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 IMG_7224BY JEFF FALK

NEFFSVILLE – A bitter loss to McCaskey in a playoff for the Section One crown.

A sour taste in its mouth watching Manheim Township cut down nets at last year’s L-L championship game.

The tart thought of not having a title to go with its spectacular season.

All lemons.

IMG_7213Yesterday, the Cedar Crest girls’ basketball squeezed as much motivation as it could out of those unfortunate events, and made itself some lemonade.

On Saturday afternoon at Manheim Township High School, the Falcons captured an elusive Lancaster-Lebanon League championship with a 58-49 triumph over McCaskey’s Red Tornado. After surviving two first-half technical fouls and a 10-0 total foul discrepancy in the middle of the second quarter, Cedar Crest just took it to the Red Tornado over the final 20 minutes of action, leaving little doubt as to whom was the better team.

It was the seventh Lancaster-Lebanon League championship, but first since 2010, for the Falcons, who dropped a 58-47 decision to McCaskey for the Section One title a week ago, and also came on the heels of Cedar Crest winning the L-L boys’ championship at Manheim Township a night earlier. Now 21-4 overall, the Falcons will be seeded fourth when they open play in the District Three Class AAAA playoffs on Tuesday at 7 p.m. on their home floor.

The loss dropped McCaskey to 19-7 overall. The Falcons and Red Tornado have now split four overall meeting this season.

IMG_7216“I’ll trade a section championship for this any day,” said Cedar Crest head coach Jim Donmoyer. “This is the biggest thing these kids have won in two years. I didn’t want them to come away empty handed. They’ve got a Lancaster-Lebanon championship. They’ve got a trophy. They’ve got nets. The effort was awesome.

“I used it (last year’s L-L title tilt as motivation) before we came out of the locker room,” Donmoyer continued. “I understand what it feels like to lose this game. I made them (his players) watch Manheim Township cut down the nets last year. It’s what it’s about. It’s redemption.”

“I’m very excited, especially after coming here last year,” said Cedar Crest senior guard Nikki Wagner. “It was the worst feeling in the world, watching Manheim Township cutting down the nets. This is what we play for.

IMG_7176“The last game against them (the Red Tornado), we weren’t in it,” continued N. Wagner. “We were there, but we weren’t. We wanted to move and get some outside shots. When you get some scoring, you get so much confidence.”

Overcoming one technical foul is one thing, but overcoming two in the same half is quite another. But instead of hanging their heads about them, the Falcons used it as further motivation.

Cedar Crest outscored the Red Tornado 10-1 over the final 3:23 of the first half to turn a 27-22 deficit into a 32-28 locker room advantage. With the Falcons’ man-to-man defense harassing McCaskey all over the floor, Cedar Crest got five points from emerging sophomore Ariel Jones, a trey from Emmi Wagner and a stick back from Alyssa Austin.

“I think at some point, someone came down and made a basket and steadied us,” said Donmoyer of the key moment of the contest. “We were elated to be up four at halftime, after what we went through.

IMG_7292“We played good,” added Donmoyer. “We played hard. We’re a good team and the other team is a good team. You play hard. The last time we played them, we didn’t. But we never quit. We kept on playing.”

“In the first half it felt like eight versus five,” said N. Wagner. “I felt the refs were against us. But yeah, it definitely motivated us. In the locker room, coach said that we have to overcome it and play together.”

Cedar Crest also closed the third period strong, with an 8-2 spurt to be exact. Makaley Ruhl stuck a jumper off the bench, Austin turned an offensive rebound into a deuce, N. Wagner scored off an inbound play and Maddie Rakow drained a pair of charity tosses with one second left on the third-period clock to push the Falcons’ advantage to 42-33.

IMG_7212Two more Rakow charity tosses with 2:44 to go made it a 55-39 Falcon lead, and capped a 13-4 CC spree. Jones tallied four more points in the run, while E. Wagner contributed another trey, N. Wagner scored on a drive and Rakow stuck back a pair.

McCaskey did respond with eight unanswered points to get to within 55-47, but with just 47 ticks remaining. But free throws from N. Wagner and Jones short-circuited the Red Tornado.

“We’re just pleased with the effort of the girls,” said Donmoyer. “We were here last year. We know how it feels to lose. We told the girls, ‘Let’s feel the other emotion’.”

“We did really well,” said N. Wagner. “We threw away a few passes, but our shots were falling, and our ‘bigs’ were finding things inside. The only thing bad about it was the technicals.”

IMG_7276Cedar Crest shot the ball extremely well from distance and outscored the Red Tornado 21-3 from three-point land. The Falcons’ balanced attack included 15 points apiece by N. Wagner and Jones, and ten from Rakow.

“It’s your last time to actually win it,” said N. Wagner, a senior, of the Lancaster-Lebanon League championship. “That’s how I came into the game. Last year was the motivation to win it. It was horrible.”

“They (the Red Tornado) could’ve buried us in the second period and they didn’t,” said Donmoyer. “The kids fought back, fought back, and here we are. We had to settle down.

“With the technicals, they shot eight foul shots and got the ball twice,” added Donmoyer. “What are you going to do?”

IMG_7081McCaskey parlayed the Falcons’ first technical foul into a five-point possession and a 21-16 first-quarter lead. Cedar Crest’s second technical foul helped produce the Red Tornado’s 25-20 advantage, 2:39 into the second stanza.

Earlier, three-pointers from N. Wagner had given the Falcons leads of 8-7 and 13-11.

“When Alyssa got her’s, number 33 walked past her and Alyssa gave her a little nudge,” said N. Wagner of the technicals. “The ref said Makaley gave her a big mouth, but Makaley said she didn’t swear.”

IMG_7140“I want to go to the district championship game. That’s the goal,” said Donmoyer of the next tournament. “We have a game at home. But we haven’t won a district game with this group yet. We still have half of our goals in front of us. We’re still playing basketball.

“We’ve got to win one game,” continued Donmoyer. “If we do, we’re guaranteed two more. Out of 16 teams from our district, they take seven (to states). I’ll take those odds.”

McCaskey (49)

PLAYER FGM FTM FTA 3PM PTS_TOT FT%
Alize Cherry 0 1 2 1 0.5
Sienne Kemmerer 0 0 0 0 0
Ayanda McGill-Jefferson 3 1 2 7 0.5
Ahnera Parker 4 6 8 14 0.75
Briana Perry 1 4 6 6 0.667
Jaileen Short 3 4 4 1 11 1
Brooklyn Smith-Jones 0 1 2 1 0.5
Paris Todd 4 0 0 8 0

IMG_7181Cedar Crest (58)

PLAYER FGM FTM FTA 3PM PTS_TOT FT%
Alyssa Austin 3 2 2 8 1
Ariel Jones 5 3 6 2 15 0.5
Rachel Miller 0 0 0 0 0
Madison Rakow 2 4 4 8 1
Makaley Ruhl 3 0 0 6 0
Emmi Wagner 2 0 0 2 6 0
Nikki Wagner 5 2 4 3 15 0.5

 

  • Team 1 2 3 4 Final
    McCaskey
    21 7 5 16 49
    Cedar Crest
    16 16 10 16 58

 IMG_7183Cedar Crest 2014-15 Results

DATE OPPONENT TIME RESULT
12/05
Boyertown
7:30 PM L 38-51
12/06
@Muhlenberg
6:00 PM W 55-42
12/12 *
Solanco
7:30 PM W 67-37
12/15 *
@Ephrata
7:30 PM W 55-41
12/17 *
Conestoga Valley
7:30 PM W 45-19
12/19 *
@McCaskey
7:30 PM L 48-49
12/23 *
Hempfield
7:30 PM L 42-45
12/26 #
@Spring Grove
6:00 PM W 67-23
12/27 #
@Conrad Weiser
7:30 PM W 61-57
01/02 *
Manheim Twp.
7:30 PM W 55-32
01/06 *
@Warwick
7:30 PM W 71-50
01/09 *
Penn Manor
7:30 PM W 62-31
01/12 *
@Garden Spot
7:30 PM W 91-36
01/14 *
Elizabethtown
7:30 PM W 61-29
01/16 *
Lebanon
6:00 PM W 41-31
01/20 *
McCaskey
7:30 PM W 51-34
01/22 *
@Hempfield
7:30 PM W 43-28
01/27 *
@Manheim Twp.
7:30 PM W 51-28
01/28
Palmyra
7:30 PM W 65-61
01/30 *
Warwick
7:30 PM W 56-39
02/03 *
@Penn Manor
7:30 PM W 56-25
02/05 *
@McCaskey
6:00 PM L 47-58
02/10 #
@Lancaster Catholic
7:00 PM W 68-62
02/12 #
Cocalico
7:00 PM W 47-33
02/14 * #
McCaskey
1:00 PM W 58-49

IMG_7248Lancaster-Lebanon League

 Final Section One Standings

TEAM LEAGUE OVERALL
McCaskey 14-2 19-7
Cedar Crest 14-2 21-4
Hempfield 12-4 15-7
Manheim Twp. 8-8 10-12
Penn Manor 4-12 7-15
Warwick 3-13 6-16

  District Three

 Class AAAA Power Rankings

AAAA School W L T Rating

1 Palmyra Area 20- 2- 0 0.823729

IMG_72192 Cumberland Valley 20- 1- 0 0.806947

3 Central Dauphin East 20- 1- 0 0.79295

4 Cedar Crest 18- 3- 0 0.789167

5 Mechanicsburg Area 20- 2- 0 0.763141

6 Dallastown Area 17- 5- 0 0.757877

7 Red Lion Area 15- 6- 0 0.756518

8 Central York 18- 4- 0 0.747692

9 Hempfield 15- 7- 0 0.744313

10 Lebanon 17- 5- 0 0.742630

IMG_728111 Red Land 17- 5- 0 0.740391

12 J P McCaskey 16- 6- 0 0.735721

13 Governor Mifflin 16- 6- 0 0.731887

14 Ephrata Area 16- 6- 0 0.719940

15 New Oxford 16- 6- 0 0.717198

16 Cocalico 16- 6- 0 0.692722

17 Cedar Cliff 13- 9- 0 0.686195

18 Harrisburg 12- 9- 0 0.677720

19 Daniel Boone 13- 9- 0 0.677025

20 Exeter Township 12- 9- 0 0.658345

IMG_720621 Central Dauphin 9- 11- 0 0.641318

22 Manheim Township 10- 12- 0 0.629668

23 Hershey 11- 11- 0 0.621600

24 Muhlenberg 10- 12- 0 0.611765

25 Lower Dauphin 10- 11- 0 0.608203

26 York Country Day School 16- 5- 0 0.599189

27 South Western 8- 13- 0 0.549923

28 Wilson Senior 6- 15- 0 0.539303

IMG_724929 Elizabethtown Area 8- 14- 0 0.536014

30 Penn Manor 7- 15- 0 0.526221

31 William Penn 7- 15- 0 0.519693

32 Warwick 6- 16- 0 0.504665

33 Conestoga Valley 7- 15- 0 0.494249

34 Shippensburg Area 7- 15- 0 0.486946

35 Solanco 5- 17- 0 0.444533

36 Chambersburg Area 3- 19- 0 0.422036

37 Reading 3- 19- 0 0.420592

IMG_726438 Spring Grove Area 2- 20- 0 0.372861

39 Waynesboro Area 3- 16- 0 0.352671

40 Carlisle 1- 21- 0 0.324840

41 Garden Spot 0- 21- 0 0.278677

 

 

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