Waterville firmly stamped itself as the favorite to capture the Class B North girls basketball title with an impressive 65-32 quarterfinal victory over No. 10 Ellsworth on Saturday.
The Panthers look to avenge their only loss against No. 3 Presque Isle in Wednesday’s 2 p.m. semifinal at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor. Waterville (18-1) has won 16 in a row since a 52-46 loss in Presque Isle on Dec. 14, including a 38-17 home victory over the Wildcats.
In the 3:30 p.m. semifinal, top seed Hermon (18-1) will try to beat No. 4 Old Town (14-5) for the third time this season. The Hawks won 62-53 and 50-44 in the regular-season meetings.
Hermon needed a 3-pointer from Charlotte Caron with four seconds left in regulation to force overtime against upset-minded No. 9 John Bapst of Bangor and then outscored the Crusaders 8-0 in the extra session to win 42-34.
Old Town advanced with a 44-34 victory over fifth seed Houlton.
The Waterville-Presque Isle game features two teams that each hit 10 3-pointers in the quarterfinals. Waterville’s Sadie Garling and Presque Isle’s Faith Sjoberg each popped in five 3-pointers.
The Panthers’ full-court pressure will be a challenge for Presque Isle, which struggled against Winslow’s pressure and went 7:42 without a basket in the second half.
Waterville forced 29 Ellsworth turnovers and was paced by Garling (19 points) and Maddie Martin (15 points, 7 rebounds, 2 blocked shots).
Sjoberg led PI with 17 points, Annalise Jandreau scored 11 points and Maggie Castonguay provided 10 points, 12 rebounds and five assists.
Old Town must shoot well and try to minimize the taller Hawks’ dominance in the paint, which hurt them in their regular-season meetings.
Five-foot-11 sophomore Meg Tracy averaged 17.5 points and 11.5 rebounds in the two games for Hermon and senior guard Paige Plissey averaged 11.5 points, eight rebounds, four steals and 2.5 assists.
Senior Grace Page posted 14 points, seven rebounds and five steals against John Bapst.
Old Town’s Hannah Richards scored 39 points in the two Hermon games but Maddie Emerson was held to 14. Emerson had a game-high 17 in the win over Houlton and Richards contributed 11.