Bellefonte Red Raiders try to rally, Clearfield holds them off 50-41

Noah Nadolsky (23) of Bellefonte High School drives into the paint against Clearfield High School. (The Express/Tim Weight)

BELLEFONTE — Looking to break into the win column, the Bellefonte boys basketball team fought hard, and for a short time late in the game, it looked as if the Red Raiders were heading that way.

Unfortunately for Bellefonte, the Bison were clutch at the charity stripe when they needed to be and held off a late rally by the Red Raiders to take home the 50-41 victory Wednesday night.

Ben McCartney led the way for Bellefonte as he scored a team-high 11 points.

Teammate Caleb Rockey finished just a point short of a double-double, scoring nine points and pulling down 10 boards in the process.

Reese Wilson and Tave Lynch finished the night with game-highs of 15-points and 13-points, respectively.

“We’re just struggling right now to get the ball in the basket. I thought we played hard especially in the second half. I thought we had so many opportunities to win the game ,” said Bellefonte coach Kris Glunt. “We had a lot of shots that just didn’t fall, they rolled around the rim and we just couldn’t get it to fall. We got good looks on the perimeter we just couldn’t get them to fall. That’s been the story of our season so far.”

Bellefonte’s defense looked strong for most of the game, despite being in a press-style defense for most of the evening.

Going into the final stanza, the Red Raiders trailed 36-27.

It didn’t take long for Bellefonte to attack the Bison lead.

Rockey went strong at the bucket and was fouled going up for a shot in the paint, sending him to the foul line. He hit 1-of-2 starting the comeback attempt, 36-28.

After forcing a turnover via the full-court press, the Red Raiders moved the ball around and then finally it landed in the hands of Nate Tice. Tice stepped behind the arc and sent a triple down, cutting it to a 5-point deficit with 5:38 left.

Again, the Red Raiders forced a turnover and the offense again had an answer.

This time, Noah Nadolsky stole the ball and ended the play with a layup, making it 36-33.

With the bucket, Clearfield called a timeout after throwing the ball away once again.

As the Red Raiders broke the timeout, they brought the ball down and went right into the middle of the action, passing it to Rockey. Rockey did not disappoint as he took the ball up strong in the hole and was fouled in the process, making it an old fashioned three-point play.

He was successful on the extra shot from the line, tying things at 36.

But from there, the Red Raiders offense was contained as the Bison offense was just warming up.

With just 4:11 left, Clearfield continued to attack the Bellefonte defense like it did in the first three quarters.

Wyatt Porter bit a clutch three to extend the Bison lead back to three.

On the following Bellefonte possession, Fortney hit one-of-two from the line, making the game a 2-point affair.

However, the Bison were tough down the stretch as they outscored the Red Raiders on a 13-2 run to take home the victory.

The Red Raiders look to get into the win column today as they travel to play DuBois.

Clearfield 50, Bellefonte 41

CL 9 17 10 14 – 50

BE 5 13 9 14 – 41

Scoring: Clearfield- Cade Walker 2 2-5 6, Johny Gates 2 0-0 5, Wyatt Porter 2 0-0 6, Reese Wilson 6 2-2 15, Tave Lynch 3 6-7 13, Jack Lezzer 0 2-2 2, Karson Rumsley 1 0-0 3. Totals 16 12-16 50.

Bellefonte: Nate Tice 2 0-0 5, Jaymz McClelland 1 0-0 3, Cade Fortney 1 1-2 4, Ben McCartney 3 2-2 11, Noah Nadolsky 3 1-2 7, Bailey Decker 1 0-0 2, Caleb Rockey 2 5-7 9. Totals 13 9-13 41.

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