By Chris Rossetti
CLARION, Pa. – Clarion-Limestone outscored DuBois Central Catholic by four in overtime to get a 68-64 win over the Cardinals in the District 9 Class A boys’ quarterfinals Friday night at Clarion High School.
The game was tied at 57 at the end of regulation after each team failed to convert a chance to win the contest in the final 10 seconds of regulation.
DCC then took a pair of leads in the overtime session – first at 59-57 and then at 61-60 with 2:48 to play – before C-L closed the extra session on an 8-3 run thanks to four points and an assist by RJ Laugand, who had a game-high 29 points for the Lions.
Both teams had a chance late in regulation to win the game.
First, C-L saw a golden opportunity go by the wayside when Laugand was called for an offensive foul with 8.7 seconds left and the game tied at 57.
DCC, then came down and had two shots to win the game before the buzzer, but neither fell forcing overtime.
Overtime was fitting considering the way the fourth quarter played out.
DCC, which led 42-38, going to the fourth, never trailed in the quarter but never led by more than four in the quarter either C-L forging five ties in the quarter including three times coming from behind in the final 3:12 to knot the contest.
The Cardinals led by four, 48-44, after an offensive putback by Dane Aucker with 4:56 left, but C-L twin towers of Kolton Stiglitz and Dan Callen tied the game at 48 with 4:18 to play.
DCC then took a 51-48 lead on a basket by Dallas Gray, who had a fantastic second half with all 15 of his points coming after halftime including 11 in the third quarter, and a free throw by Dom Goldbach.
But that was the largest lead DCC enjoyed the rest of the way, as Josh Kahle tied the game at 51 on a 3-pointer off a pass from Callen at the 3:12 mark.
DCC then proceeded to take three more 2-point leads, the last at 57-55 on an Aucker basket at the 1:24 mark, the junior though failed to convert an old-school 3-pointer on the play, and Laugand tied the game at 57 for the Lions with a pair of charity shots with 1:11 to go.
In overtime, the lead changed hands four times with C-L grabbing it for good, 62-61, on a Stiglitz basket with 2:31 to play. Laugand followed with a pair of free throws at the 1:15 mark making it 64-61, and the Lions looked poised to put the game away when they came away with a steal and Laugand led a perfect pass to a wide open Stiglitz under the basket. But the 6-foot-5 junior missed the shot and the committed his fifth foul on the rebound with 43.6 seconds to play giving DCC life.
Ayden Hanes hit both free throws, his only points of the game, to get the Cardinals back within one, 64-63, but eight seconds later Laugand found Kahle for a layup to make it 66-63 C-L.
Alec Shaffer-Doan got DCC back within two, 66-64, when he hit one of two free throws with 17.1 seconds left, but Laugand nailed a pair of daggers from the charity stripe at the 13.5-second mark to seal the victory.
DCC used a 10-0 first-quarter run to build the biggest lead of either team, 10-2, four minutes into the game before C-L fought back and tied the contest at 16 at the end of the first quarter.
The Lions then grabbed a 24-23 lead after outscoring DCC 8-7 in the second quarter despite neither team scoring in the final 3:54 of the quarter following a Tim Kentoski basket for DCC. C-L’s last points of the half came on a Stiglitz basket at the 4:10 mark.
C-L got the lead to two, 27-25, early in the third quarter before an 11-3 run by DCC with Gray scoring nine of the points, got the Cardinals out to a 38-31 lead with 3:05 left in the frame.
Laugand added 11 rebounds and at least six or seven assists and three or four steals to go with his 29 points. Freshman Dan Callen added 14 points, and Stiglitz 10 for the Lions.
Aucker had a team-high 20 points to go with seven rebounds to lead DCC. Gray had six rebounds to go with his 15 points, while Kentoski added 10.
C-L will face Ridgway in the semifinals next week at a time, date and location to be announced.
NOTES – Free throws were a difference in the game with C-L going 16 of 21 and DCC going 11 of 21.
CLARION-LIMESTONE 68, DUBOIS CENTRAL CATHOLIC 64, Overtime
Score by Quarters
DCC 16 7 19 15 7 – 64
C-L 16 8 14 19 11 – 68
DuBois Central Catholic – 64
Dom Goldbach 3 3-6 9, Ayden Hanes 0 2-2 2, Ryan Anderson 1 2-2 5, Dane Aucker 7 4-5 20, Tim Kentoski 5 0-0 10, Alec Shaffer-Doan 1 1-4 3, Dallas Gray 7 1-2 15, Christian LaParne 0 0-0 0, Duncan Park 0 0-0 0, Nick Szczerba 0 0-0 0, Neil Fitzpatrick 0 0-0 0. Totals 24 11-21 64.
Clarion-Limestone – 68
Brent Slater 2 1-2 6, RJ Laugand 8 13-16 29, Kolton Stiglitz 5 0-0 10, Dan Callen 6 2-3 14, Jesse Pezzuti 0 0-0 0, Noah Rankin 2 0-0 4, Cesar Lopez 0 0-0 0, Christian Bakewell 0 0-0 0, Josh Kahle 2 0-0 5. Totals 25 16-21 68.
Three-pointers – DCC 3 (Aucker 2, Anderson). C-L 2 (Slater, Kahle).