Susquehannock head girls' basketball coach Dave Schreiner decided his team would give New Oxford a new look when the teams met for a second time on Thursday night.
The man-to-man defense, which the Warriors used the first time, was scrapped and replaced by a 2-3 zone.
Different defense. Different result.
After losing the first meeting, Susquehannock prevailed in the rematch, 51-34, and moved on in the PIAA Class 5-A playoffs.
The Warriors also set another school record in the process.
They improved their won-loss mark to 25-3, ensuring they'll finish with the best record in the school's girls' basketball history. The 1990-91 Warriors set the previous standard of 24-4.
This year's team previously became the first Susquehannock girls' team to win a district title and also triumph in a state playoff game.
The current club made it 2 for 2 in state games with its second-round victory. The Warriors are one of just eight teams still competing in the bracket.
They secured their spot in the quarterfinals by combining a balanced offense with a defense that held New Oxford to no more than 12 points in any quarter. New Oxford connected on just 12 of 43 shots from the floor.
"The first time, we didn't have Tyler (Williams), Jaden (Walker) and Anna (Mahan) for large parts of the first half, and they all fouled out," Schreiner said. "The zone worked tonight. They hit some threes, but, for the most part, we were in control of the game defensively."
Offensively, three Warriors finished in double figures — Walker and Jayla Galbreath each scored 13 points, and Taylor Tannura supplied 10 points.
Walker and Galbreath, who are both sophomores, began playing together when they were 6 years old.
"We play for the school, and we play AAU together," Walker said. "It's such an honor to be part of a team like this."
Galbreath said the loss to New Oxford in the York-Adams Tournament quarterfinals was a wake-up call for the Warriors.
"Coach found the things we needed to work on, and we executed," she said.
Susquehannock, which scored the first eight points of the game, never trailed. New Oxford pulled within three (14-11) at the end of the first quarter, but the Colonials didn't draw any closer the rest of the way.
Haley Still led New Oxford with 15 points, all of them coming on three-point shots.
The Colonials' leading scorer, Kaelyn Long, saw limited action playing with a broken thumb on her shooting hand. Long suffered the injury in last Saturday's state playoff game.
She averaged 17 points a game this year and scored 20 against Central in the York-Adams Tournament championship game.
"I know there was talk, 'is she going to play, or is she not going to play,'" Schreiner said. "Whether she played or didn't play really wasn't important to me. What was important was that we executed."
The Warriors executed and added another victory in their historic season.
"There's a lot of records that these kids have set this season, and I'm so proud of them" Schreiner said. "I told them in the locker room, 'you need to enjoy this and enjoy the accomplishments.'"
Susquehannock will face District 11 champion Southern Lehigh in the quarterfinals Saturday at a site and time to be determined. Southern Lehigh downed Mastery Charter North on Thursday, 77-47.
Reach Dick VanO'Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org.