Shoemaker strong for Huskies in Mid-Penn loss

LEWISTOWN — Good things can sometimes come out of tough defeats, especially lessons learned.

Such was the case Friday for the Mifflin County boys basketball team as Jace Shoemaker played a strong game in the middle and battled for all 19 points he scored in his team’s 77-42 loss against Central Dauphin East in Mid-Penn Conference action.

He was also a force defensively, keeping the middle clogged and making the Panthers earn their points.

“Jace has been amazing. He has done everything we have asked him to do. He practices hard and is always the first one on the ground to fight for the loose ball,” Mifflin County coach Scott Gaffey said. “These sophomores are moving up from playing ninth grade to now playing varsity. The speed of the game is completely different.”

Central Dauphin East had its outside shot down as it finished with 10 3-pointers. Four of those buckets came from guard Donovin Medina, who finished with 17 points.

Leading the way offensively for the Panthers was Amir Jackson with 22.

Despite getting down early, the very young Huskies squad battled until the end as they posted 26 points in the second half, just 12 less than the Panthers who posted 38.

“We’ve been proud of our guys for fighting until the end, reguardless of what the score is. We’ve preached we got to get better every minute,” Gaffney said. “I feel for the most part we’ve been able to do that and we are hoping tomorrow that all our hard work will show against Central Mountain.”

Going into the intermission, Mifflin County found itself down 39-16.

After an opening Panther bucket, Shoemaker went strong to the hole and was fouled in the process. He made both free throws for the first of his 12-point quarter.

Tyreke Allen then responded with a bucket of his own.

Noah Wright made it 43-20 when he hit his lone bucket of the game with 5:20 left in the period.

Wright may have been held to two points, but he made up for it with pulling down seven boards and dishing the ball out for his teammates to shoot.

Back came Central Dauphin East as Obiaze Chinatu went strong to the hoop and was fouled in the process as he scored the bucket. However, his free throw attempt hit iron and the ball went back to Mifflin County.

With the ball back in the hands of Shoemaker, he went right back inside and was hacked when he went up for the bucket. He hit one-of-two.

By this time both teams were attacking the inside lanes.

Amir Jackson upped his team’s lead to 47-21 hitting on a bucket in traffic. Again, the Panthers missed the free throw.

Conner Cherry stepped up on the following possession, hitting his first of two buckets, closing it to 50-24.

Shoemaker was starting to sizzle as he battled for a rebound and went back up with the shot, keeping pace with the Panthers shooting in the period.

Shoemaker would score four more in the period but it would be the Panthers outscoring the Huskies the rest of the way in the quarter, 15-10.

When the two teams went into the final stanza, Mifflin County got six points on triples by Eric Shilling and Owen Wise.

Mifflin County (0-21) hopes to pick up a win today in its season finale against Central Mountain.

Central Dauphin East 77, Mifflin County 42

CENTRAL DAUPHIN EAST

Donovin Medina 6 1-2 17, Aaron Jones 3 0-0 6, Amir Jackson 8 3-4 22, Xavier Samuels 1 0-4 2, Shawn Lewis 1 0-0 3, Brian Tatum 3 1-3 8, Jaiden Baltimore 2 0-0 4, Obiaze Chinatu 2 0-1 4, Cole Willuski 1 0-0 2, Tyreke Allen 4 0-0 9. Totals 31 5-14 77.

3-point goals: Medina 4, Jackson 3, Lewis, Tatum, Allen.

Did not score: Adrian Henderson.

MIFFLIN COUNTY

Noah Wright 1 0-0 2, Mark Shilling 1 0-0 3, Xavier Vega 1 0-1 2, Jayden Jackson 2 0-0 5, Conner Cherry 2 0-0 4, Jace Shoemaker 7 5-8 19, Tyler Metz 2 0-0 4, Owen Wise 1 0-0 3. Totals 17 5-11 42.

3-point goals: Wise, Shilling, Jackson.

Did not score: Isaac Stewart, Adam Sheetz, Cade Pennepacker.

Score by quarters

Central Dauphin East 25-14-29-9 — 77

Mifflin County 7-9-20-6 — 42

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