Late Spurt Helps A-C Valley Move into Second Round of PIAA Playoffs

| March 9, 2019

KNOX, Pa. (D9Sports) – Using a game-ending 6-1 spurt over the final three minutes, A-C Valley knocked off Cambridge Springs, 47-43, in the opening round of the PIAA Class 2A playoffs to gain the second-ever PIAA win in school history.

Relisten to the game:

(Photo: Kylee Eaton had a monster game with 20 points and 14 rebounds in A-C Valley’s win Friday night. Photo by Cynthia Cullen Rapp)

“For these guys it’s great,” A-C Valley head coach Dave Sherman said. “I told each one of them that it might not have worked out for us in the District championship (the Lady Falcons finished second to Kane, the second year in a row they were a D9 runner-up), but this is kind of like our championship. If you can win one of these games and get into the Sweet 16, that is something to brag about. There are a lot of kids sitting at home wishing they were in your shoes tonight. For these girls, the time and effort they put in, this is the payoff.”

After a third-quarter ending 11-2 run, A-C Valley (21-4) led by seven, 39-32, with eight minutes to play.

But Cambridge Springs (20-6), the third-place team out of District 10, battled back and took a 42-41 lead on a 3-pointer by Ashton Hoover with 4:51 to play.

But Hoover’s three was the last field goal the Blue Devils made.

Kylee Eaton tied the game at 42 on a free throw with 3:09 left and then gave the Lady Falcons the lead for good on a layup with 1:23 to play. Eaton, Cami McNany and Olivia Boocks then each hit a free throw in the final 34.9 seconds to help seal the win.

“They don’t ever pack it in,” Sherman said when asked about his team’s resilience after losing the seven-point lead. “There is no quit. I told them before the game that there is no team that I have seen that has more heart than they do. I don’t give rah-rah speeches beforehand, because I don’t need to. I know they are going to come out and play 100 percent full speed all the time. There is no give up, no quit ever.”

Eaton had a big game for A-C Valley with a game-high 20 points to go with 14 rebounds.

“Kylee was unstoppable tonight,” Boocks, the point guard said. “That girl couldn’t stop her and then she got into foul trouble and we knew we just had to get it to Kylee. We knew she was the same size (as Cambridge Springs’ post player. Kylee usually does well against girls who are the same size because she is a lot stronger than them.”

Boocks added 14 points for the Lady Falcons including eight in the third quarter to help A-C Valley take the lead.

“I’m so excited I don’t even know what to do, I’m shaking,” Boocks, who missed last year’s PIAA playoffs with an injury, said. “It is kind of my bounce-back year. It is really special.”

Watch all of Boocks’ postgame interview.

McNany also reached double figures for A-C Valley with 11 points.

Hoover had a team-high 13 points for Cambridge Springs with Julia Mailliard adding12, including four during the run to start the fourth quarter for the Blue Devils.

A-C Valley will take on WPIAL champion Our Lady of the Sacred Heart in the second round Tuesday, March 12, at a time and place to be announced. OLSH beat District 6 fourth-place finisher Blairsville, 63-43.

“We may as well give it a go,” Boocks said.


Score by Quarters

Cambridge Springs 13 11 8 11 – 43
A-C Valley 8 15 16 8 – 47


Rachel Swanson 2 0-0 6, Cori Schmidt 1 0-2 2, Julia Mailliard 4 4-6 12, Brooke Myers 1 0-0 3, Abby Wescott 3 1-2 7, Ashton Hoover 5 0-2 13, Kylee Dies 0 0-0 0. Totals 16 5-12 43.


Cami McNany 4 2-7 11, Olivia Boocks 4 3-4 14, Kylee Eaton 9 2-6 20, Rachel Cullen 0 0-1 0, Andrea Meals 1 0-0 2, Emily Wetzel 0 0-0 0. Totals 18 7-18 47.

Three-pointers: Cambridge Springs 6 (Hoover 3, Swanson 2, Myers). A-C Valley 3 (Boocks 3, McNany).

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