Blue Devils make noise in tip-off

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot

It didn’t take long for the Greencastle-Antrim High School basketball teams to summon up some exciting play as the season began Friday.

The Blue Devil varsity boys’ team staged an incredible comeback to stake a claim at the top in the Franklin County Tip-Off Tournament. G-A overcame a 14-point deficit at the half to conquer Chambersburg 68-65 in the championship game. That came after a 70-38 lopsided win over James Buchanan on the opening night of the event.

Meanwhile the G-A girls’ team also delivered a solid punch over the rival Rockets with a 60-34 victory in the opening round. That drew a championship game date with Chambersburg. The Blue Devils forced overtime, but fell short of the Lady Trojans, 46-41.

Boys win title

Chambersburg was seemingly in control of the title game Saturday in the James Buchanan gymnasium, going up 18-11 in the first quarter and taking the halftime break with a 36-22 lead on the strength of a pressure defense.  The Blue Devils were undaunted in the second half and at one point went on a 23-1 run. The effort finally got G-A the lead. Scoring 34 points in the fourth quarter equaled what went in the first three put together.

Zach Faulkner topped the leaderboard with 23 points. Denver (15) and Denton (11) also each put in double digits. Denver Cordell was named the tournament MVP and along with Faulkner was named to the all-tournament team.

G-A just gained momentum from the opening tip against Buchanan a night earlier in a game in which the Devils forced 22 turnovers. After forging a 33-21 lead at the half, the Devils outdid the Rockets 20-5 in the third to close the door early and punch its ticket for the title game with Chambersburg, which had defeated Waynesboro.

Denver Cordell led the scoring with 21 points. Corey Meyers went double figures with 12 and Denton Cordell put in 10.

Girls are runners-up

G-A’s girls’ team also revved it up as the opening game went on, posting a 32-14 advantage at the half and closed with a 26-point spread to earn a spot in the championship game against Chambersburg. Lauren Grove and Tache Smothers each put in 13 points for the Devils, with nine each from Jenna Crunkleton and Miranda Sharp. Rachel Kline was high on the boards with seven rebounds. Sharp and Katie Gelsinger each pulled six. Smothers accounted for five steals in the game.

The Blue Devils also made their title game an exciting one that was forced into overtime when Chloe Hoover laced up a three-pointer with under 10 seconds to play. G-A trailed 37-30 going into the fourth quarter, but turned up the heat on defense that limited the Lady Trojans to two points in the final 10 minutes of regulation. Chambersburg found a way, however, and won the overtime 7-2 for the eight-point win.

Again G-A put three in double figures, led by 12 from Hoover. Grove and Smothers each inserted 10.