READING HIGH GRINDS OUT THE DISTRICT THREE 6A TITLE
Written by: Bruce Badgley on Sunday, March 4th, 2018
Reading High marched through Dallastown and Manheim Township to make it to the District Three 6A title game. In there way stood a solid, veteran, battle tested Chambersburg Trojan squad. Chambersburg led the game after one. Reading High turned up the defensive pressure, pulled out to a lead and had to hang on to a 46-43 triumph and the District Three 6A crown Saturday afternoon in Hershey.
Ricki Lopez led the way for the Red Knights with 10. Ricki had a key basket and free throws down the stretch to preserve the win. Xavier Starks contributed 9 “The House” Joel Torres had a game high 15 to lead the Trojans.
Clearly both teams came out tight to start. Some tough shooting and untimely turnovers by both squads kept the score down to Trojans 10 Reading 9 after one. Reading cranked up the defensive pressure in quarter two. The Red Knights forced numerous turnovers and held Chambersburg without a field goal. Reading held a 19-12 halftime lead.
Reading’s offense finally began to click after halftime. The Red Knights pulled in front by as much as 15 in the third quarter. Then the Trojans began to methodically chip away at the lead. A bucket by Readings Xavier Starks got the lead to 36-25 going to the fourth. Again in the fourth, Chambersburg slowly began to get back in the game. The Trojans were within 6 with 5:50 to play. Chambersburg kept up the charge, but Reading always seemed to have an answer. Then came a barrage of three’s by Chambersburg the Red Knights did not answer. It was a two point game with :32 left. Two key stops, a fast break bucket and free throws by Ricki Lopez got the lead to 46-40 with :16.1 left. Another three by Chambersburg’s Cade Brindle got it to 46-43 with :4.4 left. A foul, missed free throws, by Reading, foul by Reading and a missed bonus opportunity by Chambersburg all got crammed into the last four seconds. IN the end Reading came away with the District Three title 46-43.
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