Tyrone may have been 14-23 from the foul line, but the Eagles missed out on four one-on-one attempts.
The Golden Eagles missed the first of two bonus free throws and Tyrone would have needed every one of their foul shots to win this one as Central moved passed the Eagles with a 57-49 victory on the 20th Anniversary of a Mountain League Central Dragon basketball team. A ceremony took place before the game started to honor the anniversary.
As Tyrone struggled early on, Central jumped out to an early 8-2 run as Chad Saylor led with six of the first eight points for the Dragons.
Tyrone had a tough time early in the first, but with 2:47 remaining in the quarter, Central led 12-4 until Steve Catich, Byron Kost and Doug Morrow combined for eight straight points as they went on an 8-2 burst to end the quarter.
Tyrone trailed 14-12 after one, but with momentum switching sides, Tyrone looked to dominate the rest of the game, but that didn’t happen.
Tyrone started off the second quarter on a 6-0 run, going up 18-14 as Kost knocked down his second trey of the night to cap off the run.
Central called a timeout to re-group. Zach Bechtel immediately stepped in and scored five consecutive points including a trey to put the Dragons back up one (19-18). Both teams had trouble knocking down shots as the defensive intensity picked up throughout the rest of the game.
With a one-point lead, Central found them in foul trouble as they went over the bonus fouls with 4:25 to go in the half. Doug Morrow stepped onto the foul line where he would miss an opportunity for a second shot and two points. Instead, Tyrone trailed 19-18 with 4:25 remaining in the half.
After a Jordan Albright lay-up with 3:06 to go, Tyrone ran out the next six points going up 24-21 with 1:43 left in the half. Adam Corle knocked down a trey and Morrow went one of two from the line and hit a jumper during the run.
With the clock winding down, Central managed a steal and lay-up from Kody Stiffey with :53 seconds left in the half. This was the last score from either team, freezing the score at 24-23 in favor of the Eagles.
After an even first half, the Dragons took the upper hand in the third quarter as they held Tyrone to just four points. Central pulled off a 12-4 third quarter outing with Stiffey and Zach Hamm combining for nine. The Dragons led 35-28 due to Tyrone’s poor shot selection, missed foul shots and lay-ups that kept them out of sync in the third quarter.
The year has been about comebacks for Tyrone all season, they trailed eight after three and it was time for another comeback opportunity.
After four straight Stiffey points, Tyrone trailed by their biggest deficit on the night, 39-28. To make matters worse, Wilson missed two more one-and-one attempts, which could have resulted in four points.
“Well, we missed probably eight lay-ups in the first half and eight in the second. That’s 32 points we could have possibly had that we didn’t convert on,” Tyrone coach Mike Harris said. “You can’t win games by missing lay-ups. We have to convert all of our lay-ups. We were 14-23 from the foul line, not including the extra one-on-ones, which would have made us 14-27 from the line. You have to be able to rise above and make the wide-open lay-ups we missed and make those foul shots. We just didn’t do that tonight.”
After an early 41-31 lead with 6:08 remaining in the game, Wilson and Catich scored four straight, cutting it to just 41-35, but Saylor was their for an answer as he net another from the corner.
With 4:53 to go in the game, Tyrone trailed eight points and still had zero players in double figures yet.
After trading five straight buckets with each other, the game remained an eight-point spread, 51-43 with 1:26 remaining in the game. Would Tyrone make the comeback or was it too late?
Corle kept the Eagles hopes alive as he stole three straight passes and, scoring four straight with 1:01 to go as they cut the lead in half to 51-47. After the third steal, Corle fired up a trey that would have cut the lead to one, but it trickled out into Hamm’s hands where he pushed the ball ahead to Bechtel where he was fouled.
Bechtel knocked down both, keeping the lead at a distant six (53-47) with :21 seconds left in the contest.
Tyrone managed just two points and finished the game missing two more foul shots, leaving no hope for a win in Central.
The Eagles fall to 9-14 as they will enter the playoffs and go up against the fourth seed Bishop Guilfoyle, a rematch from last year’s playoff showdown. Tyrone had just one player in double-figures tonight, Catich, which happened for the first time all season long as he scored 12 points in the loss.
“Well we have to stop Sean McConnell. He’s their “go-to-guy” and we have to find a way to shut him down. We have to prevent the easy baskets and do a really good job defending him. If we do those things, we’re fine. I feel we can beat any team if we are fundamentally sound during a game. If not, the results won’t be in our favor that day.”
Tyrone will play Bishop Guilfoyle on Monday, February 20th at Hollidaysburg Area High School.
Central 57 Tyrone 49
Tyrone: Wilson 0 8-12 8, Corle 4 0-0 9, Morrow 2 2-4 6, Catich 5 2-2 12, Kost 3 0-0 8, Barr 1 2-4 4, Brockett 1 0-0 2, Totals 16 14-23 49
Central: Stiffey 8 2-2 18, Kurtz 0 3-4 3, Saylor 5 2-2 12, Ritchey 1 0-0 2, Bechtel 2 8-8 13, Albright 1 0-1 2, Hamm 3 1-2 7. Totals 19 16-19 57
Score by quarters
Tyrone 12 17 4 21 49
Central 14 9 12 22 57
3 pt FG: Tyr-3(Kost-2, Corle) Central-1(Bechtel)
Tyrone JVs lose by 10
It’s hard to pick up a win when a team has zero players reaching double-figures. Tyrone found out the hard way as they could not get it done on offense, losing 43-33 in a low-scoring battle between both squads.
Central 43 Tyrone 33
Tyrone: Hoover 2 1-2 5, Morrow 3 0-0 6, Stover 0 0-2 0, Levinson 3 0-0 8, Branstetter 1 0-0 2, Gehret 3 1-1 7, McCaulley 0 2-4 2, Brooks 0 0-2 0, Etters 1 1-2 3. Totals 13 5-13 33
Central: Ritchey 6-1-1 13, Krehl 3 2-2 8, Reid 3 0-1 6, Greenleaf 1 4-4 6, Kurtz 1 1-2 3, Ewart 2 2-4 6, Mind 0 1-2 1. Totals 16 11-16 43
Score by quarters
Tyrone 9 6 7 11 33
Central 6 10 10 11 43
3 pt FG: Tyr-2(Levinson-2)