The IUP men’s basketball team will return home after beating Clarion 101–49 Wednesday.

With the last away game of the regular season and last matchup against Clarion, the Crimson Hawks were pulling out all the stops in order to keep themselves placed in a comfortable spot going into the playoffs. 

IUP managed to break through the triple-digit barrier a few times through the season and once again was able to do just that.

By the midway point of the first half, IUP’s lead against Clarion was a little more than 20 points, and the margin only continued to grow throughout the game. By the end of the first 20 minutes, the Hawks had a commanding 35-point lead against the Golden Eagles. 

The Eagles did not have a game like they did in the last matchup versus IUP, in which the point differential was much smaller, keeping it within 5–10 points up until the final few minutes.

The Golden Eagles’ top scorer was not in the starting five lineup. Kass Taylor tallied for a total of 12 points. Taylor helped toward keeping their FT percentage at 100 percent during the first half, getting the most attempts on the team, and making four of six. 

Clarion came into the game against IUP off a three-game losing skid. They were able to tally a scoring total in each game of only 50 or so points. Against IUP, they did not break through that threshold. It was the fourth game in which they could not push past a minimum of 50 points. Whereas, IUP’s lowest scoring game this season was just under 65, and the lowest after that is still above 70. 

A majority of the starting five rallied to each get 10 or more points, except Chucky Humphries (senior, communications media). However, having a low shot count, he still provided a solid percentage on his scoresheet. Humphries went 2–2 on 3-pointers and 3–4 in FGs. He helped give IUP a little extra bump, not to say any other player would have a low scoring affair. 

Top point getters once again are a sort of “Fab 3” of the Hawks: Malik Miller (senior, communications media), Armoni Foster (redshirt sophomore, criminal justice) and Ethan Porterfield (freshman, kinesiology) have once again asserted their strength on the court. 

Each player came out on top, scoring more than 15 points and pushing IUP to keep its top 10 ranking. Though this team has seen much success over the season, it’s important to remember that just because you may be a front runner for the regular season, gives no assurances that playoffs will be any easier once we get there.

With a team that IUP has and the season they’ve had, it can be hard not to get a little confidence. This year has proven to be a record-breaking season on many fronts. From beating the previous all-time win streak in a single season to tallying multiple 100-point  games, then adding individual accomplishments, the Hawks have kept themselves in promising standings and are taking an eager look ahead towards playoffs.

The Crimson Hawks have one game left on the season before the PSAC tournament begins. They’ll wrap up their impressive season against Pitt-Johnstown on Saturday night at the KCAC.

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