York County basketball official Kevin Lawrence wears a microphone to show what it's like to be a youth official. York Dispatch
GETTYSBURG — Perhaps the old fable of the tortoise and the hare can best describe the District 3 Class 5-A girls’ basketball semifinal between West York and Gettysburg on Tuesday night.
The Bulldogs were certainly the hare, while the Warriors played the part of the tortoise.
The visitors owned the first quarter in the clash of York-Adams League Division II co-champions. The West York girls raced out to a 20-8 lead after a quarter.
It was a good start, but in the fable, it was more about the end than the beginning. That proved true for Gettysburg, too.
The Warriors (25-3) outscored the Bulldogs 40-18 over the final three quarters to earn a 48-38 triumph.
The No. 2 seeded Gettysburg girls earned the right to play for the District 3 5-A title at 7 Friday night at the Giant Center in Hershey. They will face No. 4 seed Twin Valley (21-6), which upset top-seeded Mechanicsburg, 46-37, in the other semifinal.
Eastern also earns title berth: One other Y-A girls' team also earned a District 3 title berth on Tuesday.
The Eastern York Golden Knights cruised to the 4-A championship game with a 51-28 semifinal triumph over Northern Lebanon.
The Knights dominated from the start. Mara Weaver (15), Addison Malone (11) and Victoria Zerbe (10) reached double digits in scoring for the Knights, who have won each of their district games by at least 20 points.
The third-seeded Knights will get their moment in the Giant Center spotlight at 6:15 p.m. Thursday against No. 1 seed Lancaster Catholic (24-3), which downed No. 4 seed Susquehanna Twp. in the other semifinal, 53-40.
Gettysburg and Eastern York become the third and fourth Y-A girls' teams to reach district championship contests this February, joining Central York (6-A) and Delone Catholic (3-A).
Gettysburg overcomes fast West York start: For the first eight minutes on Tuesday night, however, it didn't look like Gettysburg would be Hershey bound.
“They just came out and shot so well to start off,” Gettysburg coach Jeff Bair said. “And I just sensed that. They came to play and we had to buckle down defensively, which we did.”
The Gettysburg defense limited the Bulldogs to single digits in scoring the final three quarters. That included an impressive fourth stanza when the visitors managed just three points.
“We were fortunate to get back into it,” coach Bair said. “And we made the right plays when we needed.”
Many contributors: Those plays started with getting contributions up and down the lineup over the final three periods. Sophomore guard Anne Bair led the charge by scoring 12 of her team-best 14 points after the opening stanza.
Taylor Richardson also came up with a number of huge baskets, including a buzzer-beater to end the third quarter that put the Warriors ahead for good.
Fellow sophomore guard Camryn Felix drained a pair of 3-pointers in the second quarter to help Gettysburg draw to within four by the half. The Proctor twins combined to knock down a pair of shots from beyond the arc, while senior Lily Natter scored all six of her points in second half.
“We’re a good shooting team also,” coach Bair said. “Both of these teams are good shooting teams and you have to guard each other all the time. They lost us a couple of times and we made them pay.”
Technical foul ends the suspense: The Bulldogs, however, were not quite out of it until the West York bench was assessed a technical foul with 1:25 left. The call allowed Anne Bair, who was in the middle of shooting a 1-and-1 after making the first shot, to get three more attempts.
One of the most clutch players in the league despite being just a sophomore, Bair knocked down the next three attempts to stretch what was a 41-38 lead to 45-38.
“I knew that if those went in, that that would really, really help us,” Anne Bair said. “I was feeling good.”
Bair’s foul shots sucked the air out of any chances the Bulldogs had of a comeback. The technical foul compounded matters for West York because the Warriors were also given possession of the ball.
The Warriors were able to run off some clock before West York was forced to foul. Felix then made two more foul shots to extended the lead to three possessions (47-38).
“We just stuck together as a team,” Anne Bair said. “And that really helped us.”
A big week for Bair family: Tuesday’s victory was big, for not only the entire Gettysburg program, which will be gunning for the school’s first-ever District 3 title, but also for the Bair family. Monday evening, Linden Hall coach Ellen Bair, who is Anne’s older sister and Jeff’s daughter, won the District 3 2-A title.
Both coach Bair and Anne Bair are hoping to end the week with another district title for the family.
“We’re all so excited,” Anne Bair said with a smile. “That’s the hope.”
Alainna Hopta led the Bulldogs (21-5), who will face Mechanicsburg (23-3) in the third-place game at 7 p.m. Thursday at Mechanicsburg, in scoring with 16 points. The majority of Hopta’s points (12) came in the first quarter.
Spring Grove 65, Berks Catholic 53: At Spring Grove, the Rockets advanced to the District 3 5-A fifth-place game with the win. Lexi Hoffman (20), Ella Kale (19) and Haley Wagman (13) combined for 52 Spring Grove points. The No. 5 seed Rockets improved to 18-7. No. 8 seed Berks Catholic fell to 16-11. Spring Grove will play host to York Suburban at 7 p.m. Thursday. Both teams have already clinched state berths.
York Suburban 37, Lower Dauphin 35: At Lower Dauphin, the No. 7 seed Trojans advanced to the fifth-place game with a win over sixth-seeded Lower Dauphin. Suburban improved to 17-8. Lower Dauphin fell to 15-8.
Bermudian Springs 56, Fleetwood 48: At York Springs, the No. 5 seed Eagles won over No. 8 seed Fleetwood to advance to the District 3 Class 4-A fifth-place game. Bailey Oehmig (21 points), Skyler West (15 points) and Lillian Peters (11 points) paced the Eagles. Bermudian will play host to No. 6 seed Wyomissing at 7 p.m. Thursday. Wyomissing (18-7) beat No. 7 seed Bishop McDevitt (11-11) on Thursday, 56-50. The winner of the fifth-place game will earn a state berth.
Greenwood 39, Christian School of York 26: At CSY, the home team jumped out to a 14-7 lead after one quarter but couldn't hold on in a District 3 Class 1-A semifinal setback. No. 2 seed CSY fell to 23-3. No. 3 seed Greenwood improved to 20-6. CSY will play host to No. 5 seed Lebanon Catholic at 7 p.m. Thursday in the district 1-A third-place game. Lebanon Catholic (12-12) lost its semifinal to No. 1 seed Lancaster Country Day (21-3), 60-32. CSY beat Lebanon Catholic earlier this season, 44-30. Both teams have already earned state berths.
Reading 65, Central York 64: At Central, the home team dropped a heartbreaker in a District 3 Class 6-A boys' semifinal. No. 2 seed Central York will drop into the third-place 6-A district game after its loss to No. 3 seed Reading. The Panthers fell to 22-4. Reading is 18-7. Central will face No. 4 seed Cedar Crest in the third-place game at 7 p.m. Thursday at Central. Cedar Crest fell to top-seeded Wilson (26-1) in the other 6-A semifinal, 49-39. Evan Eisenhart scored 16 points to lead Central, while Mitch Saxton added 14 and Shiloh Johnson chipped in 10. The Panthers led 39-34 at halftime, but couldn't hold on for the win in a back-and-forth affair. Central is already guaranteed a state berth.
Reach Ryan Vandersloot at email@example.com.