On Friday Feb. 24, 2017, the Plymouth Whitemarsh Colonials advanced to the semifinals of the PIAA District 1, 6A boys’ basketball playoffs after defeating the Conestoga Pioneers, 44-29.
The atmosphere was electric for this quarterfinal matchup. The Plymouth Whitemarsh gym was filled to capacity. The student section caused the bleachers to shake as they jumped and chanted in unison.
Plymouth Whitemarsh was favored on their home floor, coming in as the second seed with a 21-4 overall record and a perfect 14-0 record in the Suburban One League.
Conestoga entered the game as the seventh seed but was not to be taken lightly with their record of 20-5 overall, 16-2 in the Central Athletic League, and winners of seven in a row.
The game was close early on as the 1st quarter ended with Plymouth Whitemarsh leading 12-11. After halftime, their lead rose to 24-13 after holding Conestoga to only 2 points in the 2nd quarter.
The Colonials dominated defensively thanks to Sophomore Center, Naheem McLeod. The 7 footer recorded 5 blocks, 8 rebounds, and forced the Pioneers into difficult and contested shots all night. He also added 7 points on the offensive end.
The home affected Conestoga’s offense as well. They taunted every Conestoga player by name at the free throw line.
Offensively Plymouth Whitemarsh was led by a pair of junior guards driving to the basket. Ahmad Williams led the team with 17 points and Ish Horn scored 11 points.
Despite McLeod’s presence in the paint, Conestoga’s leading scorer was senior forward Angus Mayock. The two battled down low for most of the night, but Mayock was able to score a team high 10 points.
The Colonials put the game away with 3:32 left in the 4th quarter when Horn threw down a dunk on a breakaway to extend the lead to 36-22 as the crowd erupted.
The final nail in the coffin came just over a minute later when McLeod had a huge dunk to make it 40-23. Moments later, the student section stormed the court as the Colonials punched their ticket to the semifinals.
Plymouth Whitemarsh’s semifinal against the three seed Abington Ghost will be held at Temple University’s Liacouras Center this Tues. Feb. 28 at 6 p.m.