EMIGSVILLE — It’s safe to say that the Central York girls’ basketball team wasn’t feeling too great Friday evening.
Entering the final quarter with a seemingly comfortable 11-point lead on Dallastown, the Panthers suffered an unlikely melt down. The Wildcats outscored Central 18-6 in the final frame to claim a one-point upset victory.
Since then, the Panthers have been on a bit of a mission.
Unfortunately, the Eastern York girls were smack in the way of the inspired Panthers Monday evening.
Still smoldering after Friday’s collapse, the Central York girls came out against the Golden Knights like the team that many believe them to be — the best in the York-Adams League. There was little that the visitors could do to stop them.
Leading from almost the tip, the Panthers blitzed Eastern 26-10 over the opening period. Things didn’t drop off much from there. The home team stormed past the Golden Knights, 95-60.
“Offensively, I think we performed very well tonight,” said Central York coach Scott Wisner, whose team improved to 13-2 overall. “We got balanced scoring, and I think that we looked for everybody on the court. We ran the floor well, so our transition got us some easy baskets. So the offensive end was fantastic.”
There were two big keys to the Central surge Monday. One was the all-around terrific play of senior Emma Saxton, who poured in 20 points. The other was the dominating play inside of junior Teirra Preston, who led all scorers with 23 points.
Saxton was able to find Preston open under the basket a handful of times throughout the evening. With Central boasting a number of talented scorers outside, Preston’s emergence inside really makes life difficult on opponents.
“I’ve watched a lot of tape and I think they’re the best team in the county,” Eastern York coach Brad Weaver said. “We tried a bunch of different defenses against them and there was a point where three or four possessions the ball didn’t hit the ground. They just pass it that quick.”
This is the same Eastern side that really put the clamps on the one-two duo of Dover’s Rayah and Rajah Fink a week ago. Monday, all that Weaver could do was throw up his hands in the air trying to devise ways to put a damper on an explosive Central outfit.
It wasn’t just Saxton and Preston, either. In total, there were seven different Panther players who scored at least six points.
Saxton, however, stood out in Weaver’s mind.
“From all of the good teams that we’ve played so far this year, I haven’t seen anyone as good as her,” he said after his team dropped to 11-4. “She’s the best player by far with just how smart she plays. She works the ball and they got everything they wanted.”
Weaver is hoping that the final score will serve as a reminder to his team that they have to play hard and smart over a full 32 minutes against playoff-caliber competition.
“I told them to look at the scoreboard and take a mental picture of it,” he said. “Because I don’t want them to ever forget that score.”
While Wisner’s side was all smiles, the veteran coach was not really buying into the hype surrounding his team. For all of the team's positives, he remains focused on the areas he feels needs improvement — namely the 60 under the Eastern name on the scoreboard.
“The scoreboard looks like we dominated, but we’re not going to score 95 points consistently,” he said. “That’s an aberration and that’s why we have to do a better job on the defensive end. Those are things we have to keep working through.”
Hannah Myers led the Knights with 22 points while Addison Malone chipped in 10.
New Oxford 61, Spring Grove 36: At New Oxford, Kaelyn Long crossed over the 1,000-point mark for her career by scoring a game-high 17 and leading the Colonials to victory. Teammates Presley Berryhill (11) and Haley Still (10) scored in double figures for the victors. Spring Grove was led by 10 points from Lexi Hoffman.
Red Lion 55, Shippensburg 37: At Red Lion, the Lions outscored the Greyhounds in every quarter. Red Lion got balanced scoring, with Page Shingler leading the team with 11 points, including three 3-pointers, while Amy Maciejewski and Kynslee Shepard each had 10 points.
Manheim Twp. 51, Dallastown 30: At Manheim, the Wildcats saw their five-game win streak snapped with a non-league loss. Samantha Miller's eight points led Dallastown.
Susquehannock 53, Susquehanna Township 32: At Susquehanna, the Warriors (12-3) went on the road and easily took care of the Indians. Tyler Williams carried Susquehannock in scoring, pouring in 22, while Jayla Galbreath added 13.
Reach Ryan Vandersloot at firstname.lastname@example.org.