LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

The Central York girls struggled to find their shooting touch throughout the District 3 Class 6A quarterfinals against Cedar Cliff.

But the first two baskets of the fourth quarter made all the difference in the world for the No. 4-seeded Panthers on Thursday night.

Trailing by four points, Katie Fabbri knocked down a 3-pointer. Moments later, Allison Wagner hit a jumper to extend the lead to nine.

Central then held on down the stretch, anchored by their stout defense and free throw shooting to earn the 43-35 victory and a trip to the Giant Center on Monday.

The reward? That would be top-seeded Cumberland Valley who barely survived a huge upset in double overtime.

“I’m proud of my kids defensively for being tough, gritty, battling in a night where (our offense) just never found rhythm,” said Panthers' head coach Scott Wisner.

Wisner couldn’t be more spot-on about his team’s defensive performance. From the get-go, Central York applied pressure with promising results.

The Panthers went on an 8-0 run after the Colts scored the first basket of the contest.

The home team’s lead grew to nine at the half, but the No. 5 seed battled back in the third – scoring the quarter’s final five points.

Nikson Valencik and Fabbri led Central York with 12 points each. The duo scored all seven of their team’s points eight minutes out of the break.

The Panthers sealed things by scoring eight points on free throws in the waning moments.

“At halftime our coach said, ‘If you think you’re tired, you’re playing for states so really dig deep,’” Emma Saxton said. “That really got to us and we left everything we had on the court.”

Now, No. 1 Cumberland Valley awaits.

“Our goal was to get to the Giant Center, qualify for States and we did that,” Wisner said. “We think we can compete against anybody when we play to our capability.”

LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE
Read or Share this story: http://gtpa.co/2mdA5sf