiff scored 10 points in the second quarter, part of a 15-point first half, lead to a game-high 24. Harris said with the Eagles’ defense crowding big man Brady Hoover and limiting him to a 7-point night, Mertiff’s performance was all important and contributed to the attitude of the team.
“Tyler really wanted this game bad,” said Harris. “He was really into it out there. We were all into it.”
“It’s a big motivator,” said Harris. “That’s what we talked about tonight. We said we won four straight and we had to keep it going.”
Harris and the Eagles hope to take that motivating factor for a sixth straight in Huntingdon and Indian Valley. Both road games promise to be tough conference clashes.
In jayvee action, the Eagles chalked up their 12th victory against just one defeat with a 36-31 down-to-the-second win. Eleven different Eagles pierced the net.
Tyrone 55 Bishop Guilfoyle 50
BISHOP GUILFOYLE – Foor 4 4-4 13, Destefano 1 0-0 3, Mathis 6 3-3 15, Pacifico 3 1-2 7, Stoehr 1 0-1 2, Toomey 0 0-0 0, Miller 2 3-4 9, Cotto 0 1-2 1. TOTALS
TYRONE – Mertiff 9 2-4 24, Hoover 3 1-5 7, Gummo 1 0-0 3, Ashcroft 1 0-0 2, Domenick 1 0-0 2, Hershberger 3 0-0 7, Grazier 1 2-5 4, Wilson 1 4-4 6. TOTALS 20 9-18 55.
Score By Quarters
Bishop Guilfoyle 19 11 9 11 – 50
Tyrone 16 20 7 12 – 55
Three-point goals: Bishop Guilfoyle 4 (Foor 1, Destefano 1, Miller 2); Tyrone 6 (Mertiff 4, Gummo 1, Hershberger 1)