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Juniata boys fall in nail biter to Mifflinburg

Mifflinburg 51, Juniata 47

JU   9 14 13 11 – 47

MI  13 13 12 13 – 51

Scoring: Juniata – Jacob Condo 1 0-2 2, Jamie Bailer 5 1-3 13, Jace White 7 1-3 13, Emmanuel O’Donell 4 2-2 10, Max Lauver 3 0-0 9. Totals 20 4-9 47. Mifflinburg –      Dylon Doebler 5 2-3 14, Seth Kline 1 0-0 2, Dante Colon 4 0-0 8, Connor Griffith  3 1-1 8, Jacob Young 9 3-4 19.

Played but didn’t score: Juniata -Yadiel Ortiz 0 0-0 0, Jeff Zimmerman 0 0-0 0 Mifflinburg –       Rylee Stahl 0 0-2 0.

3-point shots: Juniata – Bailer 2, Lauver 3. Mifflinburg – Griffith.

By Kenny Varner

SPRING MILLS – Basketball season picked up where it left off Monday as the Juniata Indians boys basketball team went head-to-head with Mifflinburg Friday in Penns Valley’s Annual Ram Winter Jam.

It was a perfect way to start the Classic Tournament as the Wildcats ‘ and Indians’ contest wasn’t settled until the final minutes of the contest.

In the final stanza, the Indians were able to rally back and take the lead going into the 3:00 mark after trailing 40-36, thanks to early buckets by Jacob Condo, Bailer and  O’Donnell making it 43-40 with 3:09 left. On buckets by Emmanuel O’Donell  and Condo’s were just field goals while an earlier triple by Jamie Bailer helped spark things.

But it would be the Wildcats that would get the last run as Middleburg would take the contest 51- 47.

Leading the way for Juniata were Bailer and O’Donell with 13-point efforts.

Rounding out the double-digit scorers was Jace White with 10.

Mifflinburg were led by Jacob Young’s 19-point effort and Dylon Doebler with a 14-point effort.

Going into the third, the Indians trailed by only three points but that would quickly change as it was able to pull down clutch rebounds and cut down on second chance shots for the Wildcats.

“We made some little mistakes that cost us opportunities to score tonight. And we gave them some opportunities to score,” said Juniata coach Al Ream. “But I told the kids in there that we are going to play some tough competition and  Mifflinburg is an aggressive team and it doesn’t matter what their record is they are going to play in your face and we want the kids to play against that type of team.”

It also was able to turnovers that were a factor in the first two periods.

For the second time in the game, the third quarter provided the Indians a chance to outscore Mifflinburg, this time 13-12.

Early on, the Indians fell behind 13-9 after a strong straight right to the bucket attack by Mifflinburg. The run was paced by Dylan Doebler’s two runs at the bucket that which led to two lay ups.

The Wildcats came quick out the block, posting an early 7-2 advantage before Juniata called a time out to regroup.

The tune out paid off as the Indians went on a 7-2 run to cut into the lead, railing just 11-9 with 50.0.

Picking up clutch early points were Emmanuel O’Donell, Jace White and a late triple by Max Lauver.

Rebounding wise, the Indians held their own.

However, the Wildcats came out strong once again as the second quarter got underway, going on an 9-2 run to increase its lead to 24-11.

But the Indians refused to go into the half with a double-digit deficit.

After another time out, the Indians were now the aggressors and went on a run of their own, 12-2.

A the buzzer sounded for the intermission, Juniata had battled back to trail 26-23.

Max Lauver had nine while O’Donell and Jace White added six to lead the Indians.

Middleburg advances to the championship at 7:30 tomorrow while Juniata plays in the consolation game at 6:30.

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