Things were looking up for the Central York boys' basketball team as the third quarter came to a close on Saturday night at West York High School.
The Panthers were in the midst of an 8-0 run against Central Bucks West in their PIAA Class AAAA first round game to pull within four points of the lead with a quarter to play.
But the Panthers run would come to an abrupt end thanks to Central Bucks West senior Cal Reichwein who stroked three straight 3-pointers to start the fourth quarter.
The strong outside shooting from the Bucks was present all game as the sixth seed from District 1 held off the Panthers, 60-55.
"They are a fantastic shooting team," Panthers head coach Kevin Schieler said. "We knew that coming in and I think we could have contested shots a lot better in the first half."
Central York head coach Kevin Schieler talks about his departing senior class after Saturday's season-ending loss. Brandon Stoneburg
The Bucks (24-6), who advance to the second round on Wednesday, shot 11-of-16 from beyond the arc, including 4-of-6 in the first quarter and a perfect 3-of-3 in the fourth.
Central York, the second seed from District 3, trimmed a 12-point Bucks lead down to just four points and trailed 37-33 after three quarters.
"We did a better job on the defensive end," Schieler said. "They didn't get as many open looks and I think we became more aggressive on the offensive end."
But Reichwein's three straight 3's in the first 1:45 of the fourth quarter gave the visitors a 13-point lead. The Panthers would again fight back, getting as close as 53-50 with 1:36 to play on Jared Wagner's 3-pointer.
Wagner, the team's emotional leader, led the Panthers with 20 points in his final game.
"Jared's energy level and competitiveness I just can't stop talking about," Schieler said. "It's so unique."
Wagner, who will continue his career at York College, scored 10 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter.
"I just try to play hard all the time," Wagner said. "I saw a bunch of people leaving and I told our guys, 'People are giving up on us, but I'm not giving up on us.' This team doesn't quit."
Schieler, who guided the Panthers to a YAIAA Division I championship behind a perfect 12-0 league record, has fond memories of this group.
"It's all the little things that happen after practice. I had to kick these guys out of the gym," Schieler said.
On Saturday, four of the five Bucks starters finished in double figures and each one of them knocked down at least one 3-pointer.
Luke Irons led Central Bucks West with 18 points. Bill Power added 14 points, including two 3's. Connor Lynch scored 12 points on four 3-pointers and Reichwein notched 13, including 10 in the fourth quarter.
Nathan Markey was the Central York 3-point catalyst, scoring 16 points, 15 of which came via the 3.
Central Bucks West 60, Central York 55
Central Bucks West (60)
Bill Power 5 2-2 14, Luke Irons 6 5-6 18, Connoe Lynch 4 0-0 12, Cal Reichwein 4 1-2 13, Hohenleitner 0 2-2 2, J. Reichwein 0 1-2 1.
19 11-14. Totals - 60.
Central York (55)
Batts 2 2-2 6, G. Markey 0 0-0 0, Ray 0 0-0 0, Edmonds 0 2-2 2, ONeil 2 0-0 4, Nathan Markey 5 1-2 16, Jared Wagner 8 2-6 20, Sabestanovich 3 1-2 7, Czulada 0 0-0 0.
20 8-14. Totals - 55.
Central Bucks West _ 20 _ 12 _ 5 _ 23 _ — _ 60
Central York _ 15 _ 8 _ 10 _ 22 _ — _ 55
3-point goals: CBW 11, (Lynch 4, C. Reichwein 4, Power 2, Irons); CY 7, (Markey 5, Wagner 2).