BANGOR — Although Ellsworth cut into her team’s lead over and over in the second half, Winslow girls basketball coach Lindsey Withee never felt a pang of concern.

“When we took the lead at the beginning, I just felt confident the rest of the game,” Withee said. “We just had that energy. I saw it in the kids’ eyes, and they were ready to play.”

Each time the Eagles rallied, it was rebuffed by the Black Raiders, who took a 51-44 victory in a Saturday morning Class B North quarterfinal at the Cross Insurance Center.

No. 4 Winslow, now 16-3, will play No. 1 Houlton in the semifinals at 3:35 p.m., Wednesday. No. 5 Ellsworth finished the season 12-8.

“It feels so good after my freshman and sophomore years, getting here once and losing, and the other time not getting here at all,” Heather Kervin, who led the Black Raiders with 14 points, said. “It’s a really good feeling to get here and know we’re over that hump and we’re ready for the next step.”

Winslow took the lead for good, 16-15, on a Maeghan Bernard 3-pointer with 4:51 left in the second quarter. Winslow led 25-19 at the half and spent the second half fending off Ellsworth runs.

“The first quarter was all about getting the nerves out and after that it was just getting out to play our game,” Kervin said.

The Eagles cut Winslow’s lead to 29-27 with 5:35 left in the third quarter on a three-point play by Madison Card (18 points). The Black Raiders quickly pushed the lead back to five points, only to see the Eagles close to within three at the end of the quarter, 34-31.

Ellsworth cut Winslow’s lead to a point, 38-37, on a Caitlin Bean bucket with 4:22 to play, but the Black Raiders pulled away down the stretch. A Ciara LeClair basket gave Winslow a three-point lead, and Kervin made a foul shot to push the lead back to four.

After having success from outside in the first half, Winslow made a point of getting the ball inside in the second half, particularly in the fourth quarter. That led to free throw opportunities. Winslow was 8 for 11 from the line in the fourth quarter, and iced the game from the line over the final minutes.

“We tried to force the ball inside. They were in foul trouble, and we just tried to get them more into foul trouble and try to get to that free throw line,” Withee said.

Paige Trask scored 10 points for Winslow. Kervin scored 11 of her 14 in the second half.

“I feel most comfortable underneath (the basket). Toward the beginning of the game I wasn’t there the whole time. I was kind of drifting out toward the 3-point line. I kind of knew I had to step it up,” Kervin said.

Winslow held Card scoreless in the fourth quarter. Kate Whitney had nine points for the Eagles.

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

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