Susquehannock girls pull past New Oxford
Susquehannock kept New Oxford at arm's length all night long before pulling away in the fourth quarter with a 51-34 victory in the second round of the PIAA Class 5A girls' basketball tournament Thursday night at West York.
The victory, Susquehannock's sixth in a row, sends the Warriors to a quarterfinal against District 11 champion Southern Lehigh (27-1), a 77-47 winner over Mastery Charter North on Saturday at a time and place to be announced.
Susquehannock (25-4) established a new school record for wins in a season with the victory.
"This team has really come together since the start of districts," Susky coach Dave Scheiner said. "They are playing some great basketball."
The Warriors' last loss was in the semifinals of the YAIAA tournament, when they lost to New Oxford.
"We did a lot of good things this year," New Oxford coach James Kunkle said. "We made it to the league championship game for the first time ever, made states for the first time since 1987 and won a state playoff game for the first time ever. So the girls have a lot to be proud of."
New Oxford (22-9) played without the full services of senior star Kaelyn Long, who fractured the thumb on her shooting hand in the late stages of Saturday's 58-44 win against Abington Heights. Long was limited to 16 minutes of action in Thursday's game and scored two points on 1-of-4 shooting and grabbed three rebounds.
"I heard about Long's injury a few days ago, but that didn't affect how we prepared for the game in any way," Scheiner said. "We wanted to come out and play our game and play the way that we were capable of."
The Warriors pocketed the first eight points of the contest, but an 8-4 run by the Colonials cut the deficit to 14-11 at the end of the opening frame.
A strong second quarter saw the Warriors lead by as many as 13 and they went to intermission in front, 27-16.
"It was important for us to get off to a good start," Scheiner said. "That put us in a good spot for the rest of the game."
Haley Luckabaugh's hoop at the 4:15 mark of the third quarter trimmed Ox's deficit to 32-25, the closest the Colonials were since early in the second quarter.
But a bucket by Taylor Tannura at the third quarter horn gave Susquehannock a 38-28 lead going to the final stanza.
"It seemed that every time we got something going, they had an answer," Kunkle said.
Case in point: Presley Berryhill scored to start the fourth quarter for the Colonials, but the Warriors responded with a 7-0 run to put the game out of reach.
"It felt like every possession where we needed a score or a stop to stay in control, that we got it," Scheiner said. "That allowed us to get the game to the point where they had to start fouling us."
Jaden Walker and Jayla Galbreath paced Susky with 13 points apiece, while Tannura chipped in with 10.
Haley Still buried a quintet of 3-pointers to lead Ox with a game-high 15 points.