“One goal this season was to reach 20 wins,” Tyrone head coach George Gripp stated all the way back in week one. Well, the Eagles finally achieved their goal, defeating Penns Valley 57-37.
Tyrone picked up their 20th win over Penns Valley in another massacre, Thursday night in the final regular season game. It was no surprise that Tyrone could go unbeaten in the Nittany Division, but the way they did it was a surprise to everyone.
The Eagles blew out most of their opponents this season on their journey to their stellar 20-4 record. Steve Catich was the commander of the bunch, as the Eagles finished first in the district, first in the Nittany Division, and second overall in the MAC conference. An impressive season for Tyrone, but the season is far from over as the Eagles look to make their run through the district playoffs next week.
Tyrone started out on fire behind Catich and Matt Brooks as the two combined for 11 of the 16 first quarter points. The score was in favor of Tyrone, 16-7, but the suffering had just begun for Penns Valley as they were almost shut out in the second quarter.
Tyrone tore off a 15-0 run to start out the second quarter, pulling away 31-9 before the Rams scored their first bucket with 1:50 to go in the half. It was smooth sailing for Tyrone as Travis Peterman and Catich hooked up on a sweet ‘alley oop’ where Catich adjusted in mid-air, snagged the ball with one hand, and managed to hang for a few seconds before laying it in.
A spectacular play on offense only led to another spectacular play on defense. Johnny Franco got in on the defensive side in the second quarter as the senior showed no mercy when he stuffed the ball so hard that the ball ricocheted off of the shooter’s head and out of bounds. This sent Penns Valley into the gutter as they trailed by an astonishing, 36-11 at the break.
Tyrone showed one of their more impressive halves on the season, shooting 16-23 from the field and holding the Rams to just 11 points. It was a rout in progress, but Tyrone has had their problems finishing off big leads this season, so a solid second half was needed for Tyrone to secure victory.
Tyrone didn’t let up in the third quarter, as they ran off a 10-2 run to go ahead 49-18 with 1:59 to go in the third. It was looking worse and worse for Penns Valley, but putting up a respectable fourth quarter was a victory in itself for the Rams.
Catich walked into the fourth quarter with 26 points, but was taken out for the break that he well deserved.
Despite trailing 52-21 after three, the Rams managed to force nine fourth-quarter turnovers and pulled off an impressive 16-5 fourth quarter, but it wasn’t enough for the win. Tyrone played absolutely terrible in the fourth, but luckily they were up 31 points entering the fourth quarter, otherwise they would have probably lost a normal game in this situation.
“We played three great quarters tonight, but once again the defensive let downs kill us when we get big leads. I am pleased with the 20-win season, but we need to improve our defense so we can finish off teams at the end of games. We achieved our goal of 20 wins, but now we need to continue the run on into the playoffs where it matters the most,” Gripp stated after the season finale.
Catich led all scorers with 28 points as Nate Dane assisted him with 13 in the win. Tyrone beat the Rams 57-37, despite the death-lock grip on Penns Valley up until the fourth quarter. It was still a 20-point win, but it was an ugly 20-point win. A win is a win, however, and Tyrone finished with one of the most impressive seasons in school history.
Tyrone 57 Penns Valley 37
Tyrone – Catich 11 4-5 28, Dane 6 1-1 13, Brooks 4 0–0 8, Gehret 1 1-2 3, Updyke 1 0-0 3, Peterman 1 0-0 2, Franco 0 0-1 0, Totals 24 6-9 57.
Penns Valley – Deloof 4 0-0 10, Wingard 2 0-1 5, Hockenberry 2 0-0 5, Zerby 2 0-0 5, Montminy 2 0-0 4, Brown 2 0-0 4, Kieffer 1 1-2 4. Totals 15 1-3 37.
Score by Quarters
Penns Valley 7 4 10 16 – 37
Tyrone 16 21 15 5 – 57
Three-point goals: Tyrone-3 (Catich-2, Updyke)
PV-6 (Deloof-2, Wingard, Hockenberry, Zerby, Kieffer)
Strong third-quarter sends Rams home empty-handed
With the score 20-17 at the break, the game looked as though it could go either way. Tyrone put a stop quickly in the third quarter behind Levi Reihart and Jordan Taylor as the Eagles outscored Penns Valley, 18-4. Tyrone went on to win 47-36 in their last regular season game, Thursday night.
Reihart led the way with three treys and 15 points. Taylor added 11 in the victory.
Tyrone 47 Penns Valley 36
Penns Valley – Kieffer 3 2-2 10, Smith 3 0-0 7, Helm 2 1-2 5, Wasson 2 0-0 4, Weaver 2 0-0 4, Montminy 1 0-0 2, Zerby 1 0-0 2, Engle 1 0-0 2. Totals 15 3-4 36.
Tyrone – Reihart 6 0-0 15, Taylor 5 1-2 11, Brokenshire 2 2-2 6, Lynn 2 0-0 5, Henneman 1 2-2 4, McKeehan 1 0-1 2, Murray 1 0-0 2, Black 1 0-0 2. Totals 18 5-7 47.
Score by Quarters
Penns Valley 8 9 4 15 – 36
Tyrone 13 7 18 8 – 47
Three-point goals: Tyrone-4 (Reihart–3, Lynn)
PV-3 (Kieffer-2, Smith)