YORK — After a strong first half against rival Clover, the York Comprehensive High School girls’ basketball team’s third-quarter scoring drought enabled the visiting Lady Blue Eagles to pull away, prevailing 42-25 in a Monday night makeup game.
The YCHS girls stayed in the battle with favored Clover until all-region post player Carrie Lee Lancaster picked up her third personal foul before halftime.
With the Lady Cougars trailing 3-0 in the early moments of the first quarter, senior Skylar Sims’ three-pointer knotted the score at 3-all. A basket by Lancaster pushed York ahead 5-3, much to the delight of the home fans.
Moments later, a basket by Clover’s Elizabeth Edmunds gave the Lady Blue Eagles their first lead at 7-6. Clover expanded its lead to 13-6 by the time the first quarter drew to a close.
It appeared the CHS girls were on the verge of sealing the win when Sydney Sanders’ basket expanded Clover’s lead to 19-6 early in the second quarter.
York power forward Heather Pumphrey scored on a twisting move to the left of the basket, slicing the lead to 11 at 19-8. Clover answered moments later, making the score 21-10.
YCHS senior mainstay Hannah Cassell drilled a three-pointer from right of the circle, slicing Clover’s lead to eight (21-13) as the teams headed to the locker rooms for halftime.
The Lady Cougars were unable to find the range in the third quarter as Clover expanded its lead to 31-17 by the end of the quarter.
York had key baskets by Lancaster down the stretch as the Lady Blue Eagles sealed the win. Lancaster paced the scoring for York with 10 points. Castle finished with 5 points; Pumphrey, 4; and Sims, 3.
“Carrie Lee’s third foul in the first half was a huge turning point,” said Lady Cougar coach Paula Blackwell. “We weren’t able to hit our outside shots. Seniors Hannah and Skylar made some shots and went out on a positive note.”
With three rising seniors and five rising sophomores returning, Blackwell said offseason preparations will begin in March.
“Coach Stroud and I will help the players work on the fundamentals of the game,” she said. “We can control what we can. Our freshmen learned a lot this season and need to keep improving.”
Blackwell said the coaches and players aren’t happy missing the playoffs. “We want to get back to the upper tier of the region,” she said.