Top-seeded Perry overcame a double-digit first quarter deficit to beat No. 4 Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin in a Division II district semifinal at Lakeside High School on Monday, 48-44.
The Pirates, who will play No. 2 Gilmour in Thursday’s district championship game, trailed 16-5 after the first quarter.
“NDCL came out and played really well defensively,” Perry coach Roy Infalvi said. “They caused us to take some bad shots on top of us missing some shots that we probably normally make. They built a decent lead but I was real happy with how we handled the adversity of being down that big and things not going our way and then we finished the game well.”
Perry’s comeback started on the defensive end.
The Pirates limited the Lions to just two second quarter points and capitalized on the other end by draining a pair of 3-pointers to take a 19-18 lead at the break.
“In the second quarter, we came out and played a lot better defensively,” Infalvi said. “We didn’t necessarily change a ton of things. Early on, I don’t think our effort was bad, we were just a little sloppy with things we were doing. We kind of tightened some of our offensive sets up a little bit and got some better shots. Really what helped us on the defensive end was tightening down, especially in the second quarter.”
Perry benefitted in the second half from the play of Elle Infalvi and Madyson Hacking, who scored 25 of their combined 32 points in the final 16 minutes.
“Elle and Madyson ended up with 25 of our 29 second-half points,” Coach Infalvi said. “They both hit some big shots at some big times and really kind of came through for us. It was a crazy game. We haven’t started that bad early in games but we didn’t panic so I was happy to see that.”
Infalvi led the Pirates with 18 points while Hacking finished with 14. Makenzie Hacking contributed with eight points, Anna Sorine added four and Sydney Moon and Jac’ana Anderson finished with three and one, respectively.
Emma Liberatore scored a game-high 27 for NDCL.
Perry will play in a third straight district championship game and a second straight against the Lancers, who defeated Geneva, 66-40, in Monday’s other semifinal.
The Lancers ended Perry’s season last winter, 57-32.
“They’re very talented and have good guard play,” Infalvi said of Gilmour. “Their post is really, really good and physical and they have a couple of other girls that play inside that are athletic and long and do some good things. We have our work cut out for us but we’ll be ready. Our girls are looking forward to it.”
Video via The News-Herald.