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 BY JEFF FALK

 NEW HOLLAND – They hadn’t qualified for the league playoffs in recent memory. But they performed like they had been there before.

 The difference between basketball and soccer is that in one, you can use your hands but not your feet, and in the other, you can you use your feet but not your hands.

 On Thursday evening at Garden Spot High School, the Elco girls’ basketball team drew from their overall competitive experience to score a 61-44 triumph over Ephrata, in a play-in game of the Lancaster-Lebanon League playoffs. The Raiders got off to a good start, played well with the lead, then pulled away from the Mountaineers late in the third period.

 In many ways, the performance was simply an extension of Elco’s outstanding regular season, as well as a nostalgic revisit to a memorable fall. The Raiders, who are fronted by many of the same performers who led Elco to District Three and Lancaster-Lebanon League girls’ soccer championships, moved to 18-4 overall and into Saturday’s 7 p.m. league quarterfinal at Section Three champion Solanco.

 Ephrata, the Section Two runner-up, slipped to 9-14 on the year.

 “Of our 17, there’s probably 13 soccer players,” said Elco head coach Ashli Shay. “When you have that kind of experience, you just build a lot of confidence. They play hard and they play together.

 “These kids have not experienced the basketball league playoffs,” Shay continued. “I hope this gives them some confidence. We certainly didn’t play our best basketball of the year.”

  After tallying the initial four points of the game, the Raiders never trailed. A subsequent 5-0 burst, which featured a Julia Nelson three-pointer and an Amanda Smith lay-up, staked Elco to a 9-4 lead.

 “I thought we were settling for jump shots early,” said Shay. “Jules (Nelson) has been on fire lately. But once we started to attack, it opened things up for us. We got better looks.

 “Every night, we hope to compete,” added Shay. “We always want to leave it on the floor. We were in a position of one-and-done. We just wanted to make sure we didn’t take anything for granted. We’re here and we belong.”

 The Raiders enjoyed three different seven-point leads in the second stanza – 15-8 on an inside maneuver by Ryelle Shuey, 17-10 courtesy of a driving lay-in by Cassie Johnson and 20-13 thanks to a Jordan Rosengrant three-ball.

 “I think at times, we did well defensively, and at other times, we didn’t,” said Shay. “I thought we had some breakdowns in transition. We want that consistent effort, all the time.

 “If we play the way we’re capable of playing, we can keep ourselves in games,” continued Shay. “I think we present match-up problems in some areas.”

 The Raiders’ attack was both potent and balanced. Smith, a sophomore, tallied a team-high 18 points, and Nelson pumped in 15. Rosengrant notched 13 points, and Shuey collected 11.

 Elco outscored Ephrata 15-6 from three-point land. The Raiders made good on ten of their 13 foul shots.

 “Amanda Smith does a great job in leak-outs,” said Shay. “She’s so fast. And Rye is very good at outlet passes. We do nice things in transition. We just have to play defense.”

 The Raiders created some distance between themselves and the Mounts in the third period.

 A 9-0 run in the middle of the period pushed Elco’s advantage to 37-21. Rosengrant registered five points during the 2:19 stretch, while Nelson hit another jumper and Shuey canned a couple of charity tosses.

 “The message at halftime was: ‘Don’t be afraid and nervous,'” said Shay. ” ‘We’re here. Let’s play.’ We just needed to up our energy.

 “It (the score) felt closer than it was,” added Shay. “We were just so up and down. If we can do the things we do well consistently, we’re a tough match-up. We made big plays when we had to make big plays. Julia hit some ‘threes’ that, timing-wise, were daggers.”

 Nelson opened the final quarter with a three-pointer that pushed the Raider lead to 48-36. An old-fashioned three-point play by Rosengrant four minutes later made Elco’s advantage 53-39.

 “For everybody, it was their first league playoff game ever,” said Shay. “I felt this weird nervous vibe. But I thought the pressure we put on in the second half helped.”

 Play Present.

 

 

 

 

 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
   
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 PIAA District Three
 Class AAAA Power Rankings
 
AAAA School  W  L  T  Rating  TWP  OWP  TWPW  OWPW  TWPL  OWPL
1 Lancaster Catholic 21- 0- 0  0.809805  1.000000  0.577344  23.4  258.7  0.0  189.4
2 Bishop McDevitt 19- 2- 0  0.796649  0.930283  0.633318  21.4  283.6  1.6  164.2
3 Kennard Dale 20- 2- 0  0.751441  0.922131  0.542820  22.5  253.9  1.9  213.8
4 Eastern Lebanon County 17- 4- 0  0.713957  0.834452  0.566685  18.7  253.5  3.7  193.8
5 Eastern York 15- 7- 0  0.679960  0.732906  0.615249  17.2  297.0  6.3  185.7
6 Big Spring 13- 6- 0  0.622221  0.726098  0.495260  14.1  201.2  5.3  205.0
7 Bermudian Springs 14- 7- 0  0.607853  0.665083  0.537906  14.0  245.9  7.1  211.2
8 Susquehanna Township 11- 11- 0  0.598419  0.570455  0.632599  12.6  297.1  9.5  172.6
9 Wyomissing 14- 8- 0  0.585899  0.685990  0.463565  14.2  211.2  6.5  244.4
10 Northern Lebanon 11- 9- 0  0.554836  0.602439  0.496655  12.4  230.2  8.2  233.3
11 Oley Valley 13- 8- 0  0.534259  0.612293  0.438885  13.0  195.2  8.2  249.5
12 West Perry 11- 11- 0  0.514233  0.506637  0.523518  11.5  226.5  11.2  206.2
13 Fleetwood 9- 12- 0  0.507476  0.486420  0.533211  9.9  232.0  10.4  203.1
14 Schuylkill Valley 11- 11- 0  0.489537  0.537209  0.431271  11.6  191.7  10.0  252.8
15 James Buchanan 10- 10- 0  0.489166  0.531401  0.437545  11.0  182.2  9.7  234.2
16 Littlestown 9- 12- 0  0.478271  0.422434  0.546515  8.9  252.9  12.1  209.9
17 Middletown Area 7- 12- 0  0.464591  0.395466  0.549077  7.9  223.2  12.0  183.3
18 Boiling Springs 8- 11- 0  0.464001  0.454780  0.475270  8.8  202.8  10.6  223.9
19 Hamburg Area 8- 14- 0  0.419301  0.386473  0.459424  8.0  209.8  12.7  246.8
20 Octorara Area 0- 19- 0  0.267141  0.000000  0.593647  0.0  243.9  17.9  167.0
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 Lancaster-Lebanon League

 Section Four Standings

 
  League Overall
  W L PCT W L PCT PF PA
Lancaster Catholic 13 0 100.00 22 0 100.00 1516 817
Elco 10 3 76.92 17 4 80.95 1039 779
Northern Lebanon 6 6 50.00 11 9 55.00 825 725
Donegal 4 9 30.77 10 12 45.45 1209 1162
Octorara 0 11 0.00 0 19 0.00 365 1220
 

 

 

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