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Hanging tough; MC boys take SC down to the final period

State College 48, Mifflin County 40

MC 11 11 10  8 – 40

SC  18 2 13 15 – 48

Scoring: Mifflin County – Xavier Vega 4 0-0 10, Cole Knable 2 4-5 8, Conner Zimmerman 1 0-0 2, Cade Penepacker 1 0-0 2, Conner Cherry 4 5-8 13, Jace Shoemaker 2 1-1 5. Totals 14 10-16 50. State College – Johnny Friberg 4 0-0 10, Carson Franks 2 2-3 6, Jack Hurley 4 2-5 10, Trey Oyler 0 1-2 1, Jaden Mitchell 1 0-0 3, Nick Lusk 2 1-2 5. Totals 18 7-14 48.

Played but didn’t score: Mifflin County  – Tyler Metz 0 0-2 0. State College – Nick Pollack 0 0-0 0.

Three-pointers: Mifflin County – Vega 2. State College – Mitchell, Edwards 2, J. Friberg 2.

JV score: State College 48, Mifflin County 44(2OT)

By Kenny Varner

STATE COLLEGE – They were eight there!

As the fourth quarter got underway, the scrappy and gritty play by Mifflin County had their opponents, the State College boys’ basketball teams on the it defenses, trailing by just one as the final stanza got underway.

However, State College’s defense clamped down and their teammate Isaiah Edwards heated up, posting seven of his 13 points en route to the 48-40 victory of the Huskies.

State’s Edwards led the way for the Little Lions with 13 while teammates Johnny Friberg and Jack Hurley both finished with 10-point efforts in the victory.

Conner Cherry finished as the Huskies high scorer as he posted a double-double performance, scoring 13 while pulling down 11 boards.

Also hitting double-digit scoring was the outside presence of Xavier Vega who posted 10 points. He hit two triples in the contest.

“I think we had a lot of guys step up. I thought Xavier Vega played a great first half and played a great game. I thought Conner Cherry stepped up. We did a good job executing,” said Mifflin County coach Scott Gaffey. “We gave up 18 points in the first quarter and then held them to two In the second quarter in our comeback. So our defense was great in the second quarter. We just had some i forced turnovers in the fourth quarter that cost us. And that three that they made at the end of the third quarter was a bit of a back breaker too.”

After falling behind 18-11 after one period, the Mifflin County defense wasn’t going to allow a repeat in the second as it held the Little lions to just two points while its offense mounted a comeback that would put them back in to the game.

The Huskies started its comeback late in the opening quarter, posting the last six points to end the quarter as an 18-11 contest.

Scoring in the last three minutes were Cherry with four and two Vega.

MIfflin County continued its scoring run as the Huskies increased the it to an 11-0 run.

Vega’s second triple of the game started the second quarter scoring while teammate Conner Zimmerman added a field goal to cut the Little Lion lead to 18-16.

Jace Shoemaker put his team to within one as he hit 1-of-2 from the charity stripe with 4:46 left in the half.

On State College’s next possession, Friberg hit the only points for State in the period, upping the Little Lions lead back to three.

But Mifflin County continued to take it to the heart of the State College defense.

Cherry brought his team back to within one as he collected a turnover and made the bucket in traffic, making it a 20-19 deficit.

After another strong Huskies defensive stance, Cole Knable notched things at 20, hitting 1-of-2 from the line.

Shoemaker put in a bucket after Knable’s miss from the foul line, giving the Huskies their first lead of the game, 22-20.

That would how the half would end, the Huskies’ achieved a comeback that they we behind by as many as 18-5 before finishing and going into the intermission with the 2-point lead.

MIifflin County came out strong out of the intermission as it would post a 6-0 run, upping its lead to 30-25 before State College would call a time out.

After the time out, State College would battle back and tie things at 30, highlighted by a game-tying triple by Friberg.

But going into the final seconds, MIfflin County led 32-30.

However, there was just enough time for Edwards to hit a clutch triple just before the buzzer, giving State a 33-32 advantage going into the final stanza.

That seemed to the momentum shifter in the game as State continued to feed the ball inside to Edwards and he did not disappoint as he led his team to the 48-40 victory down the stretch.

In the JV contest, the Huskies proved that they are a team to be reckoned with as they also put their heart and soul in their games, falling 48-44 in a double overtime thriller.

MIfflin County is back in action today as they battle Hollidaysburg.

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