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 BY JEFF FALK

 LANCASTER – They say familiarity breeds contempt. It’s also been said that familiarity breeds content.

 The Elco girls’ basketball team has played Lancaster Catholic four times this season. There are both advantages and disadvantages to a potential fifth meeting.

 On Tuesday night at Lancaster Catholic High School, the Crusaders defeated the Raiders for the fourth time this season, this time by a score of 45-24, in a semifinal of the District Three Class AAAA postseason tournament. It was an all too familiar story line for the Raiders, as they struggled with turnovers, played from behind the entire way and generally didn’t perform like they are accustomed to.

 Factually, last night’s point differential was the smallest of the four meetings between Elco and Lancaster Catholic this season. The Crusaders had beaten the Raiders by margins of 24, 26 and 24 previously.

 With the loss, fourth-seeded Elco slipped to 21-6 overall and into Thursday’s Class AAAA third-place game at 7 p.m. at third-seeded Kenard-Dale. The Raiders had already been assured a spot in the upcoming state playoffs.

 The win was 27-0 Lancaster Catholic’s 59th straight over two seasons and propelled the reigning PIAA Class AAAA champion into Thursday’s District Three championship game opposite Bishop McDevitt.

 “We bounce back every time from this,” said Elco head coach Ashli Shay. “We’re 21-6 and four of those losses have come to the same team. There’s three teams who have beaten us this year. As far as I know, we don’t have to play them again next week.

 “Does anyone want to see them (the Crusaders) again?,” Shay continued. “It is what it is. At this point of the season, every team is going to be good and battle-tested. We just have to be more prepared.”

  The start to the game was the Raiders’ nightmare realized.

 Plagued by turnovers and experiencing difficulties even getting off shots against Lancaster Catholic’s vaunted full-court pressure defense, Elco went without a point for the contest’s initial 9:34 – a full quarter plus. During that time, Lancaster Catholic created an 11-0 lead that it would never relinquish.

 The Raiders were guilty of nine turnovers in the first quarter alone.

  “For me, ‘No’,” said Shay, when asked if the past meetings with the Crusaders have affected her team’s psyche. “But I think it is like that for them (her players). It is a factor. They’ve (the Crusaders) won something like 59 in-a-row. Once you start turning the ball over it becomes demoralizing and you become frustrated.

 “You hope every time is going to be the charm,” continued Shay. “We thought we had the right idea. It’s difficult when you don’t move, and turn the ball over. In all reality, we spent 15 minutes of practice on something that didn’t work.”

 The Raiders caught a spark early in the second quarter, and it would prove to be one of their few highlights of the evening.

 Elco rattled off six unanswered points to cut Lancaster Catholic’s lead to 11-6, 3:10 into the second period. Freshman Kailey Eckhart scored on a pair of hard ‘takes’ to the bucket, while senior Jordan Rosengrant knocked down a couple of free throws.

 But the Raiders’ prosperity was short-lived. The Crusaders registered the final 12 points of the first half to take a 25-6 advantage to the locker room.

 “I thought we played scared and timid in the first half,” said Shay. “I thought we did well defensively. But offensively, we did not show up.

 “I thought it (the turnovers) were a little bit of both (forced and unforced),” added Shay. “Just them running and jumping, and getting into passing lanes. They forced us to turn the ball over.”

 None of Elco’s three leading scorers – Ryelle Shuey, Amanda Smith or Julia Nelson – registered a point in the first half. For the Crusaders, Peyton Jaquis poured in a game-high 18 points and Kiki Jefferson dropped in 17 points.

 Lancaster Catholic outscored Elco 15-3 from beyond the arc.

 “She definitely played her more this time,” said Shay of assigning Shuey to Jefferson defensively. “We wanted to put some size on her (Jefferson) and bring help. She (Shuey) played tough. She played physical. I thought she did a good job.

“We were looking to attack offensively, and finish,” Shay added. “We were actually out rebounding them at halftime. But offensively, you’ve got to make shots.”

 Elco was unable to mount much of a rally in the second half.

 A driving lay-up by Shuey and another Rosengrant charity toss drew the Raiders to within 28-9 of the lead, 2:33 into the third period. But Lancaster Catholic closed the third stanza with a 35-14 bulge, and it was around that point that Elco’s body language began to tell its own story.

 “I thought our defensive rebounding was pretty darn good,” said Shay. “Our offense let us down. They (the Crusaders) certainly had a lot to do with that. If you hold Lancaster Catholic to 45 points, you’ve got to think you have a chance.

 “If you would’ve told me in late November that we’d be in the district semifinals, I would’ve agreed with you,” Shay continued. “I believe in this team that much.”

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 2018-19 Elco Girls’ Basketball Results

 
 
Date Opponents Outcomes  
12/07
6:00 pm
Susquehanna Township
Elco
at Middletown Tip-Off Tournament
22
46
 
12/08
7:30 pm
Elco
Middletown
at Middletown Tip-Off Tournament
46
55
 
12/11
7:30 pm
Fleetwood
at Elco
24
34
 
12/14
7:30 pm
Cocalico
at Elco
39
57
 
12/17
7:30 pm
Elco
at Manheim Central
49
33
 
12/19
7:30 pm
Solanco
at Elco
39
40
 
12/21
7:30 pm
Elco
at Lampeter-Strasburg
32
39
 
12/27
4:30 pm
Elco
Pine Grove
at Pine Grove Holiday Tournament
47
30
 
12/28
6:00 pm
Elco
Kennett
at Pine Grove Holiday Tournament
43
36
 
1/04
7:00 pm
Octorara
at Elco
12
75
 
1/08
7:30 pm
Elco
at Donegal
63
59
 
1/11
6:00 pm
Elco
at Northern Lebanon
31
19
 
1/12
2:30 pm
Elco
at Lebanon
51
28
 
1/15
7:30 pm
Elco
at York Catholic
51
46
 
1/18
7:30 pm
Lancaster Catholic
at Elco
68
44
 
1/22
7:00 pm
Elco
at Octorara
68
13
 
1/25
7:30 pm
Donegal
at Elco
59
78
 
1/26
6:30 pm
Elco
at Oley Valley
50
27
 
2/01
7:30 pm
Garden Spot
at Elco
38
54
 
2/02
1:00 pm
Elco
at Northern Lebanon
49
26
 
2/05
7:30 pm
Elco
at Lancaster Catholic
31
67
 
2/07
6:00 pm
Elco
Ephrata
at Garden Spot
61
44
 
2/09
7:00 pm
Elco
at Solanco
55
38
 
2/13
7:30 pm
Elco
Cedar Crest
at Lebanon
36
34
 
2/15
7:00 pm
Lancaster Catholic
Elco
at Manheim Township
66
42
 
2/22
7:00 pm
Eastern York
at Elco
42
46
 
2/26
7:00 pm
Elco
at Lancaster Catholic
   
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 PIAA District Three
 Final Class AAAA Power Rankings
 
AAAA School  W  L  T  Rating  TWP  OWP  TWPW  OWPW  TWPL  OWPL
1 Lancaster Catholic 21- 0- 0  0.809768  1.000000  0.577262  23.4  265.1  0.0  194.1
2 Bishop McDevitt 19- 2- 0  0.800883  0.930283  0.642726  21.4  298.5  1.6  165.9
3 Kennard Dale 20- 2- 0  0.751993  0.922131  0.544046  22.5  258.2  1.9  216.4
4 Eastern Lebanon County 17- 4- 0  0.713756  0.834452  0.566239  18.7  260.3  3.7  199.4
5 Eastern York 15- 7- 0  0.681454  0.732906  0.618568  17.2  301.2  6.3  185.7
6 Big Spring 14- 6- 0  0.629746  0.740196  0.494750  15.1  212.1  5.3  216.6
7 Bermudian Springs 15- 7- 0  0.614414  0.679545  0.534809  15.0  248.9  7.1  216.5
8 Susquehanna Township 11- 11- 0  0.603616  0.570455  0.644147  12.6  315.6  9.5  174.4
9 Wyomissing 14- 8- 0  0.587937  0.685990  0.468094  14.2  217.5  6.5  247.2
10 Northern Lebanon 13- 9- 0  0.570943  0.637778  0.489256  14.4  232.3  8.2  242.5
11 Oley Valley 14- 8- 0  0.544753  0.628959  0.441835  13.9  200.4  8.2  253.1
12 West Perry 11- 11- 0  0.511226  0.506637  0.516836  11.5  237.2  11.2  221.7
13 Fleetwood 9- 12- 0  0.511012  0.486420  0.541069  9.9  239.5  10.4  203.1
14 James Buchanan 11- 11- 0  0.490770  0.532895  0.439285  12.2  193.0  10.7  246.4
15 Schuylkill Valley 11- 11- 0  0.490253  0.537209  0.432862  11.6  196.0  10.0  256.8
16 Littlestown 9- 13- 0  0.468523  0.405963  0.544984  8.9  258.1  13.0  215.5
17 Boiling Springs 9- 12- 0  0.468042  0.461358  0.476212  9.9  212.2  11.5  233.4
18 Middletown Area 7- 13- 0  0.453423  0.379227  0.544107  7.9  231.3  12.9  193.8
19 Hamburg Area 8- 14- 0  0.417688  0.386473  0.455840  8.0  212.9  12.7  254.2
20 Octorara Area 0- 21- 0  0.267241  0.000000  0.593869  0.0  249.0  19.9  170.3
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

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