MEADVILLE — Keeping its perfect record intact with a grind-out road win at District 10’s Meadville, the Brookville Raiders basketball team edged the Bulldogs 69-67 Tuesday night.
Griffin Ruhlman poured in a career-high 24 points and hit four key free throws in the fourth quarter to help the Raiders hold on for the win.
The Raiders (8-0) trailed by as many as 10 points at 27-17 early in the second quarter, but trailed 35-32 by halftime.
Meadville led 53-50 going into the fourth quarter. Danny Lauer, who scored 18 points with seven coming in the final eight minutes, put the Raiders up at 56-55 one minute into the fourth.
The Raiders got big buckets from Hunter Geer, twice putting them up five points in the fourth and another putback after a third shot attempt by the Raiders hitting the glass on a possession that put them up 66-62 with 1:05 left in the game.
Ruhlman’s second set of free throws put the Raiders up 68-62 with 30.2 seconds left while Lauer hit one of two freebies with 6.4 seconds left to put the game out of reach at 69-65 before Meadville hit an uncontested layup as time expired to set the final score.
The Raiders finished 13-for-16 from the foul line.
Ian Pete scored nine points while Geer finished with eight.
Meadville (4-5) got 24 points from Khalon Simmons while Lucas Luteran and Jack Burchard scored 17 and 13 points respectively.
Thursday, the Raiders host Punxsutawney before next Tuesday’s home date with Vision Academy, a prep school based in Brooklyn, N.Y.
In last week’s game:
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 29
Brookville 44, DuBois 37
In a closely fought game for the DuBois Holiday Tournament title, it was the Raiders who grinded out a seven-point win for their first title there since 2017 and the eighth overall since playing in DuBois during holiday week in 1981.
Brookville took a five-point advantage (23-18) to the half, only to see DuBois come out strong in the third quarter with a 6-1 run to tie the game at 24-24 before the 6-minute mark.
The teams traded scores from there, with Brookville taking a slim 28-26 lead into the fourth. The Raiders pushed the lead back out to five (36-31) on a Griffin Ruhlman free throw with 3:55 to play, but DuBois countered with a layup from Chooch Husted after he got a steak in the open court.
DuBois then took a timeout down three (36-33) with 3:16 remaining, but tournament MVP Danny Lauer of Brookville then drilled a long 3-pointer for the final dagger just before the 3-minute mark to promptly give the Raiders a 39-33 lead.
The Beavers never recovered from Lauer’s bomb and only got as close as four points (39-35) the rest of the way as Brookville made enough free throws (3 of 8 in final minute) to keep DuBois at bay and improve to 7-0.
Lauer, who scored 10 points Tuesday night, scored 14 points Wednesday to match teammate Clayton Cook for game-high honors.
Cook, who pulled down six rebounds and blocked two shots, was named to the All-Tournament Team along with teammate Griffin Ruhlman, who also reached double figures vs. the Beavers with 10 points.
DuBois was led by the duo of Chooch Husted and Joey Foradora, who made the All-Tourney team for the Beavers. Husted scored a team-high 11 points to go along with seven rebounds and three blocks, while Foradora had 10 points, seven in the opening quarter.
“Credit to them (DuBois). They kept coming back,” said Brookville coach Dalton Park. “We’d get a five-point lead, they bring it within two ... then we’d get another little spurt and break it open and get back to five and they’d come back again.
“It was a back-and-forth game, and I thought a well-played game for both teams. Danny’s shot there in the fourth was big, and breaking the press, it just so happened he was the guy open. He didn’t take many threes (it was his only one of the game actually), but when he did he knocked it down.”
Geer finished with five rebounds and Ian Pete added four rebounds, two assists and two steals. Ruhlman had two rebounds, two assists and two steals.
The Raiders shot 52 percent (15-for-29) from the field while DuBois, due to a bad night at the 3-point line at 3-for-18, shot 34 percent (15-for-44).
The other Brookville holiday titles in DuBois were won in 2010, 2007, 2002, 2001, 2000 and 1987.
The Courier-Express Sports Editor Chris Wechtenhiser contributed to this story.