There is a lot going on in L-L League girls basketball circles. The league semifinals are set, with those two showdown games set to tip-off on Thursday. Meanwhile, the regular season is in wind-down mode, as teams look to improve their District 3 power rating, heading into Saturday’s deadline. There were six games on Wednesday. Here’s the roundup, plus some news and notables …
Pequea Valley 54, Octorara 10 — And thus ends the L-L League 2020-21 head-to-head section slate, as the Braves and the, um, Braves put a capper on those games for this season. PV got the win, and it went in the books as career dub No. 99 for coach Jason McDonald. Rebecca Cox scored 16 points, Brooke Liney popped in a trio of 3’s and scored 13 points, and PV went 22-2 in the second quarter and 12-0 in the third quarter to top Octorara. Ja’syah James bucketed 7 points for the host Braves. PV (5-5, 6-9) will try and earn a spot in the D3-3A bracket — and McDonald will go for his 100th victory — on Saturday when Oley Valley comes to Kinzers. Octorara (0-10, 0-12) still has some work to do; the Braves are at Donegal on Thursday, at York Tech on Friday, and then finish up March 1 at Schuylkill Valley.
SECTION 1-2 CROSSOVERS
Elizabethtown 60, McCaskey 39 — One night after being eliminated in the L-L League quarterfinals in heartbreaking fashion by Cocalico, the Section 2 co-champ Bears were back on the court to finish off their regular-season slate. Jade Love-Morris (15 points), Ainsley Raybold (12 points), Emma Blyler (season-high 11 points) and Carly Sedun (11 points) all scored in double-digits, and E-town (12-3) jumped out to a 23-9 first-quarter lead, was ahead 35-19 at the break, and then went 20-9 in the third quarter to slide past the host Red Tornado (1-12). Now, the Bears await their D3-5A assignment. Keymara Myers (12 points) and Alani Bosque (11 points) paced McCaskey, which finishes up Friday at Warwick and then Saturday at home vs. Conestoga Valley.
Manheim Township 51, Conestoga Valley 43 — Gianna Smith (13 points) and Gracie Martin (10 points) paced the Blue Streaks, who used a 23-4 second-quarter burst to grab a 31-18 halftime lead, and then fended off the host Buckskins (2-11) late. Ashley Cirilo popped in a career-high 14 points for CV, which outscored Township (9-7) in the second half by a 25-20 count to keep it close.
SECTION 3-4 CROSSOVER
Solanco 45, Elco 41 — Nikki Trout (14 points), Sammi Jackson (10 points) and Olivia Lasko (season-high 10 points) keyed the offense, and the Golden Mules closed the game on a 17-7 spree and rallied past the host Raiders. Kailey Eckhart knocked down three treys and scored 15 points and Amanda Smith added 13 points for Elco, which went 16-5 in the third quarter for a 34-28 lead. But Solanco (9-10) finished fast and shocked the hosts. One more date for the Mules; Solanco is at York Suburban on Thursday, with a shot to finish up with a .500 record this season. FYI: Smith is up to 892 career points for the Raiders (12-7), who will now wait it out for their D3-4A seed after a runner-up finish in the Section 4 race.
Susquehanna Township 60, Lebanon 57 — The host Cedars rallied valiantly, but Lebanon (2-16) couldn’t overcome a 30-24 halftime deficit and dropped a thriller to Hanna. Giahny Correa bucketed 25 points and Madison Bishop scored a season-high 14 points for the Cedars, who had a 33-point second-half outburst, but couldn’t get over the hump. One more game for Lebanon, which will make a short bus ride over to Fredericksburg on Thursday for a nonleague tilt with backyard rival Northern Lebanon; the Vikings also play at Schuylkill Valley on Saturday, as they make a late-season push for a D3-4A playoff slot.
Also Wednesday, D3-6A bubble team Warwick needed a crossover win at Penn Manor to remain in the chase for a playoff spot. And the Warriors picked up a must-have victory, thanks to some hot shooting. Here’s the game story …
* It’s not a playoff game, but it’s a super intriguing matchup: Section 2 co-champ Ephrata at Manheim Township on Thursday in a Section 1-2 crossover clash. Both squads are safe for D3-6A playoff slots — could this be a district-game preview perhaps? — and they’re capping their regular-season runs with this scrap. Circle it. … Other than the league semifinals, there are four nonleague games on Thursday’s docket, including Kennard-Dale at Lancaster Country Day, where the host Cougars are right on the bubble-line in D3-2A. So Country Day will need a W against the visiting Rams to remain in line for a postseason bid — after winning the last two D3-1A championships. ... As of this post, Octorara has the latest regular-season date on the L-L League schedule: March 1 vs. Schuylkill Valley. The District 3 playoffs begin March 2. Per the PIAA, teams are allowed to schedule games through March, as long as they don't go over the usual max 22 play-dates. We're not hearing any scuttlebutt — zero — about any L-L League teams adding any games moving forward. Spring sports practice begins March 8, and we all remember what happened to spring sports in 2020.
L-L LEAGUE SEMIFINALS
Lancaster Mennonite at Hempfield, 5:30 p.m. (LNP coverage)
Cocalico at Lancaster Catholic, 7 p.m. (LNP coverage)
SECTION 1-2 CROSSOVER
Ephrata at Manheim Township, 7:30 p.m.
Kennard-Dale at Lancaster Country Day, 6 p.m.
Octorara at Donegal, 7 p.m.
Solanco at York Suburban, 7:30 p.m.
Lebanon at Northern Lebanon, 7:30 p.m.