Huber helps North Penn bests Bishop Shanahan in District 1-AAAA 2nd round

TOWAMENCIN — In the first half Wednesday night, North Penn’s Jess Huber was simply on.

“I felt like Sam actually,’ Huber said of her teammate, sharp-shooting Sam Carangi, “because my shot was on so much. We just wanted to come out and play, and we were ready. We executed the game plan really well.’

Huber scored 16 of her game-high 22 points in the first half to keep the Maidens within four points of visiting Bishop Shanahan, and then the North Penn defense dominated the rest of the way, keying a 55-40 victory over the Eagles as the Maidens advanced to the District 1-AAAA Quarterfinals and secured a fourth straight spot in states.

“I think we’ve hit that peak area,’ Huber said of the eighth-seeded Maidens, who on Saturday will host No. 16 Spring-Ford, an upset winner over top-seeded Boyertown. “We’ve just played so many games and I think we’re hitting that peak.’

Huber connected for a trio of three-pointers in the first half, helping to pull the Maidens (19-6) to within 31-27 by the break. “Jess Huber kept us in the game in the first half. She just played unbelievably well offensively,’ Maidens coach Maggie deMarteleire said. “Thank goodness for that because otherwise we would have been in real trouble, because our defense was kind of non-existent. But we really did buckle down in the second half and play really outstanding defense.’

The Maidens, playing man-to-man the whole way, made it tough for Shanahan to get anything going inside after the break and allowed few open shots. Ciara Forde, who scored 12 in the first half for the No. 9 Eagles, including a pair of threes, was held to just a single point in the final two quarters.

Conversely, Huber’s production helped open the floor at the other end for the Maidens, and in addition to 10 points each from Carangi and Taylor Thames, the Maidens benefitted further from other key contributions.

“I thought our freshmen coming off the bench helped us in the second half,’ deMarteleire said. “Taylor Putnam had been struggling a little bit but she is a good shooter. Her two threes and then Bri Hewlett hitting a three kind of gave us a boost and opened up the spread.’

Hewlett’s three stretched the North Penn lead to 47-39 midway through the fourth, and then a layin by Huber pushed the margin to double digits. The Maidens, who got six rebounds, five assists and four steals from Thames, led the whole way in the fourth.

Shanahan, which got a team-high 13 points from Forde and 12 from inside force Devon Adams, will travel to Boyertown on Saturday in 9th-10th Place Playbacks.

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