Shine’s big 3rd helps CB East best Pennridge in District 1-6A 1st round

BUCKINGHAM >> The Pennridge girls basketball came close to digging out of a hole in the first half. Elyse Shine and Central Bucks East did not give the Rams a chance to do the same after halftime.

“That’s what you got to do, you can’t let teams hang around,” Patriots coach Liz Potash said. “And they’re a good team — they make shots, so you never want a team to hang around.”

Host East scored the opening 13 points in Friday night’s District 1-6A first-round matchup between the Suburban One League Continental Conference rivals only for Pennridge to pull within two early in the second quarter and sit just four back of the Patriots at halftime.

But the 21st-seeded Rams could not find a way to stop Shine in the third — the junior scoring 13 of her game-high 21 points during the quarter, including five in a 10-0 run to start the half that gave No. 12 East a double-digit advantage it never lost in reaching the second round with a 51-39 victory.

“They did a pretty nice job of getting her open and obviously we’re focusing on One (Sophia Mancuso) and 24 (Bailey McManus) so I think we didn’t do a good job. She got a lot of weak-side stuff, so we didn’t do a very good job on the weak side,” Pennridge coach Mike Elton said. “And some of that could be the way we rotated to try and get to the shooters. They got four shooters out there plus you got Number 35 (Shine).”

Central Bucks East’s Gina Russo and Pennridge’s Emilee Cramer reach for a loose ball during their District 1-6A first round game on Friday, Feb. 16, 2018. (Gene Walsh/Digital First Media)

Down 13-0 less than five minutes in, Gill Anderson got the Pennridge offense going and in the second quarter knocked down a 3-pointer to cut the margin to 15-13. East pushed its lead back to 10 before the Rams posted eight of the half’s final 10 points to pull within 27-23.

Shine, however, collected the third quarter’s first basket and East continued to get her open inside and on short jumpers as the Patriots extended their lead to 17 heading to the fourth en route to winning their district opener for the third straight season.

“It was all about the hustle,” Shine said. “And really Soph (Mancuso) she really opened up the offense and she was finding people really well including me and I fee that’s what really got us going.”

Pennridge, meanwhile, went cold in the third, scoring five points with just one field goal — an Anderson putback that made it 43-28.

“I haven’t look at the (score) book but our shots weren’t falling either so I think you take that run and the shots aren’t dropping and then I think the mind set changed a little bit there,” Elton said. “I think we kind of gave up a few easy baskets there and had trouble getting back in the game.”

Anderson finished with a team-high 19 points — 13 in the first half — for the Rams, who were looking for its first district win since 2007. Sam Muredda added 12 points as Pennridge ends the season 11-12, a five-win improvement from 2016-2017.

“Some of our younger kids got experience in some tense game situations, so we’ll be back next year,” Elton said.

McManus hit a pair of 3-pointers in scoring 10 points while Mancuso chipped in nine points for Central Bucks East (15-8), which advances to face defending District 1-6A champ No. 5 Abington Tuesday. The Patriots lost on the road to the Galloping Ghosts 58-52 Feb. 6.

“We didn’t give them a great first half at there place and we had a great second half against them,” Potash said. “We need to play consistent and that’s something that we struggle with. If we play 32 minutes they way we’re capable of playing, we’d like to thing we can give them a game.”

Pennridge’s Gill Anderson squares to shoot during the Rams’ District 1-6A first round game against Central Bucks East on Friday, Feb. 16, 2018. (Gene Walsh/Digital First Media)

The Patriots came into Friday night having won six straight over the Rams, including both conference contest this season — 49-38 at Pennridge Jan. 3 and 60-50 Jan. 26 at East — but that did not dissuade Elton from believing his team could pull off the upset.

“I think we had a shot, I really did cause even the second game that we played here it was close enough that we ended up fouling and they made like eight free throws,” Elton said. “We came into the thing figuring we can compete with these guys. And I think you take away a couple of those shots and we don’t get buried in a hole like that it’s a whole different game.”

Anderson scored the last six points of the first quarter to make it 15-10 with her triple in the second pulling the Rams within 15-13. East responded with a 10-2 run to lead 25-15 after a McManus 3-pointer. But back-to-back threes from Muredda and Corrin Mart made it 25-21 and after a McManus jumper, Muredda scored in the final seconds to put the halftime margin at four

In the third, a Shine basket and a Mancuso trey had the Patriots up 32-23 while Shine’s three-point play at 5:17 extended the lead to a dozen. McManus hit a jumper for a 37-23 edge before Pennridge ended the run with two Muredda free throws at 4:19.

“They whole thing we talked about at halftime, the defense had to be better because offensively we can score the ball,” Potash said. “I wasn’t worried defensively that they were doing something we couldn’t handle — we had 27 points at half, so we were fine there. It was just the defensive side.”

Shine provided East with its last eight points of the third to go up 45-28 at the end of the quarter. The Patriots took its biggest lead in the fourth at 49-30 on a Shine basket. Pennridge scored the next seven — a Muredda three-point play with 2:14 left had lead at 12 but the Rams could pull no closer.

District 1-6A First Round
(12) CB East 51, (21) Pennridge 39
Pennridge           10 13   5 11 — 39
Central Bucks East           15 12 18   6 — 51
Pennridge: Gill Anderson 8 2-2 19; Sam Muredda 4 3-3 12; Corrin Mart 2 0-2 5; Brooke Bachtle 1 1-3 3; Totals 15 6-10 39.
Central Bucks East: Elyse Shine 10 1-1 21; Bailey McManus 4 0-0 10; Sophia Mancuso 2 4-4 9; Audrey LaBouliere 2 0-2 4; Gina Russo 2 0-0 4; Carolina Pla 1 0-0 3; Totals 21 5-7 51.
Three-pointers: P-Anderson, Mart, Muredda; CBE-McManus 2, Mancuso, Pla.

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