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IMG_4665BY JEFF FALK

LEBANON – The Lebanon girls’ basketball team was coming off a 2013-14 campaign in which it graduated one of its largest and most influential classes in its history. To replace their graduated seniors, the Cedars turned to a bevy of inexperienced freshmen and sophomores.

So if Lebanon High was able to win back-to-back Lancaster-Lebanon League Section Two championships under those circumstances, it would certainly be a tribute to its program and two emotional bridges who go by the names of Alicia Haitos and Brittany Ulrich.

On Tuesday night at home, the Cedars moved one step closer to that improbable title with a 49-32 drubbing of Solanco. Following a hot start, the Cedars experienced a bit of a lull during the second period, before really picking up the pace during a decisive third quarter which they won 17-8.

IMG_4694Lebanon, now 14-5 overall and 11-3 in the circuit, needs to win one of its two remaining league games to forge at least a tie for its second straight Section Two crown. The Cedars, who have already secured a berth in the L-L playoffs, currently sit 13th in the latest District Three Class AAAA power rankings.

The loss dropped Solanco to 4-16 on the year and 3-11 in the section.

“That’s a goal. That’s our number-one goal,” said Lebanon head coach Ben Brewer. “To win the section and repeat. We knew it was going to be competitive. Sports go through cycles. To lose a class of kids like we did last year and replace them with freshmen, that means a lot. I’ve just got to keep them focused.

“But there’s a common denominator there,” continued Brewer. “Alicia Haitos has been my captain for three years, and the starting point guard (Ulrich) has been the same for the past four years. She’s (Ulrich) approaching a thousand points, and Alicia Haitos has played the best basketball of her career over the last few games. There’s some big boys in District Three who don’t want to play us.”

IMG_4601Lebanon really found its stride in the third quarter. Nursing a two-point edge, the Cedars held the Mules to a single bucket over a 6:36 period, on their way to opening a 42-27 bulge, on a put back from freshman Alexis Hill.

Hill counted six points in the 17-2 spurt, while fellow ninth-grader Jasmine Turner contributed five points, Ulrich accounted for four and Haitos threw in an inside move.

Lebanon extended its advantage to 20 points by outscoring Solanco 5-0 over the first 3:32 of the final period, as Turner tallied three more points and freshman Jayden Shellehamer canned a couple of charity tosses.

IMG_4677“The third quarter was key,” said Brewer. “We got some steals and some turnovers, and finished on the other end. We were able to transition very well, and finish around the basket.

“I thought we played better in the second half, and it started on the defensive end,” Brewer continued. “We got some steals, and we converted. And I thought in the second half we defended better.”

The only deficit that the Cedars faced all night came at 18-17, near the end of the second quarter. But Lebanon High closed the first half on an 8-1 run, thanks to drive by Ulrich and a pair of clutch treys from Haitos – the second of which beat the second-period buzzer – to take a 25-19 advantage to the break.

“It was a great team win,” said Brewer. “At this time of the season, you’ve got to put together pretty wins and you’ve got to put together ugly wins. But we got contributions from a lot of different girls. Defensively, I was disappointed at halftime. We gave them (the Mules) 23 points in the first half. We had a lot of missed assignments and we gave up a lot of offensive rebounds.”

IMG_4748Haitos registered a game-high 13 points, and Ulrich pumped in eight, while playing her usual steady all-around floor game. Turner stepped up with 11 Cedar points, while Hill came on in the third quarter after battling foul difficulties through most of the first half.

The Cedars outscored the Mules 12-3 from beyond the arc.

“I was scared about tonight,” said Brewer. “We came off an emotional win on Thursday at Ephrata. People were saying, ‘You can win the last three games and win the section championship’. But that’s not how it works. You’ve got to take care of business.

“But I think what was also important was the way the game played out,” added Brewer. “We won with a total of 14 points from our two leading scorers (Ulrich and Hill). I told Brittany after the game, ‘You played awesome. You handled the ball. You contributed. You were unselfish’. But she’s a competitor. She didn’t score a lot, so she didn’t think she played well.”

IMG_4732With the Cedars’ full court pressure creating turnovers, Lebanon scored the first seven points out of the gate, on a Shellehamer three-pointer, a Haitos jumper and an Ulrich drive. The Cedars also tallied the last four points of the opening session, courtesy of an inside maneuver by Haitos and a jump shot from Shellehamer, to assume a 14-6 lead.

But Solanco outscored Lebanon 12-3 over the first six minutes of the second stanza.

“We’re growing up a little bit,” said Brewer. “But any time you start three freshmen, you’re young. I’m seeing less and less freshmen turnovers and less freshmen mental mistakes. They’re learning to play together.

“Things are looking up,” Brewer added. “To win a game like that going away, I can take some confidence from that. You’re not going to play the way you want every game.”

 

 IMG_4708Solanco (32)

PLAYER FGM FTM FTA 3PM PTS_TOT FT%
Kaitlyn Borcky 0 0 0 0 0
Paige Borcky 0 0 0 0 0
Nikki Boultinghouse 3 0 0 1 7 0
Jen Eberly 1 0 0 2 0
Brittany Rhodes 0 0 0 0 0
Cayla Robinson 1 4 6 6 0.667
Taylor Stitz 4 0 0 8 0
Rachel Trout 2 1 2 5 0.5
Megan Yannutz 2 0 0 4 0

Lebanon (49)

PLAYER FGM FTM FTA 3PM PTS_TOT FT%
Molly Foster 0 0 0 0 0
Alicia Haitos 5 1 3 2 13 0.333
Alexis Hill 3 0 0 6 0
Alicia Houser 0 0 0 0 0
Ary’Anna Ortolazo 2 0 0 4 0
Jayden Shellehamer 2 2 2 1 7 1
Jasmine Turner 4 2 3 1 11 0.667
Brittany Ulrich 4 0 0 8 0

IMG_4647

  • Team 1 2 3 4 Final
    Solanco
    6 13 8 5 32
    Lebanon
    14 11 17 7 49
  Lancaster-Lebanon League
    Section Two Standings
TEAM LEAGUE OVERALL
Lebanon 11-3 14-5
Ephrata 10-4 13-6
Elizabethtown 6-8 7-13
Conestoga Valley 5-9 7-13
Solanco 3-11 4-16
Garden Spot 0-14 0-19

IMG_4645Lebanon High 2014-15 Results

DATE OPPONENT TIME RESULT
12/05
@Muhlenberg
6:00 PM W 46-43
12/06
@Boyertown
7:30 PM L 28-59
12/10
@Governor Mifflin
7:30 PM L 28-31
12/12 *
Manheim Twp.
6:00 PM W 56-44
12/15 *
Penn Manor
7:30 PM W 40-30
12/17 *
@Warwick
7:30 PM W 45-26
12/19 *
@Conestoga Valley
7:30 PM W 50-35
12/23 *
Ephrata
7:30 PM L 44-46
12/27
Lebanon Catholic
7:30 PM W 53-45
12/29
Manheim Twp.
7:30 PM W 51-40
01/02 *
@Solanco
7:30 PM W 60-30
01/06 *
@Elizabethtown
7:30 PM W 55-37
01/09 *
Garden Spot
7:30 PM W 55-27
01/12 *
Hempfield
7:30 PM L 36-53
01/14 *
@McCaskey
7:30 PM W 55-50
01/16 *
@Cedar Crest
6:00 PM L 31-41
01/20 *
Conestoga Valley
7:30 PM W 49-31
01/22 *
@Ephrata
7:30 PM W 36-33
01/27 *
Solanco
7:30 PM W 49-32

IMG_4678District Three

 Class AAAA Power Rankings

AAAA School W L T Rating

1 Palmyra Area 17 1 0 .839121

2 Central Dauphin East 16 0 0 .802067

3 Cumberland Valley 15 1 0 .791836

4 Cedar Crest 14 3 0 .778794

5 Red Lion Area 13 4 0 .776119

6 Mechanicsburg Area 16 2 0 .767346

IMG_47057 Hempfield 13 5 0 .751730

8 Red Land 14 4 0 .749934

9 Dallastown Area 13 5 0 .736795

10 Central York 14 4 0 .732175

11 Governor Mifflin 12 5 0 .726379

12 New Oxford 13 4 0 .724707

13 Lebanon 13 5 0 .715970

14 J P McCaskey 12 6 0 .710577

15 Cocalico 14 5 0 .700293

16 Cedar Cliff 11 7 0 .695947

IMG_472617 Ephrata Area 12 6 0 .691076

18 Harrisburg 9 6 0 .689716

19 Exeter Township 10 7 0 .664147

20 Daniel Boone 10 8 0 .662394

21 Lower Dauphin 9 8 0 .636873

22 Manheim Township 9 10 0 .633183

23 Muhlenberg 9 9 0 .629619

24 Hershey 8 9 0 .614106

25 York Country Day School 12 4 0 .609544

26 Central Dauphin 5 10 0 .579037

27 Wilson Senior 5 11 0 .553546

IMG_459228 South Western 6 9 0 .552031

29 Penn Manor 7 12 0 .551952

30 Elizabethtown Area 7 12 0 .530304

31 Warwick 5 13 0 .503431

32 William Penn 5 14 0 .484805

33 Conestoga Valley 6 13 0 .483093

34 Shippensburg Area 4 11 0 .442260

35 Reading 3 15 0 .441410

36 Solanco 4 15 0 .423804

37 Chambersburg Area 2 14 0 .413226

IMG_461838 Spring Grove Area 2 15 0 .390811

39 Waynesboro Area 3 12 0 .372123

40 Carlisle 0 17 0 .277432

41 Garden Spot 0 18 0 .272632

 

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