Tigers edged out by MT 53-48


By Christopher Hoppes - [email protected]



McClain junior Jensen Knaff passes the ball to a teammate during the game Friday night against Miami Trace


Chris Hoppes | Civitas Media Service

The Miami Trace Panthers and McClain Tigers renewed acquaintances on the hardwood at Miami Trace High School Friday night for an SCOL match-up.

It was a back-and-forth tussle all night, with Miami Trace able to come away with a 53-48 victory.

The game provided a good-sized holiday crowd with plenty of entertainment and excitement on this night.

Miami Trace junior DeAndre Pettiford was the game’s leading scorer with 17 points.

Fellow Panther junior, Blake Pittser, scored 15 and sophomore Darby Tyree had nine points.

McClain had a trio in double figures, led by senior Cody Hardesty with 14 points.

Junior Jacob Starkey scored 12 points for the Tigers and junior Mat Barton had 11 points.

“Any time you’re in a little bit of a rough stretch, and the kids aren’t having as much success as they wanted, it can be difficult,” Miami Trace head coach Rob Pittser said. “McClain brings strengths in areas of the game, mainly, on the rebounding, they were very physical on the inside.

“I think our rhythm, offensively, was much more fluid tonight than it has been,” Pittser said. “The changes we’ve made, specifically against man defense in the half-court, are starting to sink in. The other night was the first night of it. It’s a process; the spacing is different than the other offense that we were running.

“They made a lot of tough shots in the first half,” Pittser said. “We really felt we defended well enough that we could have been up by double figures. Making shots is the great equalizer and making three-point shots can really help you out.

“I thought both of our sophomores (Cameron Carter and Darby Tyree) really grew up tonight,” Pittser said. “We needed a win and we got a win and it came in a team fashion. This should be something to build on.”

“Our execution on offense is coming,” McClain head coach Jesse Mitchell said. “It’s getting better. I had some kids playing out of position. I thought Randall Mischal had one of his better games. I had to put him out on the wing. He likes to play out there, but he’s more effective inside. Owen (O’Connor) was playing on the outside and he was learning on the fly.

“Cody Hardesty and Jacob Starkey have been our two constant (players), offensively and defensively,” Mitchell said. “I don’t know if I’ve seen a kid jump as high as (Tyrae Pettiford) for as tall as he is. He’s super athletic. He’s gotten better with his ball skills and I thought Jacob Starkey did a heck of a job on him tonight.”

McClain had the early lead with scores of 5-2 and 7-4.

Miami Trace went on a 9-0 run to take a 13-7 lead.

McClain outscored Miami Trace, 5-3 in the final minute of the opening period with Skyler McDonald hitting a three-point shot just before the buzzer for Miami Trace to give the Panthers a 16-12 first quarter lead.

Miami Trace built a lead of as many as nine points (25-16) in the second quarter.

However, McClain responded down the stretch with three three-pointers and a stick-back bucket, while Panther junior Seth Leach had back-to-back baskets as the first half came to a close with the Panthers holding a 29-27 lead.

McClain hit seven three-point shots in the game, with three from Hardesty and three from Barton, while the Panthers made six treys; Blake Pittser with three, and one each from DeAndre Pettiford, Tyree and McDonald.

The second half featured each team having a very nice defensive quarter.

In the third quarter, McClain held Miami Trace to nine points, while scoring 14 to take a 41-38 lead. The shot of the night was likely the turnaround three-pointer by Hardesty to end the third period with the Tigers up, 41-38.

In the fourth quarter, Miami Trace held McClain to seven points, while scoring 15 to take the win, 53-48.

McClain was up early in the fourth, 44-38 after an old-fashioned three-point play by senior Randall Mischal.

Tyrae Pettiford blocked a shot inside for the Panthers then led to Pittser hitting a three at the other end, tying the game at 46-46.

McClain led for what proved to be the final time in the game on a free throw by Mischal, 47-46.

The Panthers took the lead for good with a pair of free throws from DeAndre Pettiford with 1:44 to play in the game.

Miami Trace took a 51-47 lead on a rebound and put-back by DeAndre Pettiford.

Hardesty sank a free throw to pull McClain to within one possession, 51-48.

With 12.9 seconds to play, Miami Trace missed the front end of a 1 and 1.

McClain missed a shot to tie the game and sophomore Cameron Carter made two free throws with 2.8 seconds left for the final 53-48.

Elsewhere around the SCOL Friday, the Washington Blue Lions edged Clinton-Massie, 64-63; Wilmington rolled over Hillsboro, 101-32 and Chillicothe defeated East Clinton, 56-54.

Miami Trace (now 3-4 overall, 3-2 in the SCOL), is back in action tonight at home against Logan Elm. The freshman game starts at 4:45 p.m.

McClain (now 3-4 overall, 2-4 in the SCOL) is in action tonight at Zane Trace High School.

SCORE BY QUARTERS

MT 16 13 9 15 — 53

Mc 12 15 14 7 — 48

MIAMI TRACE — DeAndre Pettiford 4 (1)-6-17; Blake Pittser 3 (3)-0-15; Darby Tyree 2 (1)-2-9; Seth Leach 2-0-4; Tyrae Pettiford 1-1-3; Skyler McDonald 0 (1)-0-3; Cameron Carter 0-2-2; Jacob Batson 0-0-0; Keondrick Bryant 0-0-0. TOTALS — 12 (6)-11-53. Free throw shooting: 11 of 15 for 73 percent. Three-point field goals: Pittser, 3; De. Pettiford, Tyree, McDonald. Combined field goal shooting: 18 of 42 for 43 percent. Three-point field goal shooting: 6 of 17 for 35 percent. Turnovers: 11. Rebounds: 19 (6 offensive). Assists: 6. Steals: 10. Blocks: 2.

McCLAIN — Cody Hardesty 0 (3)-5-14; Jacob Starkey 6-0-12; Mat Barton 1 (3)-0-11; Randall Mischal 2-2-6; Jensen Knaff 0 (1)-0-3; Owen O’Connor 1-0-2; Landree Gray 0-0-0; Brock Dean 0-0-0. TOTALS — 10 (7)-7-48. Free throw shooting: 7 of 9 for 78 percent. Three-point field goals: Hardesty, 3; Barton, 3; Knaff. Combined field goal shooting: 17 of 41 for 41 percent. Three-point field goal shooting: 7 of 21 for 33 percent. Turnovers: 18. Assists: 10. Steals: 4. Blocks: 1.

Panthers-Tigers split j-v, freshman games

In the j-v game Friday, McClain beat Miami Trace, 38-19.

McClain (5-2 overall, 4-2 SCOL) was led by Bryson Rickman with nine points.

Camden Yates had eight points, Tyler Jackson scored seven, Justin Osborne had five, Landree Gray scored three and a trio of players, Dakota Duncan, Brennon Godfrey and Dakota Irvin each scored two points.

For the Panthers (1-6 overall, 1-4 SCOL), Matt Fender led with seven points.

Ross Matthews Jr. scored five, Dakota Bolton scored four, Tiante Connell had two points and Adam Ginn scored one.

In the freshman game Friday, Miami Trace beat McClain, 32-25.

For Miami Trace (3-4, 2-3), Ross Matthews Jr. led the game with 16 points.

Austin Brown had eight points, Drew Batson seven points and Austin Mathews had one point.

For McClain (2-4, 1-4) Jacob Howard led with nine points.

Trevor Tite had five points, Kobe Penwell and Zane Mustard both had four points and Eric Anderson scored three points.

McClain junior Jensen Knaff passes the ball to a teammate during the game Friday night against Miami Trace
http://timesgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/web1_JensenKnaffvsMiamiTrace12182015.jpgMcClain junior Jensen Knaff passes the ball to a teammate during the game Friday night against Miami Trace Chris Hoppes | Civitas Media Service

By Christopher Hoppes

[email protected]

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