Norwin’s playoff run ends in overtime against undefeated Cedar Cliff

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Monday, March 20, 2023 | 10:07 PM


ALTOONANorwin saw its run to the PIAA Class 6A championship game end Monday night at Altoona’s Field House.

Undefeated Cedar Cliff, the District 3 champions, needed overtime to advance to its first championship game, outscoring the Knights 8-0 in the extra period for a 55-47 victory.

Cedar Cliff (30-0) will play Archbishop Carroll at 6 p.m. Friday at the Giant Center in Hershey.

A couple of lucky bounces in overtime that went in their direction helped the Colts survive a scare from the Knights (24-5).

Taylor Ferraro picked up a loose ball that bounced her way and drained a 3-pointer to give the Colts the lead for good, 50-47, with 2:34 left.

“I knew Norwin was good,” Cedar Cliff coach Scott Weyant said. “But so are we. These seniors did not want the season to end here. I knew we’d fight back.”

Norwin had trouble getting shots to fall and Cedar Cliff had trouble making free throws. But somehow, most times they missed, the ball bounced into their hands.

“We’re active on the glass,” Weyant said. “For us to be successful, we have to rebound at the both ends of the floor.”

Cedar Cliff led 14-7 after one quarter and led 16-7 early in the second quarter. But Norwin roared back behind junior Laurel Palangio, who scored 10 of her game-high 20 points in the first half, to take a 22-20 lead at halftime.

“We had a variety of ways that we wanted to attack and feel them out in the first quarter,” Norwin coach Brian Brozeski said. “We wanted to see what would be effective for us. It’s something I’ll look at the film and see if I could have put them in a better position.”

Norwin pushed its lead to 32-26 midway through the third quarter, but a late run and a 3-pointer by Sydney Weyant at the buzzer gave Cedar Cliff a 38-36 lead.

The final quarter went back and forth with the teams exchanging leads.

“The game has ebbs and flows,” Brozeski said. “We were able to attack them and get to the line. It was a good job of our kids being disciplined and them to get them up in the air.”

Norwin took a 46-45 lead on a runner by Kendall Berger with 1:26 left, but Cedar Cliff reclaimed the lead, 47-46, on a bucket by Kathryn Sansom with 52 seconds left.

Palangio then tied the score with a free throw with 39.8 seconds left.

Both teams had shots for the win, but neither fell, sending the game into overtime.

“Any time you lose in overtime in this caliber of game, it’s tough,” Brozeski said.

Olivia Jones led Cedar Cliff with 19 points and 14 rebounds. She scored 10 points in the third quarter to rally the Colts.

Alexis Buie had 12 points, including two big free throws in overtime, and Ferraro had 10.

Berger scored 11 for the Knights, which will return four of five starters next year.

Paul Schofield is a TribLive reporter covering high school and college sports and local golf. He joined the Trib in 1995 after spending 15 years at the Daily Courier in Connellsville, where he served as sports editor for 14 years. He can be reached at pschofield@triblive.com.

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