Tough first-round draws for Eastern, William Penn
Last week was a historic one for YAIAA basketball. Four local teams took home District 3 titles, while three others settled for silver medals. Never before has the league had such a strong showing on the district level. But we have to turn the page sometime. And with the start of the state playoffs less than a week away, the picture gets a tad less rosy for a few of the York-Adams teams still alive. Start on the boys' side with William Penn and Eastern York, two district finalists who will be met by rather atypical first-round tests. We talked a bit already about Eastern's matchup. The Golden Knights will play Archbishop Carroll, rated the No. 2 Class AAA team in the state by a most recent Patriot-News poll, at 6 p.m. Friday at Hempfield High School. The two teams played on Jan. 23, with Carroll winning, 57-46. As for the Bearcats, who celebrated their first district title since 1995 on Saturday, they will likely get a contest with District 1 power Penn Wood. The Patriots were state runners-up last year, and beat William Penn in the 2009 state championship game. Why such a testy first-round matchup for the district champion? Penn Wood has spent most of the season ranked among the state's top 10 teams, but settled for the ninth and final qualifying spot in the ultra-tough District 1 tournament. Penn Wood will take part in a play-in game against Wyoming Valley West on Tuesday. The Patriots will be solid favorites in that game. Then again, William Penn played some of its best basketball during the District 3 tournament, culminating with that final victory against Red Land. And the Bearcats will have the homecourt advantage Saturday, with the game being played at nearby Dallastown High School. Tipoff is set for 7:30 p.m. That game, assuming Penn Wood takes care of business, will be one not to miss. Speaking of tough draws, the Dallastown boys also got one. They'll be playing Chester, the top seed from District 1, Saturday at 6 p.m. at Norristown High School. The Clippers have been ranked the top AAAA team in the state for almost the entire season. For a full list of matchups for the 11 YAIAA boys' and girls' teams left in the state basketball playoffs, head here.