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 IMG_7347BY JEFF FALK

HERSHEY – In many ways, this version honored the tradition of the Cedar Crest boys’ basketball program by becoming the best team it could be. But on the back end – in places that are hardest to reach – there was just a little growth left untapped, an ounce of promise not realized, a bit of potential left unexplored.

On Tuesday night at Hershey High School, the Falcons’ once promising season met with an unfulfilled conclusion, as they fell 62-46 to Dallastown in a District Three Class AAAAAA consolation semifinal/elimination game. After undermanned Cedar Crest performed well early, the Wildcats slowly gained control of the outcome in the middle portions of the contest, before pulling away late.

Fourth-seeded Cedar Crest, which was without the services of injured starters Blake Thomson and Jaiden Melendez, ended its year at 18-7. But what was disheartening was how it concluded, with three straight playoff losses.

IMG_7311At one point this season, the Falcons boasted a 16-3 record.

With the win, Dallastown, the ninth seed, moved to 15-10 and into the PIAA Class AAAAAA postseason.

“To me, there’s always going to be that ‘What if?’ with this group, because of the injuries,” said Cedar Crest head coach Tom Smith. “The story’s over. I’m not sure it was ever written.

“I think we’re as good as any team in the district when we’re at full strength,” Smith continued. “We lost the last two games, and we didn’t give anything to anyone.”

With some players performing in unfamiliar roles and Cedar Crest playing an active zone defense, the Falcons got off to a good start.

IMG_7434Cedar Crest led 10-4, 2:15 in, thanks to five points from Logan Horn, a Cole Laney trey and a lay-in by Brody Dunlop. Three minutes later, another three-pointer from Laney gave the Falcons a 15-11 edge.

“We tried to put our team in the best position to win,” said Smith. “My guys are warriors. They fight. They accept any role you give them. I’m proud of every single one of them. They competed and fought.”

Cedar Crest was still up, 19-17, midway through the second stanza, on the strength of a Dunlop three-pointer. But the Wildcats tallied the next seven points, and carried a 30-27 margin to the intermission.

The Falcons would never lead again.

“I thought we played well early,” said Smith. “We played zone about half the game. I felt comfortable with our zone. I thought it made them take some shots they didn’t want. We played it (zone) one other time this year.”

Laney registered a team-high 14 points, and he was supported offensively by Jason Eberhart, who recorded 12. The Wildcats outscored the Falcons 38-20 on two-point field goals.

“It was a little bit of both (Dallastown playing well ,and his side not so much),” said Smith. “They (the Wildcats) made some shots. I don’t think we played awful. We turned the ball over too many times. Dallstown is a good basketball team.”

The outcome began to get away from the Falcons in the third period.

IMG_7404The Wildcats tallied the first five points of the second half to extend their lead to 35-27. Then Dallastown scored the final seven points of the third quarter to push its advantage to 50-35.

“Early in the second half, they made some shots and we couldn’t answer,” said Smith. “At that point, they stretched it to 15, and they made their foul shots. But we were right there.”

The Falcons opened the final period with another Laney triple and four consecutive free throws – courtesy of a technical foul on Dallastown – from Horn, to close to within 50-42. But Cedar Crest scored only one point over the game’s final 4:33.

“It’s out of our hands,” said Smith of the injuries to Thomson and Melendez. “We gave it our best shot. I feel bad that Blake’s and Jaiden’s careers had to end this way. This is an opportunity they worked so hard for, and they didn’t get a chance to take advantage of it.”

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IMG_7417To purchase images in this article email jkfalk2005@yahoo.com, or to view more go to https://lebanonsportsbuzz.com/photo-gallery/.

 

 

 

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2017-18 Cedar Crest Boys’ Basketball Results

Date Opponents Results
12/08
7:45 pm
Cedar Crest
Elco
at Lebanon
68
44
12/09
7:45 pm
Cedar Crest
at Lebanon
49
46
12/11
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Manheim Central
57
39
12/14
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at McCaskey
61
46
12/15
TBD
Cedar Crest
York
at Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia
48
55
12/18
7:30 pm
Warwick
at Cedar Crest
40
52
12/20
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Conestoga Valley
73
39
12/22
7:30 pm
Manheim Township
at Cedar Crest
77
71
12/28
7:30 pm
Camp Hill
at Cedar Crest
49
70
12/29
7:30 pm
Lebanon
at Cedar Crest
38
50
1/05
7:30 pm
Hempfield
at Cedar Crest
39
41
1/06
7:00 pm
Lower Dauphin
Cedar Crest
at Lebanon Valley College
68
73
1/09
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Penn Manor
66
35
1/12
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Lebanon
64
62
1/18
7:30 pm
McCaskey
at Cedar Crest
55
54
1/19
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Warwick
54
50
1/20
3:00 pm
Cedar Crest
Williamsport
at Reading
59
55
1/23
7:30 pm
Conestoga Valley
at Cedar Crest
41
81
1/26
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Manheim Township
76
73
1/30
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Hempfield
55
72
2/02
7:30 pm
Penn Manor
at Cedar Crest
51
62
2/06
7:30 pm
Lebanon
at Cedar Crest
53
61
2/12
7:00 pm
Ephrata
Cedar Crest
at Warwick
84
69
2/23
7:00 pm
Manheim Township
at Cedar Crest
67
59
2/27
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
Dallastown
at Hershey High School
IMG_7324
IMG_7386
IMG_7392
IMG_7394
 PIAA District Three
 Class AAAAAA Consolation Semifinal
 (at Hershey High School)

Dallastown 62, Cedar Crest 46

Dallastown (62)

Caldwell 5 3-5 15; Barton 10 2-2 23; Writer 0 0-0 0; Atwood 1 2-2 4; McGlynn 1 0-0 3; Thomas 0 0-0 0; Teyral 0 0-2 0; Albert 2 2-2 7; Richardson 1 0-0 2; Green 0 0-0 0; Ward 4 0-0 8. Three-point goals: Caldwell 2, Barton, McGlynn, Albert. Totals: 24 9-15 62.

IMG_7397Cedar Crest (46)

Dorrill 0 0-0 0; Miller 2 0-0 4; Horn 1 6-8 9; Apple 0 0-0 0; Loehr 0 0-0 0; Dunlop 2 1-2 6; Showers0 0-0 0; Laney 4 0-0 14; Eberhart 6 0-0 12; Jaquan Andino 0 0-0 0. Three-point goals: Laney 4, Horn, Dunlop. Totals: 16 8-13 46.

Dallastown 13 17 20 12 – 62

Cedar Crest 15 12 8 11 – 46

 

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