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Huntingdon’s early attack too much for Bellefonte

By Kenny Varner
BELLEFONTE – It was a tough night on the hardwood for the Lady Raiders Thursday night against the Bearcats.
Huntingdon came out shooting lights out offensively while its defense, lead by its swarming full court press, limited Bellefonte to just 13 first half points as it fell to the Bearcats 75-54.
But the old saying it not how you start it’s how you finish might give Bellefonte coach Adam Gearhart some comfort as the Lady Raiders came out in the second half and muscled their way back into the game outscoring the Bearcats 41-29, taking the second half and bringing the score to within 20 in the final minutes.
Huntingdon’s Maddie Gearhart led all scorers with a 17-point effort. Gearhart, who scored 10 in the second quarter alone, outscored the entire Bellefonte team in the first half 15-13.
Teammate Kynnedy Miller also finished in double digits as she finished with 14.
Bellefonte also had its own double-digit scorers as well as Maddie Steiner exploded for 17-second half points and teammate Maddie Tice finished with 12.
The Red Raider loss came just a day after a exhausting victory against rival Bald Eagle Area on Wednesday.
“We were a complete opposite of last night. We knew the press was coming and we knew it was coming and we didn’t handle it. We didn’t do it well at all. We took a time out and we just continue to do the same things,” Gearhart said. “ Thats what it comes down to.”
In the first quarter, the Lady Bearcats made quite a statement to open the game, going on a 15-0 run to start the game.
In the run, Allie Troup had six points while Gearhart hit a triple and a jumper for five.
Tice, who finished with a double-double, scored the first Bellefonte bucket in a lay up with 2:45 left in the period.
After holding the Bearcats in tact on the following possession, Bellefonte cut it to 15-5 when Mal Smith hit a triple.
But the Bearcats would have an answer outscoring Bellefonte 4-2 to take the first quarter advantage at 19-7.
Huntingdon’s offense mixed with its full court press continued to extend the lead for the visitors.
The Bearcats outscored the Red Raiders 27-6 in the period.
After trailing the Bearcats 46-13 at the intermission, the Red Raiders played for nothing but pride with the hopes of getting back into the game.
Huntingdon and Bellefonte tied at as the third quarter got underway.
But the Red Raiders rallied back into in the final stanza.
Abbey Bruni opened the fourth with a jumper with 7:11 left, making it 61-29.
Bellefonte continued to take a 12-2 run, closing the Red Raiders to 23.
In that run, Steiner tallied six points in the attempt while Sara DeHaas chipped in four.
Bellefonte would continue to end things on a semi positive note as they outscored the Bearcats the rest of the way, 12-10.
“They fought. They played hard to the end. I never question the effort,” Gearhart said. “We have some learning to do. We have to learn situations. We have to learn how to follow game plans and stick to game plans and not be intimidated.”
Bellefonte will look to rebound Tuesday as they meet up with Penns Valley.

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