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Plymouth Whitemarsh wins SOL Tournament title

WHITEMARSH >> Plymouth Whitemarsh won the Suburban One League Tournament championship with a 52-15 win over Pennsbury Tuesday night at Plymouth Whitemarsh High School.

“We really deserve it,” PW senior Jordyn Thomas said of the program winning its first SOL Tournament title. “It’s gratification for all of the work we’ve put in over the last few months and it’s actually just a really fun thing to enjoy.”

“This means a lot,” PW coach Dan Dougherty said. “Not the accomplishment of beating Pennsbury, we’re not puffing our chest out about that, but look at these six games in eight days. Professionals don’t do that. To me, it just shows a lot of the character of our girls. Even tonight, you’re not going to play your starters against us, OK we’re not going to try to run up the score or anything, but we’re still here to play basketball. These kids want to beat you at Uno. Whatever the game is, they want to play.”

Thomas and Lainey Allen led the top-seeded Colonials with 14 points apiece. Abby Sharpe added 12 points and Erin Daley scored nine.

PW jumped all over the third-seeded Falcons, who didn’t play their starters. The Colonials won the first quarter, 23-0, and opened the game with 27 straight points.

The lead grew to 38-7 at halftime, 47-13 after three quarters and 52-15 at the final whistle.

Plymouth Whitemarsh’s Jordyn Thomas

Preparing for districts

Pennsbury rested its starters for the SOL Tournament title game. Ava Sciolla, Layla Matthias, Sofia Vitucci, Nicole Pompili and Nevaeh Dash all played in the Falcons semifinal win over Souderton Monday night before sitting out the championship Tuesday.

“What is our ultimate gameplan here in terms of what are we looking for,” Pennsbury coach Frank Sciolla said, noting some of his players have been battling injuries over the last week. “Do we want to push through this and maybe we potentially can get this but then sacrifice next week. You’re weighing that against it.

“Who’s playing seven games in nine days? Is the WNBA? The NBA? Is college? Would that be allowed? No. We were up front with it and we talked to everybody and we explained the dynamic. We’re trying to get down the road for bigger things. We have all the respect in the world for PW. They’re really, really good. They’re a worthy champion.”

The easier path didn’t take anything away from how PW felt about the championship.

“We play together and we go out every game knowing we are going to execute, play with confidence and do our thing,” Thomas said. “We know what we’re doing out there and we are just going to play.”

Plymouth Whitemarsh is the No. 1 seed in the District 1-6A playoffs and Pennsbury is No. 4. If both teams win two games, they would meet in the semifinals.

Call for change

After the game, the teams shook hands and Pennsbury headed right to their locker room and fans filed out of the gym. Plymouth Whitemarsh received the SOL Tournament championship trophy without much of a ceremony. Dougherty was upset with no one being given any direction or script for the trophy presentation and, with scores being recorded incorrectly Friday night, believes things need to change for girls sports.

“The thing that was hurtful to me was the game ended and everyone just left,” Dougherty said. “There was no trophy presentation. There was one comment from someone over there, ‘Let’s just get this over with.’ That’s so disrespectful to our girls. We showed up. We were here to play. I can’t imagine that’s what’s going on at the boys championship tonight – the game ends and they say, ‘Let’s just get this over with,’ hand a trophy out and walk out of the gym. To me that was hurtful to our girls. Pennsbury can play whoever they want to, that’s their decision, but from that side of things to just have the game end the way it ended and say, ‘OK let’s get out of here,’ to me, I found that very disrespectful to our girls.

“To me, that was the most hurtful thing tonight. Not Pennsbury’s side of things, the Suburban One side of things saying, ‘Let’s just get this thing over with’ and let everybody walk out of the gym and the presentation – the presentation is being made and 90 percent of the gym is just walking out of the gym. There was no script, no anything, it’s the way girls sports are treated and it’s incredibly disrespectful and it’s year after year. It’s 2022. It’s year after year at so many different levels. To me the only way it gets fixed is legally. To me, it’s time for legal action to get equality in girls sports.

“You look at these girls and this team and everything they’ve been through – losing the state tournament to COVID in 2020 and then last year only getting to play 16 games because no one would play us and we couldn’t get games. Now this year you make it to the Suburban One championship and the other team doesn’t want to play – OK – but the Suburban One just says, ‘Let’s get this over with and get out of here.'”

Plymouth Whitemarsh 52, Pennsbury 15

Pennsbury 0 7 6 2 – 15

Plymouth Whitemarsh 23 15 9 5 – 52

P: Foote 0 0-0 0, Sherman 1 0-0 2, MacDonald 3 1-2 10, Gilchrist 0 0-0 0, Jordan 0 0-0 0, Davis 1 1-1 3, Ruta 0 0-0 0. Total 5 2-3 15.

PW: Flanagan 0 0-0 0, Daley 3 2-2 9, Sharpe 7 0-0 14, Allen 7 0-0 14, Thomas 6 0-0 14, F Gooneratne 0 0-0 0, Balcer 0 0-0 0, O’Hara 0 0-0 0, R Gooneratne 1 0-0 3. Total 23 2-2 52.

3-point goals: P: MacDonald 3. PW: Thomas 2, Daley, R Gooneratne.

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