It took some time for Cheektowaga to find its rhythm on offense. But all year long, the Warriors have worked on staying mentally in the game, even when things don’t fall their way.
That focus, and defensive intensity, kept Cheektowaga in the game and allowed the Warriors to go on a fourth-quarter spurt to force overtime and earn a 47-39 win over Lake Shore in a Section VI Class A-2 girls basketball semifinal Wednesday night.
They will play Pioneer, which defeated Iroquois, 47-33, in Saturday’s title game.
Lake Shore took a 21-12 halftime lead. It was a fourth-quarter spurt by the Warriors, 16-8, that sent the game into overtime. In the extra period, Cheektowaga outscored Lake Shore, 8-0.
“We came out nervous and shaky and put ourselves in a bad position,” Cheektowaga coach Lynnae Fenton said. “The girls had to work through it and got back to basics. We’ve been working on the refuse-to-lose mentality this year. We worked on getting them to understand that we have the physical ability, but it’s more about our mentality. They can’t quit on themselves or others.”
Mykia Lee had 14 points for Cheektowaga while Kenetria Redfern had 10 rebounds and 12 points.
In the Class B-1 semifinal, Taylor Potenze scored six of her eight points in the fourth to spur a big quarter for East Aurora in a 44-39 win over Maryvale. Emily Nason scored 15 points, including three three-pointers, to pace the East Aurora offense. Ciara Rosten netted 21 points for Maryvale.
East Aurora will meet Olean after the Huskies defeated Dunkirk, 43-36. Sara Ziegler (13 rebounds) and Kaylee Pearl each scored 15 points for Olean.
In Class A-1 semifinals, Cassie Oursler scored 34 points with 14 rebounds to pace Grand Island to a 65-42 win over McKinley. Leah Jones scored 11 points with 10 rebounds as Hamburg defeated Williamsville East, 49-35.
Anndea Zeigler scored 21 points as Buffalo Arts defeated Cleveland Hill, 51-44, in a Class B-2 semifinal. Arts will meet Wilson after the Lakewomen ousted Southwestern, 58-49. Jamie Curry had 12 points, 10 rebounds and 10 steals.
Tarron Scott collected the offensive rebound on a missed shot and went back up with the ball. He was fouled as time expired and stepped to the free-throw line with the game tied. He missed the first then sank the second to give Middle Early College a 56-55 win over Randolph in the Class C-1 semifinals.
Bryce Morrison hit a three-pointer to tie the game for Randolph. Middle Early College called a timeout with 20 seconds to set up a play and the shot by Kevin Briggs missed, but Scott was in position to make the play on the boards. Scott finished with 16 points and 11 rebounds.
Keir Anderson led Middle College with 21 points while Morrison finished with 17 for Randolph, including five three-pointers.
Middle College will play Oracle Charter in Saturday’s championship. Gerald Bibbs scored 20 points with 15 rebounds to pace Oracle to a 71-57 win over Barker.
With a 7-4 win over Appleby College (Ont.) the Nichols girls hockey team swept its best-of-three series to win the CISAA title. Allison Gasiuk scored four goals and Maddie Elia had three assists for Nichols (34-7-1).