DOVER — It wasn't the way the Dover boys' basketball team envisioned the first round of the District 3 Class 5-A playoffs.
The No. 4-seed Eagles, unbeaten on their home court this season, had hoped to ride that advantage to victory, but they ran into a sharpshooter by the name of Jordan Shewbridge and fell to No. 13 Garden Spot 66-59 Monday night.
The loss sends Dover (19-5) into the consolation round Thursday night against 12th-seeded Shippensburg (14-8) at 7 p.m. at Dover. Garden Spot (15-10), meanwhile, will visit No. 5 Milton Hershey.
Shewbridge, who has more than 60 3-point baskets this season, finished with 31 points. The 6-foot senior guard had six 3-pointers vs. Dover. Coupled with teammate Keontae Nunn, who had 22 points, it was a lethal combination that proved too much for Dover.
"I've known him since he was a little kid and he's always been a 3-point shooter," Garden Spot coach Ryan Trube said of Shewbridge, who went over 1,000 points for his career during the third quarter. "Once he gets 'em going, it's tough to stop him. He's been trying to evolve as a player to become more than just a 3-point shooter, but we're blessed to have him.
"We felt pretty good with the match-ups, but it was a long bus ride — over an hour — and we just weren't sure whether we'd show up in the first quarter, but our guys came out firing."
Dover starts slowly: That they did. Shewbridge had two 3-pointers in the first quarter and the Spartans quickly built a 17-5 advantage. Dover standout Keith Davis, who finished with 29 points, picked up two quick fouls and had to sit, which didn't help the Eagles' comeback efforts. However, two free throws by Davis midway in the second quarter got Dover within 26-21 before the half ended with the Spartans up 32-25. Besides Shewbridge's torrid shooting, the Eagles hurt themselves with nine first-half turnovers.
"We played them last year, but I don't remember seeing him shoot like that," Davis said of Shewbridge. "He was hitting everything tonight."
Although Dover never got the lead, it did close the gap within 47-46 on consecutive 3-pointers by Elijah Sutton and Davis to end the third quarter. Davis had 14 points in the quarter, including four 3-pointers.
"He's everything you see on film," Trube said of Davis. "Both him and No. 22 (Elijah Sutton) are really nice players and they really scared me because they shoot the ball so darn well. We had to stress to our guys not to worry if they start making shots ... that's what they do. Let's see if we can get a few stops and we'll be fine."
Dover managed to knot the score at 48-48 early in the fourth. Garden Spot, however, then went on an 8-0 run to pull away for good.
"I think we made him (Shewbridge) hit some contested shots, but a couple of times we arrived late or didn't have a hand up and he lit us up," Dover coach Brian Schmoyer said. "He's a heckuva of a shooter and he torched us tonight.
"We cut down their lead numerous times, but then we'd come down court and didn't take care of the ball. I think when we did tie the game we missed a layup that would have put us on top and then they came down and Shewbridge made a three and they went back up. We were right there, but we could never get over that hump."
OTHER DISTRICT 3
York High 57, New Oxford 53: At New Oxford, the 10th-seeded Bearcats pulled off a mild upset over seventh-seeded New Oxford in a first-round District 3 Class 5-A contest.
With the win, the Bearcats clinched a state playoff berth. Ten teams in the 16-team 5-A field make the PIAA tournament, so all of the first-round winners are assured of at least one state game.
In the quarterfinals at 7 p.m. Thursday, York (14-9) will travel to No. 2 seed Greencastle (21-3). New Oxford (17-8) is still alive for a state playoff berth. The Colonials will play host to No. 15 Donegal at 7 p.m. Thursday in an elimination game. Donegal lost to Greencastle on Monday, 77-61.
York used an 18-12 fourth-quarter surge to rally for the win. Kyree Generett led York with 18 points, while Clovis Gallon Jr. added 15. Deriq Brown (14), John Wessel (12) and Jaren Rex (11) each hit double digits for the Colonials.
Northeastern 58, Conrad Weiser 45: At Manchester, the third-seeded Bobcats secured a state playoff berth with a win vs. 14th-seeded Conrad Weiser in a District 3 5-A first-round contest.
Ten teams in the 16-team 5-A field make the PIAA tournament, so all of the first-round winners are assured of at least one state game. Northeastern will play host to sixth-seeded Hershey (20-4) at 7 p.m. Thursday in the quarterfinals. Hershey beat 11th-seeded Exeter (15-10) on Monday, 54-50.
Northeastern is the defending District 3 5-A champion.
Northeastern jumped out to a 23-10 first-quarter lead and led the rest of the way. Antonio Rizzuto poured in 34 points to lead the Bobcats. Fred Mulbah and D.J. Hamilton added 10 each.
There will be an advance ticket sale for the Hershey-Northeastern game at the ninth-grade office (198 N. Hartman St, Manchester), from 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. Tuesday and from noon until 2 p.m.Wednesday. Tickets are $6 for adults and $4 for students and limited to two per person. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.
Lancaster Mennonite 65, York Catholic 44: At Lancaster Mennonite, the fifth-seeded Irish dropped the District 3 Class 3-A quarterfinal.
Riley Brennan led the Irish with 14 points. Teammate D'Andre Davis knocked in 13 points. The loss ends the season for York Catholic at 15-9. Fourth-seeded Mennonite improved to 17-7.
Reach George Hammond at email@example.com.