The Clare Pioneers played at Jack Pine Conference leading Meridian on Friday, Feb. 1, falling to the Mustangs 58-32.
The Mustangs, who improved to 9-1 in league play with the win, led 15-12 after the first quarter and took control of the game with a 23-7 scoring edge in the second to lead 38-19 at the half.
“Our second quarter defense was poor,” Clare head coach Rob Wise said. “We were giving up the lane and not helping.”
The Mustangs continued to control the game with a 15-5 edge in the third, paving way to a 53-24 lead entering the fourth. Clare outscored Meridian 8-5 to account for the final.
“We played hard, we were aggressive, we just allowed too many runs,” Wise said. “Meridian would go on an 8-0 run in the blink of an eye.”
Scott Smith led Clare with 14 points and Spencer Harrell had six points and nine rebounds.
Clare (7-8 overall, 5-6 JPC) played at Coleman on Wednesday, host Roscommon tonight (Friday) and resume play Feb. 15 at Gladwin.