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Big third quarter propels Marauders

In its most recent games, starting off strong has been a problem for the Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic girls basketball team.

“We’ve had a couple of different rotations the last couple of games, so we’re trying to find a chemistry element in there, too,” Lady Marauder coach Kristi Kaack said. “We just missed wide open layups in the first quarter. Credit (Conemaugh Valley), they came out ready to play. We made our own mistakes tonight.

“We’re clearly not the underdogs when we’re coming into the district playoffs.”

They ultimately overcame them again as the No. 1 seeded Lady Marauders enjoyed a 23-8 outburst to start the second half en route to a 60-35 win over the No. 8 Lady Jays in the District 6 Class 1A quarterfinals at the Pleasant Valley Gymnasium.

Neither side scored a field goal in the first quarter until a layup from BG’s Leah Homan with around 5:30 to go in the opening frame. Teammate Teresa Haigh finished off the quarter, scoring 13 of her 21 points to give the home team a 16-10 lead after one.

“It’s about emotional toughness, trusting the offense, trusting our teammates and just relying on knowing it will come and believing in that,” Homan said.

The Lady Marauders’ offense started to turn things around in the second, thanks to seven points each from Homan and Sophia Warner to give them a 35-21 lead at the break.

Coming out of the locker room, the BG offense came to life, and it was powered by a pair of turnovers which turned into layups from Homan, as she led all scorers with 22 points and helped activate the running clock.

“She’s doing some stuff underneath the hoop that most of the time you look for her to do it around the perimeter,” Kaack said. “We think she’s doing a nice job of getting inside and finishing with a little bit of contact.”

“I thought our team just needed a spark in the second half,” Homan said. “Not that we were doing bad in the first half, but it just really wasn’t the team that we could be. I thought we needed to pick up the energy and we did.”

Conemaugh Valley coach Teri Cruse was grateful to have the playoff experience.

“Going into this they really felt like they had nothing to lose,” she said. “We wanted to get experience because we’re loaded with juniors who have been our main players since they were freshmen.”

Bishop Guilfoyle’s focus will now be on Williamsburg scheduled for this Thursday at home.

“They’re young, they’re physical, they play hard, they’re well-coached. We met them in the fall league, so it’s not like we’re unfamiliar with them,” Kaack said of the Lady Pirates. “We know what we’re getting, and we know it’s going to be a battle for sure.”

CONEMAUGH VALLEY (35): Price 2 2-3 7, Grecek 4 0-0 11, Gunby 2 0-2 4, H. Stiffler 2 0-0 5, Keyser 1 0-0 2, Davison 2 0-0 5, Reninger 0 0-0 0, J. Stiffler 0 1-2 1. Totals — 13 3-7 35.

BISHOP GUILFOYLE (60): Warner 5 0-1 11, Homan 10 1-2 22, Scipioni 1 1-3 3, Haigh 6 6-6 21, Adams 1 0-0 3, Quinn 0 0-0 0, Bagley 0 0-0 0, Geishauser 0 0-2 0. Totals — 23 8-14 60.

SCORE BY QUARTER

Conemaugh Valley 10 11 8 6 – 35

Bishop Guilfoyle 16 19 23 2 – 60

3-point goals: Conemaugh Valley 6 (Price, Grecek 3, Davison, H. Stiffler), Bishop Guilfoyle 6 (Warner, Homan, Haigh 3, Adams)

Records: Conemaugh Valley (5-14), Bishop Guilfoyle (12-3).

Officials: Brian Jaymes, Denny Detwiler, Bill Musser.

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