District 3, Class 2A champion Linden Hall got off to a fast start, then pulled away late to end Sayre’s season with a 57-35 win Friday night in the opening round of the PIAA Class AA girls basketball playoffs at Conestoga Valley High School.
Linden Hall scored the first 13 points of the game, and the Lady Redskins lost senior Amber Merrill to a possible concussion, but Sayer senior Stephanie Klovekorn scored six points, and junior Emily Sutryk nailed a 3-pointer to close the gap to 15-9 after the first eight minutes.
Senior Camry Lane knocked down a 3-pointer, and then canned a pull-up jumper to pull the Lady Redskins within one point, at 15-14, but Linden Hall closed the first half with a 10-3 run to take a 25-17 lead into the intermission.
Annya Miller scored 11 of her 17 points for Linden Hall in the first half.
Linden Hall’s Drexel-bound Hetta Saatman scored 10 points in the third quarter to spearhead a 15-11 spurt that gave the Hall a 40-28 lead heading into the final eight minutes.
Sayre trailed 44-31 midway through the final stanza, but Linden Hall closed out the game with a 13-4 spurt to seal the victory.
Lane led Sayre with 13 points, seven rebounds, and five assists while Klovekorn and Sutryk, who drained a trio of 3-pointers, scored 10 points apiece. Sophomore Gabbi Randall hauled down eight rebounds and dished out three assists.
Saatman led Linden Hall with 18 points, and Anya Miller added 17 points.
“(Linden Hall) is a very solid team, but we gave them fits. We made them go, ‘woah, wait a minute, this team came to play,’” Sparduti said with a laugh. “I’m just really proud of how hard they played.
Sayre wraps up their 2018-19 campaign with a 20-8 record.
Linden Hall moves on to the quarterfinals. They will continue their pursuit of a state title Tuesday when they play Old Forge, after winning their first District 3 title last month.