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IMG_9022 BY JEFF FALK

SOUTH LEBANON – Competitive. Supportive. Accountable.

This current group know what it takes to be a Falcon, what it means to be a Falcon. And not only do they understand the meaning, they’re embracing it.

On Wednesday night at ‘The Cage’, a reinvented Cedar Crest girls’ basketball team used versatility, balance and a bit of tradition to down Conestoga Valley 49-40 in a Lancaster-Lebanon Section One affair. Following a back-and-forth first half, the Falcons used a key defensive surge early in the third quarter to gain control of the result, before ultimately pulling away from the visiting Buckskins.

The Falcons continued to show improvement in their quest to move on from the graduation of stalwarts Ariel Jones and Alyssa Austin. It was the third straight victory for Cedar Crest, which improved to 4-2 on the year and 3-0 in a section it has won the last two seasons.

IMG_8927With the outcome, Conestoga Valley slipped to 3-3 overall and 1-2 in the circuit.

“We expect to win the section. We expect to win the league. We expect to go to districts. We expect to go to states,” said Cedar Crest head coach Jim Donmoyer. “I honestly don’t think we can ever replace a kid like Ariel Jones. It’s a by-committee thing. We’ve got four post players, and they’re all young. We’re still searching for a person who’s the go-to kid. It might be a whole bunch of different kids.

“We’ll be alright,” continued Donmoyer. “Reese Glover is going to be a player, and we have three freshmen on varsity. They all get along. We’re balanced. We’re deeper. We can play more kids. If we get 16, 17, 18 wins everybody will be saying, ‘They won that many games without those (Jones and Austin) girls?’ Now role players are stepping up. If you know your role, you evolve into something else.”

Ahead two at the break, the Falcons held the Buckskins without a  point for a 4:51 span to open the second half. Then thanks to a three-pointer from senior Rachel Witherite and a driving lay-in by Glover, Cedar Crest opened a 27-21 margin later in the third.

IMG_8977Cedar Crest carried a 35-27 lead into the fourth quarter, courtesy of another trey by Witherite and a Kaitlin Kline inside move.

“We played good defense,” said Donmoyer. “Our goal defensively is 40 points. Not to give up more than 40 points. If we hold teams to 40 points or less, we’re going to win a lot of games. We scored what we average. Offensively, we could’ve done better. We missed a lot of lay-ups and we were horrible at the foul line. Defense is where it’s at. Defense wins championships. I’m happy.

“The most we’ve given up all year is 47,” Donmoyer continued. “It’s all been 40 and below. We’ve been doing it all year. We’ll be alright if we continue to play defense.”

The Falcons’ advantage reached 38-27 on a Glover three-pointer to open the fourth. Cedar Crest led 43-33 with less than two minutes to play, after Madison Rambler laid in a couple of deuces and Hannah Woelfling canned a free throw.

With four three-pointers and a dozen points, Witherite led a balanced Falcon attack that saw nine players make their way into the scoring column. Cedar Crest outscored Conestoga Valley 20-12 on field goals scored inside the arc.

“We knew we weren’t going to be 26-0,” said Donmoyer, referring to last season. “We’re taking it one game at a time. We just want to play the next one. In the locker room, I told the kids I thought we gutted it out a little bit. There was some stuff going on.

“Two people in particular stepped up, Madison Ramber and Morgan Thomson,” added Donmoyer. “Those kids got off the bench. That’s what it’s about. I played all of them because they can all play. When their number was called, we didn’t miss a beat.”

With Witherite draining a couple of ‘threes’ and Jade Rolon nailing a floater, the Falcons pieced together an early 8-0 run. Cedar Crest closed the initial period on a 9-1 burst, propelled by two Raven Morgan stick-backs, a three-pointer from Kline and a jumper by Glover, to establish a 17-7 advantage.

IMG_8964“We came out in the first quarter and got up ten,” said Donmoyer. “In the second quarter, they beat us 13-5. I told them (his players) at halftime, ‘We played two totally different quarters.’ Once we got out a little bit, we got some breathing room. We refocused at halftime. We made a couple of adjustments.”

By holding Cedar Crest without a score for a 4:40 span, Conestoga Valley netted the first 13 points of the second stanza to open a 20-17 edge. But Cedar Crest tallied the final five points of the first half, on a couple of elbow jumpers by Rolon and a Woelfling charity toss.

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

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2017-18 Cedar Crest Girls’ Basketball Schedule

Date Teams Result
12/08
6:00 pm
East Pennsboro
Cedar Crest
at Cedar Cliff Tournament
34
59
12/09
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
Cedar Cliff
at Cedar Cliff Tournament
42
47
12/12
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Wilson
32
45
12/14
7:30 pm
McCaskey
at Cedar Crest
36
65
12/18
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Warwick
49
26
12/20
7:30 pm
Conestoga Valley
at Cedar Crest
12/22
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Manheim Township
12/27
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
York Suburban
at York Suburban Tournament
12/28
TBD
TBD
Cedar Crest
at York Suburban Tournament
1/05
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Hempfield
1/08
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Lebanon
1/09
7:30 pm
Penn Manor
at Cedar Crest
1/12
7:30 pm
Elizabethtown
at Cedar Crest
1/16
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at McCaskey
1/19
7:30 pm
Warwick
at Cedar Crest
1/20
7:30 pm
Palmyra
at Cedar Crest
1/23
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Conestoga Valley
1/26
7:30 pm
Manheim Township
at Cedar Crest
1/30
7:30 pm
Hempfield
at Cedar Crest
2/02
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Penn Manor
2/06
7:30 pm
Cedar Crest
at Elizabethtown
2/07
7:30 pm
Cocalico
at Cedar Crest

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IMG_9033Lancaster-Lebanon League

 Section One Standings

League Overall
  W L PCT W L PCT PF PA
Manheim Township 3 0 100.00 6 0 100.00 338 210
Penn Manor 3 0 100.00 5 2 71.43 350 306
Cedar Crest 3 0 100.00 4 2 66.67 296 228
Elizabethtown 2 1 66.67 4 2 66.67 335 236
Conestoga Valley 1 2 33.33 3 3 50.00 264 251
McCaskey 0 3 0.00 1 5 16.67 250 371
Warwick 0 3 0.00 1 6 14.29 208 325
Hempfield 0 3 0.00 0 6 0.00 165 296

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