Dog-gone foul trouble.
Playing without Jason Clune and Jake Gregor good portions of the second half due to foul trouble, Meadville dropped a 69-59 decision to Seneca on Friday night in the opening round of the annual Sertoma Holiday Basketball Tournament at the House of Thrills.
The Bulldogs (2-5) will play Cochranton — which suffered a 58-54 loss to St. Francis Catholic of Canada — tonight at 6 in the consolation game. Seneca (4-2) faces St. Francis for the tournament championship at 7:30 p.m.
Continuing its trend of nip-and-tuck games, the MASH unit had a legitimate excuse for swallowing another tough loss.
Trailing 32-29 with 7:27 left in the third quarter, Clune — who scored seven early points to give the Bulldogs a 16-9 lead — was called for his third personal foul and MASH coach Mark McElhinny elected to sit him for the remainder of the quarter.
McElhinny found some positives with his leading gun Clune sitting on the bench.
Establishing himself as MASH’s go-to player, Gregor scored on consecutive layups and perfectly set up Armoni Foster for a 3-pointer to give the ’Dogs a 40-34 lead with 4:08 remaining in the third quarter.
Enter the whistle again.
Clinging to a 44-39 lead, Gregor picked up his fourth personal foul with 1:59 showing in the third quarter and McElhinny had no choice but to sit him too.
Seneca jumped on the Clune/Gregor-less Bulldogs.
The Bobcats’ Gus Johnson went inside and scored twice to cut MASH’s lead to 44-43 heading into the final period.
McElhinny inserted both Clune and Gregor back into the game at the beginning of the fourth quarter and the duo made an immediate impact as Gregor fed Clune with a razor-sharp pass and the sophomore sensation completed a three-point play to push the Bulldogs’ lead to 47-43 with 7:27 left in the game.
After Seneca scored six straight points to take a 49-47 lead, Clune — getting a friendly bounce from the rim — popped in a 3-pointer from the left corner to give the Bulldogs a 50-49 lead with 6:01 showing on the clock.
Enter the dog-gone whistle again.
Driving to the hoop, Gregor — who was having a solid all-around game — was called for his fifth personal foul with 5:28 left in the game. The versatile Gregor finished with 11 points, four assists and three steals.
The Bulldogs felt the loss of Gregor.
Completely taking over the game, Seneca’s Jarrett Pound — who transferred from Cathedral Prep — scored nine straight points to give the Bobcats a 58-53 lead with 2:38 left in the game.
The smooth-shooting Pound — who threw down a dunk in the first half — finished with a game-high 31 points.
McElhinny was well aware of Pound’s elite skills heading into the game.
“We saw him play and we knew what to expect,” said the Bulldogs’ first-year coach. “He is an exceptional player.”
The ’Dogs never recovered from Pound’s stomping.
Obviously, McElhinny touched on the Bulldogs’ foul trouble first thing afterwards, “We need to play smarter ball early. I had to keep an eye on Jason, Jake and even Faizon (McClure) throughout the game.”
Concluding, the MASH boss looked at the bigger picture, “I told the kids afterwards that they have to realize this a Christmas tournament. We need to stay together during this break and our main goal is to be ready to play when the league starts up.”
Despite the foul problems, Clune had another strong game with a team-high 24 points. He was 4-for-8 from 3-point range.
Dog-gone foul trouble.
Scots top Knights for PSAC crown
Home sweet home.
Edinboro University’s Valerie Majewski, the former General McLane standout who returned to the ’Boro this season after two years at the University of Buffalo, was in her old comfort zone Sunday afternoon.
NCAA MEN'S BASKETBALL: Hollins helps Minnesota beat Penn State
The pressure on Minnesota will ratchet up in a few days. This afternoon was for reflection -- and some fun.
Austin Hollins had 14 points and three steals in his last scheduled home game, a fitting senior spark for the Golden Gophers in an 81-63 victory over Penn State on Sunday to set up a rematch between these teams in the first round of the Big Ten tournament.
Reed on a roll, wins a World Golf Championship
He wore black pants and a red shirt, his Sunday colors. He took a lead into the final round, quickly expanded it with a pair of birdies and then relied on his short game to keep everyone chasing him. He even played it safe off the 18th tee, caring more about the trophy than the final score.
Breese closes career with second straight title
Sam Breese now knows how it feels to be perfect.
Breese finished with an undefeated season record of 35-0, with win No. 35 being the sweetest one of all.
The Lakeview senior stared into the face of the pressure that comes with defending a title, and made the Giant Center in Hershey feel like home. Undeniable talent and an incredible determination are the hallmarks of Breese’s approach to wrestling, and for the second straight year, he can call himself a champion.
McLane’s Wheeling comes up short in final
On a night when six wrestlers repeated as PIAA Class AAA champions, Chance Marsteller and Thomas Haines stole the show.
Marsteller, of Kennard-Dale, and Haines, of Solanco, became the 11th and 12th four-time gold-medal winners in Pennsylvania history. Marsteller (166-0) also is the first four-time champion to complete his career without a loss since Cary Kolat (1989-92) and the fourth overall.
Serra outlasts Cardinals
For the second time in as many days a basketball team from Cochranton High School played a private school from the WPIAL, put forth a valiant fight, but ultimately had its heart broken.
On Friday, it was the Cochranton boys team, which fell to Vincentian Academy 95-85.
Breese lone local to reach Class AA finals
A busy and entertaining Day 2 of wrestling at the PIAA Individual Wrestling Championships in Hershey came and went, as did the dreams of a gold medal for a handful of local wrestlers.
The one local wrestler that doesn’t apply to is Lakeview’s Sam Breese, who had the Giant Center crowd in aw during his two matches Friday. The two bouts equated to two wins, which means a shot a defending his championship.
Lee, Wheeling survive Day 2 in Hershey
Ehrin Lee’s smile following his quarterfinal win Friday at the PIAA Individual Wrestling Championships told the whole story.
Lee has had his eyes on the state championships all season long, and just getting there wasn’t enough. The Titusville 160-pounder has wrestled like one of the best grapplers in the state during the tournament thus far, and his 3-2 overtime win over Northampton’s Bobby Fehr proved that if nothing else, he’s one of the four best wrestlers in his weight class.
Cards can’t slow Vincentian
The starters on the Cochranton boys basketball team probably slept like logs on Friday night.
They left every ounce on the hardwood of Meadville High School’s House of Thrills, going up against the high-intensity attack of Vincentian Academy in the opening round of the PIAA Class A playoffs.
McLane rolls past Neshannock
Sarah Jay has made a habit of presenting her players with in depth scouting reports prior to each and every game.
But the report she handed them on Neshannock, the Lady Lancers’ first round opponent in the PIAA Class AA playoffs, was nothing like they had seen before.
- More Sports Headlines
- Scots top Knights for PSAC crown