By Rob Potter
LOCH SHELDRAKE What a difference one quarter of play can make.
Following what was surely an inspiring halftime speech from Coach Becky Ahart, the Roscoe Lady Blue Devils emerged from the locker room a different team in Wednesday evenings Section IX Class D semifinal at Sullivan Community College.
Roscoe (18-3) found its offensive flow and turned up its defense a notch in those eight minutes of play. As a result, the Lady Blue Devils expanded a 15-11 halftime lead over S.S. Seward into a more comfortable 32-16 advantage heading into the final quarter.
That enabled top-seeded Roscoe to record a 49-27 win over fourth-seeded Seward (4-16). As a result, the Lady Blue Devils will meet second-seeded John A. Coleman Catholic tomorrow afternoon at West Point in the Class D title game.
In the first period, however, both the Lady Blue Devils and Lady Spartans struggled offensively. The teams combined for only nine points in those eight minutes and committed numerous turnovers.
In fact, the only points Roscoe could muster in the first quarter were a pair of free throws by forward Cheyenne Smith with 5:35 left in the stanza and a basket by center Rosie Miesner four minutes later.
That was an absolutely horrible first half, Becky Ahart said.
But Roscoe certainly played better in the second half.
Behind the scoring of Miesner and senior forward Staci Fersch, the Lady Blue Devils began the third quarter with a 10-0 run to boost their lead to 25-11 with 5:05 left in the period. And after Sewards Theresa Space made a free throw 20 seconds later to stop the Roscoe run, Lady Blue Devil point guard Kelly Ahart responded with a three-pointer to make it a 28-12 game.
In the third quarter, we played a little more like a Roscoe team, Becky Ahart said. We got into an uptempo flow the way we like it rather than the tempo they prefer. We made good passes and knocked down open shots. And our defense was better in that quarter.
Kelly Ahart led all scorers with 19 points, 12 of which came from four successful three-point shots. Miesner finished with 10 points and Fersch and Smith each netted eight points on the evening.
They really started hitting some of their shots in the third quarter, Seward Coach Chris Knittel said. Theyre a heck of a team and they shoot the ball well. They got us down by 10 or 12 points there and it was tough to come back.
My hats off to them and I wish them the best of luck down at West Point, Knittel added.
Space finished with seven points and Kelly Wallace added six for the Lady Spartans.