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GIRLS: Catamounts advance to Wonderland semis

The Wonderland semifinals are set after Cary Panther Creek made a statement. The Catamounts defeated the Salisbury Hornets 71-63 in the opening round, setting up a Wednesday matchup with Cincinnati Purcell Marian at 5:30 p.m. while Salisbury faces Raleigh Millbrook at 1 p.m. Salisbury started the game on an 11-2 run, beginning with a Makayla Noble steal and layup with the punctuation being a Kyla Bryant 3-pointer. Panther Creek’s Taylor Barner exploded with 13 points in the opening quarter and Madisyn Jordan’s 3-pointer gave the Catamounts their first lead at 21-20 late in the frame.

The teams traded blows in the first half with neither getting separation as Panther Creek went ahead 33-31 at the break. In the third quarter, Panther Creek took over behind the three-headed attack of Barner, Jordan and Olivia Tucker. The Catamounts opened up a 12-point lead in the frame and went up 13 in the fourth quarter. Salisbury cut the lead to 65-59 after a Bryant 3-pointer, but the Hornets wouldn’t get closer. For Panther Creek, Barner had 28 points, five assists and two steals, Tucker added 17 points, four steals and four rebounds and Jordan had 16 points and three assists.

For Salisbury, Bryant had a game-high 29 points with five rebounds and three assists, while Noble added 22 points and four rebounds.

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