ALTOONA — What a wild 24 hours for the Bedford boys’ basketball team.
On Wednesday night, Richland beat Westmont Hilltop to earn the fourth and final seed in the LHAC playoffs, knocking Bedford out of contention.
However, Westmont protested the game as the Richland head coach was given two technical fouls in the JV game, yet coached in the varsity game. Westmont won the protest and the game, giving Bedford the fourth seed.
On Thursday, just nine hours after getting the word that the Bison earned the right to play Bishop Guilfoyle in the LHAC semifinals, the Marauders jumped out on top early and never let up in a 73-52 win over the Bisons.
Bishop Guilfoyle will play Greater Johnstown for the LHAC championship on Saturday at a time and site to be determined.
Guilfoyle hit 14 threes and had four players in double figures, while none of the starters for Bedford reached double-digit scoring.
To add injury to insult, Bedford senior Drew Hall left the game on a stretcher after getting screened by a BG player in the third quarter.
Bedford had a 4-3 lead after the opening two minutes of the game with baskets by Miles Washington and Joey Koontz, but the Marauders went on a 10-2 run to take control of the game as the Bisons were cold from the floor.
Kyle Ruggery scored six straight point in that run on his way to a game-high 23, while Bedford’s Steven Ressler had the points for the Bisons in that BG spurt.
“We got out to a slow start,” said Bedford coach Jason Ressler. “We needed to hit the shots, and we didn’t.
“Our offense was stagnant all night. We never got in a rhythm. We didn’t have enough movement.”
Both teams heated up in the second quarter, but BG still outscored the locals, 23-17, to take a 36-23 lead at the half. Hall had all eight of his points in the second quarter, but BG’s Michael Montecalvo got three threes and scored all 13 of his points in the period.
The Marauders put the Bisons away in the third quarter with an 18-6 run with Ruggary scoring 12 of the points for an insurmountable 54-28 lead.
Earlier in the quarter, the Marauders were up 44-26 and were running an offense with a lot of screens. Hall ran directly into one of the BG players and fell to the floor. After lying there for a couple seconds, the game was stopped and medical personnel came onto the floor. An ambulance was called, and Hall left the court via a stretcher to a round of applause from fans from both sides.
In the fourth quarter, the Bisons hung with the home squad with freshmen Kevin Ressler and Max Washington leading the way. Ressler hit three threes, while Washington made three field goals including a three for seven points. The two combined for 16 of the Bisons’ 19 points in the fourth, but BG held on for the 73-52 win.
“We never got on track,” said coach Ressler. “The playoff is different than the regular season. I didn’t think were nervous, but hopefully this is something that we can get over. We played hard, but we didn’t make the shots.
“I want them to get used to the postseason and important games for them to get better.”
Kevin Ressler led the Bisons with 12 points, while Hall and Steven Ressler had eight apiece. It was the first game this year that Steve Ressler did not make a three.
Aside from Ruggery scoring 23, Montecalvo hit for 13, Will Helton made four threes for 12 points, and Alex Wood added 11 for the Marauders.
Bedford will play Westinghouse on Thursday, Feb. 20, at 7 p.m. at Taylor Allderdice High School in Pittsburgh for the District 5/8-AAAA Subregional.
LHAC Semifinal BISHOP GUILFOYLE 73, BEDFORD 52
Bedford 6 17 10 19 — 52
Bishop Guilfoyle 13 23 18 19 — 73
Bedford (52) — Steven Ressler 4 0-0 8; Drew Hall (2) 0 2-2 8; Miles Washington 1 0-0 2; Mercury Swaim (2) 0 0-0 6; Joey Koontz 2 2-2 6; Ethan Weber 1 0-0 2; Kevin Ressler (4) 0 0-0 12; Max Washington (1) 2 0-1 7; Brett Wilson 0 0-0 0; Zach Vent 0 0-0 0; Kaden Anderson 0 1-2 1; Spencer Ebersole 0 0-0 0. Totals: (9) 10 5-7 52
Bishop Guilfoyle (73) — Will Helton (4) 0 0-0 12; Kyle Ruggery (3) 7 0-1 23; Michael Montecolvo (3) 1 2-2 13; Alex wood (2) 2 1-1 11; Patrick Haigh (1) 1 0-0 5; Luke Adams 0 0-0 0; Michael Woolridge 1 1-2 3; Andrew Yanoshak 1 1-1 3; Konner Kiesewetter (1) 0 0-0 3; Casey Smith 0 0- 0; Fabian Machado 0 0-0 0. Totals: (14) 13 5-7 73.