Sunday, February 19, 2023

GIRLS BASKETBALL: Lady Spartans Win Schuylkill League Championship in OT Over Marian Catholic

It took an extra quarter to determine a Schuylkill League Girls Basketball Champion on Friday night.

North Schuylkill entered Friday night's game seeking their 17th League Championship and Marian Catholic seeking their 11th.

North Schuylkill's last championship was in 2021 but it has been since 2008 since the Fillies took home the crown.

Both teams had something prove and with a packed Martz Hall, the girls were ready to put on a show.

Halfway through the first, the Lady Spartans held a 10-5 lead, and finished out the quarter 16-11.

North Schuylkill held that lead through the 2nd quarter but by the half, Marian was on the Lady Spartans' heels and by the mid 3rd quarter, held a 7- point lead, 40-33.

By the beginning of the 4th, Marian only held a 3-point lead 45-42.

For the final 4 minutes of the game, the lead swapped multiple times as they went shot for shot.

With 1.6 seconds left on the clock in regulation, North Schuylkill held a 52-51 lead until Marian hit a free throw to tie up the score and send the game into overtime.

That extra quarter would allow the Spartans to control the ball and win the 56-52.

After the game, North Schuylkill Head Coach Rich Wetzel said "If you want to talk about a tough game, Marian is a great squad, well coached, and they played great today.  They took some advantages of some of our weaknesses, and we had to come back from that.  This was a team effort.  These kids have games where they are on and games where they are off and in order to have a championship team, we need kids that can fill in.  That's what we had here tonight."

Both teams move onto the District XI Tournament.

North Schuylkill gets a bye for the first round of the 4A tournament and is scheduled to play the winner of Northwestern/Saucon Valley on Wednesday, March 1st, 2023.

Marian Catholic also gets a bye for the first round and will play the winner of Panther Valley/Northern Lehigh on Wednesday, March 1st, 2023, in the 2A tournament.