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LEBANON - While Lancaster Catholic unquestionably controls Section Four, the Beavers of Lebanon Catholic are looking to make a run toward the top of the Lancaster-Lebanon League.

Lebanon Catholic defeated Annville-Cleona handily Friday night, topping the Little Dutchmen 46-27. The Beavers were propelled by a strong first quarter, when they limited the road team to just three points.

“I was pleased with our defense,” Lebanon Catholic coach Patti Hower said. “Annville doesn’t have a real strong inside game, so we can spread it out. We knew they took a lot of outside shots. First we got in a little bit of foul trouble, which forced us to switch to zone. But I was pretty happy with our zone defense.”

Hower’s club pulled to 2-2 in conference play (3-2 overall) and only Lancaster Catholic stands in front of them, entering the night with a 3-0 section record.

Celine Mars led the way for the Beavers, posting 14 points. Mars positioned herself constantly around the hoop, resulting several easy layups and shots around the basket. Mars and Neesha Pierre (10 points) have provided Lebanon Catholic with a steady and reliable front court that they can use against teams who lack size around the basket.

“She has a quick first step on the low block,” Hower said of Mars. “She did a nice job there. She battles in there and she looks to do something with (the ball). I thought she played extremely well and had a lot of boards.”

Sophomore point guard Mariah Sholly continued to shine for the Beavers, turning in eight points along with a plethora of assists and steals as she continues to develop. Sholly made an impact at the very onset of the game, blocking a shot on defense and returning the favor on a fast break and feeding Pierre to give Lebanon Catholic the first basket. She continued strong late into the fourth quarter, contributing five points in the span of one minute to close out the win.

“She takes charge,” Hower said of Sholly. "She takes it when she should, she pulls it out when she should. She’s an excellent point guard, she sees the court and she’s very unselfish.”

Annville-Cleona (1-5, 0-4 L-L) struggled all night long, simply because it couldn’t hit enough shots. Meridith Bachman starred for the Little Dutchmen, contributing 11 points. Michaela Singer added eight points, including two treys.

“I don’t think we shot the ball very well, either,” said Hower. “We missed a lot of foul shots (10-for-23), and we kind of let them hang around and then they hit some big shots. When you have that Annville-Lebanon Catholic rivalry, everyone is going to be a little tight. Neither time shot the ball very well.”

Lebanon Catholic 46, Annville-Cleona 27 

Annville-Cleona (27)

Morgan Zimmerman 0 2-2 2, Hannah Fischer 1 1-2 3, Michaela Singer 3 0-0 8, Meridith Bachman 5 1-1 11, Addison Hayes 0 0-0 0, Chloe Inman 0 0-0 0, Steph Inman 1 1-1 3. Totals — 10 5-7 27.

Lebanon Catholic (46)

Mariah Sholly 2 4-5 8, Hannah Callihan 2 0-0 5, Neesha Pierre 3 4-6 10, Alison Warren 1 2-2 5, Jayden Shellehamer 2 0-8 4, Celine Mars 7 0-2 14. Totals — 17 10-23 46.

Annville-Cleona_ 3 _ 8 _ 10 _ 6 _ — _ 27

Leb. Catholic _ 10 _ 8 _ 11 _ 17 _ — _ 46

3-point goals — A-C 2 (Singer 2); LC 2 (Callihan, Warren).

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