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BY JEFF FALK

MYERSTOWN – Playoff seedings?

Constant improvement?

Legacies?

Shoot! If they’re hanging a basket ten feet off the floor, donning uniforms and keeping score, then the Elco boys want to win basketball games.

On Wednesday night at Elco High School, the competitive Raiders prevailed in their final home game of the season, 71-45 over Susquehanna Township, to capture the third-place trophy of the District Three Class AAAA playoff tournament. Playing with a ton of energy, the Raiders fed off a good start and never relented.

Coming into the contest, the Raiders had dropped three of their last four outings. Third-seeded Elco, now 20-6, will meet the runner-up from District 12 on Friday, March 6th, at a site and time to be determined, in the first round of the PIAA Class AAAA playoffs.

Susquehanna Township, the fourth seed, fell to 15-9 on the year.

“It’s almost March and they’re still playing,” said Elco head coach Brad Conners of his troops. “It’s a unique situation. Our seniors got one last chance to play on our home floor. They love the game. They make it fun. I thought they played with heart tonight.

“It’s a really tight-knit group,” continued Conners. “They are friends off the court and I think that helps them on the court. Asher (Kemble) was really vocal tonight and encouraging everyone. They just like to play. One of the reasons is that they’re good at it, and another is they enjoy each other’s company. We don’t have any drama.”

Hustling and beating the Indians to loose balls, Elco never trailed after assuming a 4-0 lead on drives from Bryce Coletti and Kemble. Then a 9-2 run accentuated by a Kemble steal and jam put the Raiders up 15-4.

“I thought we set the tone very early,” said Conners. “It might have been our first or second possession. I really liked our defensive effort. I thought we did a good job of defending the lane. After the first quarter, we settled in on the glass. The seniors wanted to win the last game on their home floor, and Braden (Bohannon) wanted it for them.

“I think that’s (a hot start) a sign of a good team,” added Conners. “We controlled the tempo. For us to set the tone on the defensive end, it was a good way to start the game.”

With Susquehanna Township on its heels, Coletti converted a reverse lay-in and Evan Huey drained a three-pointer in the middle of the second quarter to increase the Raiders’ lead to 30-18. Elco also tallied the final two buckets of the first half, on Bohannon lay-ups, to carry a 34-23 advantage to the intermission.

“The elation of qualifying for states happened after the Eastern York game,” said Conners. “After the Bishop McDevitt game (in the District semifinal on Tuesday), there was no joy. The next day at school I saw Braden (Bohannon) and Ben (Horst) early, and their heads were down. It seemed like at practice, they turned the page and their spirits were lifted.

“We knew which district we were playing if we won tonight,” Conners continued. “But we didn’t worry about that. The big picture was our kids needed a win.”

Elco shot the ball very well all evening long, as Bohannon registered a game-high 25 points, Kemble recorded 15 points and Coletti struck for 14. The Raiders outscored the Indians 42-20 on two-point field goals and out rebounded them 34-31.

“The last few games it felt like we have one of the best teams in the district,” said Conners. “I think we can compete with just about anybody. We’ve held some really good teams in check and our defense has given us a chance.”

The Raiders removed any doubt about the outcome in the third stanza.

A three-point play from Horst, a Coletti drive and a Bohannon three-pointer to open the second half pushed the Raider advantage to 42-23. Later in the quarter, eight more Bohannon points, another Kemble jam and a lay-up by Evan Huey added up to 12 straight Elco points and a 56-27 bulge.

Then Bohannon opened the final quarter with a three-pointer that put Elco ahead 59-30.

“It’s good for our program,” said Conners. “Historically, Susquehanna Township is a powerhouse. For us to come out here and win like we did bodes well for this year and future years. Home games are so important.

“The goal now becomes win a state title,” continued Conners. “I told our guys, ‘Don’t let anyone tell you what you can’t do.’ Just because it’s never been done before doesn’t mean it can’t happen. We want to win a championship.”

To purchase images in this article email jkfalk2005@yahoo.com.

2019-20 Elco Boys’ Basketball Results

DateOpponentsOutcomes
12/06
7:30 pm
Elco
Lebanon
at Lebanon
57
53

Nonleague
12/07
7:30 pm
Elco
Cedar Crest
at Lebanon
55
59

Nonleague
12/10
7:30 pm
Annville-Cleona
at Elco
49
70

Nonleague
12/13
7:30 pm
Cocalico
at Elco
41
60

League
12/16
7:30 pm
Elco
at Manheim Central
73
71

League
12/18
7:30 pm
Solanco
at Elco
47
62

League
12/20
7:30 pm
Elco
at Lampeter-Strasburg
50
54

League
12/28
7:30 pm
Elco
Spring Grove
at Eastern York
76
52

Nonleague
12/30
7:30 pm
Elco
Eastern York
at Eastern York
75
51

Nonleague
1/03
7:30 pm
Octorara
at Elco
42
49

League
1/04
1:30 pm
Oley Valley
at Elco
48
62

Nonleague
1/08
7:30 pm
Camp Hill
at Elco
60
72

Nonleague
1/09
7:30 pm
Elco
at Donegal
87
55

League
1/10
7:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Elco
34
81

League
1/15
7:30 pm
Wyomissing
at Elco
44
49

Nonleague
1/17
7:30 pm
Lancaster Catholic
at Elco
69
55

League
1/21
7:30 pm
Elco
at Octorara
59
48

League
1/24
7:30 pm
Donegal
at Elco
34
58

League
1/28
7:30 pm
Elco
at Northern Lebanon
73
39

League
1/29
7:30 pm
Conrad Weiser
at Elco
58
81

Nonleague
1/31
7:30 pm
Garden Spot
at Elco
44
72

League
2/04
7:30 pm
Elco
at Lancaster Catholic
50
65

League
2/07
5:30 pm
Elco
Elizabethtown
at Warwick
49
50

Playoff
2/20
7:00 pm
Eastern York
at Elco
54
59

Playoff
2/24
7:00 pm
Elco
at Bishop McDevitt
49
53

Playoff
2/26
7:00 pm
Susquehanna Township
at Elco

Playoff

PIAA District Three

Final Class AAAA Power Rankings

AAAASchool W L T Rating TWP OWP TWPW OWPW TWPL OWPL
1***Lancaster Catholic19-2-0 0.762191 0.923596 0.564920 20.6 259.8 1.7 200.1
2***Bishop McDevitt17-2-0 0.751060 0.916870 0.548403 18.8 224.1 1.7 184.5
3***Eastern Lebanon County18-4-0 0.711677 0.848485 0.544467 19.6 260.5 3.5 218.0
4***Susquehanna Township14-7-0 0.661975 0.714607 0.597646 15.9 269.2 6.4 181.2
5***Littlestown18-4-0 0.643487 0.823256 0.423771 17.7 197.4 3.8 268.4
6***Eastern York14-8-0 0.628721 0.686364 0.558268 15.1 263.0 6.9 208.1
7***Wyomissing16-6-0 0.621187 0.765766 0.444480 17.0 209.4 5.2 261.7
8***Susquehannock12-10-0 0.601390 0.595349 0.608773 12.8 289.4 8.7 186.0
9***Octorara Area14-8-0 0.601272 0.681223 0.503555 15.6 233.8 7.3 230.5
10***Berks Catholic School12-8-0 0.587544 0.612745 0.556743 12.5 239.7 7.9 190.8
11James Buchanan11-11-0 0.529826 0.549065 0.506311 11.8 228.7 9.7 223.0
12East Pennsboro Area9-13-0 0.497445 0.432127 0.577279 9.6 268.6 12.6 196.7
13Schuylkill Valley10-11-0 0.493401 0.479616 0.510250 10.0 226.5 10.9 217.4
14Boiling Springs8-13-0 0.486786 0.428212 0.558378 8.5 250.6 11.4 198.2
15Middletown Area7-14-0 0.480847 0.354217 0.635617 7.4 286.3 13.4 164.1
16Northern Lebanon7-15-0 0.440695 0.350917 0.550423 7.7 260.4 14.2 212.7
17Kennard Dale6-16-0 0.429874 0.301887 0.586302 6.4 276.5 14.8 195.1
18Fleetwood7-14-0 0.392123 0.368675 0.420781 7.7 187.5 13.1 258.1
19Bermudian Springs7-14-0 0.387194 0.333333 0.453023 6.9 201.6 13.7 243.4
20Hamburg Area6-16-0 0.382099 0.283784 0.502262 6.3 233.1 15.9 231.0
21West Perry6-16-0 0.379199 0.278539 0.502227 6.1 231.2 15.8 229.1

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