WELLINGTON — Clearview came into its Patriot Athletic Conference crossover game at Wellington with a simple plan — jump on the Dukes early and never give them any hope.
Things worked out perfectly during the Clippers’ 76-65 victory.
Clearview scored the game’s first 10 points and never let its lead dip below five to remain undefeated at 8-0 overall and 6-0 in the conference.
“We wanted to come out in the beginning and step on it, kind of set the tone for the rest of the game,” Clearview senior guard Deuce Martin said. “That was our game plan and we were able to execute it. That was great for our momentum. That’s the tone we want to set for each game.”
Clearview scored 26 points in the first quarter, taking advantage of nine Dukes turnovers.
Wellington (6-4, 4-2 PAC) was able to settle down in the second quarter, and a Josh Kindel basket with three seconds left before halftime cut the Clearview lead to five at 39-34.
But the third quarter was all Clippers. They pushed the lead out to 14 points and were never threatened again, using a 9-2 run to open the second half to put the game out of reach.
“They smelled blood and went after it,” Wellington coach Dan Gundert said. “It seemed like they were everywhere. They beat us to every loose ball and every loose rebound. They just played a lot harder than us tonight.”
The Dukes cut the Clippers’ lead to single digits three times in the third quarter, but each time Clearview hit a shot to push the lead back out to 10 or more.
Jamel Billings, who scored 16 points, hit a pair of those spirit-breaking jumpers — one a heavily contested deep 3-pointer from the right corner.
“I live for the big moments,” Billings said. “Whenever my team needs a big shot or a big defensive stop, I try to do it. I’m a senior now and feel like it’s my turn to do it.”
DeAri Todd led Clearview with 18 points while Javon Todd added 17 and Martin finished with 16.
Trey Bealer paced the Dukes with 15 points and 11 rebounds.
“Against a good basketball team we have to play better,” Gundert said after the Dukes committed 27 turnovers. “We didn’t play very well, and that’s a lot of credit to them. That’s a very good basketball team. We knew we were going to have to bring our best effort and we didn’t do that tonight.
“They were up in our face defensively and pressuring us. We didn’t take care of the basketball and gave them a lot of easy shots early. Then we didn’t do a good job of responding to that. We got it to six at one point, but it wasn’t like we ever really made runs at them.”
Contact Mike Perry at 329-7135 or email@example.com.
Clearview 76, Wellington 65
CLEARVIEW (76): Deuce Martin 6-2-16, Jamel Billings 6-3-16, DeAri Todd 7-4-18, Javon Todd 6-4-17, Evan Berrios 1-0-2, Jaylen Paschel 3-0-6, Gee Newton 0-1-1. Totals 29-14-76.
WELLINGTON (65): Trevor Porter 5-2-12, Josh Kindel 5-2-12, Tristan Arno 1-0-2, Ryan Whitaker 1-0-3, Maxwell Joppeck 2-2-7, Trey Bealer 6-3-15, Colton Schmidt 6-0-13, Grant Kidd 0-1-1. Totals 29-10-65.
Clearview 26 13 24 13 — 76
Wellington 19 15 17 14 — 65
Three-point goals: Clearview 4-14 (Martin 2, Billings, J. Todd), Wellington 3-9 (Joppeck, Schmidt, Whitaker). Field goals: Clearview 29-61 (47.5 percent), Wellington 29-50 (58 percent); Free throws: Clearview 14-17 (82.3 percent), Wellington 10-19 (52.6 percent); Rebounds: Clearview 29 (Martin 8), Wellington 40 (Bealer 11). Turnovers: Clearview 12, Welington 27. Total fouls: Clearview 19, Wellington 15. Fouled out: Bealer.
Junior varsity: Wellington, 63-60.