BANGOR — Having beaten John Bapst in two close games in the regular season, the Waterville girls basketball team expected a tough game in the Class B North quarterfinals. The Purple Panthers didn’t expect to have to come from behind, though.

Trailing the Crusaders by four points entering the fourth quarter, Waterville got hot, pulling away for a 44-35 win. No. 3 Waterville, now 19-0, will face either No. 2 Hermon or No. 7 Presque Isle in the semifinals. No. 11 John Bapst ends the season at 7-13.

Down 25-21 entering the fourth and struggling to hit shots, Waterville started to click. The Panthers opened the fourth with a 9-0 run, taking the lead for good, 26-25, on a Maddy Martin 3-pointer. The nerves that come with being a young undefeated team almost overwhelmed the Panthers early, sophomore guard Jayda Murray said.

Waterville’s Jayda Murray dribbles past John Bapst defender Lacie Scanlon during a Class B North quarterfinal game Friday night in Bangor. Morning Sentinel photo by Dave Leaming

“Coach (Rob Rodrigue) has always talked to us about maturity, and just growing up and getting over mistakes you make in the first quarter. You’ve got to get over it. It’s just doing it for your teammates,” Murray, who scored 10 of her 12 points in the fourth quarter, said.

Sadie Garling scored eight of her game-high 19 points in the fourth quarter for Waterville, including a pair of 3-pointers to help the Panthers expand their lead.

Rodrigue felt his team’s depth was a factor in outscoring the Crusaders 23-10 in the fourth quarter.

“I really think in the fourth quarter, they were a little more fatigued, and our kids ratcheted it up with their intensity,” Rodrigue said.

John Bapst closed the first half with an 8-0 run to take a 16-12 lead into the break. Emily Mock’s 3-pointer with 1:21 left in the second gave the Crusaders their first lead, 13-12. With 27 seconds left, a three by Sydney Ellis pushed Bapst’s lead to four points.

For much of the first half, Waterville did not play like an undefeated team. The Panthers did not shoot well from the field (4 for 28 in the first half) or the line (1 for 4), where they missed the front end of two one and one opportunities. Waterville also had 12 turnovers in the first half.

Waterville’s Paige St. Pierre, left, and Abigail Saucier pressure John Bapst’s Lacie Scanlon during a Class B North quarterfinal game Friday night in Bangor. Morning Sentinel photo by Dave Leaming

With shots not falling, it helped that the Panthers dominated the glass, outrebounding Bapst 50-43, with 19 offensive rebounds. Kali Thompson had 12 boards for Waterville, eight offensive. Martin added 10 rebounds, despite playing much of the second half in foul trouble.

“We were talking a lot of getting to the rim. We settle at times. It’s hard when you have kids like Sadie and Maddy and Abby (Saucier) those kids who can fill it up a little bit. You rely on that,” Rodrigue said. “Our kids are pretty tenacious on the offensive glass.”

Sydney Ellis led the Crusaders with 11 points.

 

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

Twitter: @TLazarczykMTM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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