SPRING GROVE -- Sunday's York-Adams League Senior Girls' All-Star Basketball Game provided some players an opportunity to put on their school colors one last time.
After the thrills of an action-packed battle between the Division I-II stars against the Division III-IV standouts ended in a 75-68 victory for the Division I-II squad, there finally was time for reflection on their careers and their futures.
On one end the spectrum was Dover's Kara Funk, who only recently saw her team's incredible season end after a hard-fought loss to eventual PIAA Class AAAA champion Spring-Ford.
As disappointing as that loss was, the season as a whole provided Funk, her teammates and the Dover fans many reasons to revel in their history-making achievements. The Eagles finished the regular season with an undefeated 22-0 record that secured the program's first-ever division title. They also finished fourth in the District 3 tournament to clinch the school's first state playoff berth.
Then there was the pair of upsets in the PIAA tournament against West Chester Bayard Rustin and Nazareth. Funk and company rallied from a double-digit deficit against Rustin to earn a last-second victory. They followed that up with an impressive showing against District 11 champ Nazareth to reach the state quarterfinals.
"I don't know if I'll ever be able to put it into words," Funk said after scoring nine points in her team's victory on Sunday. "It was exciting. Some games were surprising the way we fought back. All together I just that thought it was something that I'll never forget."
Along the road to that undefeated regular season was a tough three-game stretch in which the Eagles defeated York-Adams champion Dallastown, York-Adams Division I champion West York and defending York-Adams champ Red Lion.
"It was a team effort," said Funk, who has narrowed her collegiate choices to Kutztown, Lock Haven and York College. "Everything that we practiced just came together and worked."
On the other side was Kennard-Dale's Sara Tarbert, who broke a couple of school records on the way to earning an NCAA Division I scholarship to the University of Maryland-Baltimore County.
"My senior year, by far, was my favorite year," said Tarbert, who scored 17 points in the setback on Sunday. "Some of my best friends are on the team and we just got along together so well."
Tarbert led the York-Adams League in scoring this year with a 24.1 points-per-game average. She also took over the top spot in school history in both scoring (1,742), breaking Kelly Bragg's 29-year old record, and rebounding (1,028). Her 603 total points this past season were also the highest single-season tally in K-D's history.
"I think beating Kelly Bragg's record was something," Tarbert said of her proudest accomplishment at K-D. "But I was really proud of my rebounds. I wasn't sure if I was going to get 1,000, but I ended up getting it in the Dover game at the very end. It was one of the last games of our season so I'm just happy I was able to get that."
Now Tarbert will prepare to take the next step in her basketball career at UMBC, where she figures to play small forward.
"I'm just really excited," she said. "The offense that they run is the (same) as the offense I had in AAU. I'm smaller for a forward, but that's what they recruited me as. It's just constant movement and that's what I'm comfortable doing."
Then there was West York's Sarah Shearer, who couldn't play in the contest after suffering a knee injury that ended her season against Dover in January. Along the way, however, Shearer was able to become just the fourth girl in West York history to eclipse the 1,000-point mark for her career. Still, the sting of having to watch her team battle through the York-Adams, District 3 and PIAA playoffs without her was difficult to stomach.
"It was really tough," she said. "I love to play basketball and it's hard not being able to play a sport that you love. But my role changed and I was there to support the team. I was really happy that we made it so far."
Shearer was also proud of her two years at West York as a whole. The Bulldogs won division titles both years -- Division II last year and Division I this year. This year's feat also ended Red Lion's 12-year reign atop the league's top division.
"Winning the division both years was a big accomplishment," said Shearer, who plans to play for York College next year. "We just stuck together as a team. It's been a great two years and I'm just really proud of all the accomplishments."
-- Reach Ryan Vander sloot at sports@yorkdis patch.com.