Beyond the Arc with Kate Harman: Wood takes care of business, begins three-peat journey

Wood takes care of business, begins three-peat journey

By: Kate Harman

Before Saturday afternoon, Katie May had played in 15 PIAA state tournament games.

Five her freshman year. Five her sophomore year. Five her junior year.

She’s only lost one.

The 14-1 record in March includes two Archbishop Wood girls’ basketball state championships and one season where the team was the state runner-up.

Go ahead and make it 15-1.

May and the Vikings continued their quest for a third straight title at Archbishop Ryan, defeating Springfield (D), 46-25.

 “Since it is senior year I do feel like every game is more special,” May said. “I want to win – obviously I wanted to win all four of my years – but I really want to win this year and so do the other seniors. We are just trying to not take any moment for granted.”

The Vikings (18-7) jumped out to a 13-1 start over the Cougars (21-8) but the margin shrank to just eight at halftime, as the foul-ridden game provided little flow for either offense.

But in the second half Wood stepped up, using its been there, done that – business as usual – attitude to throw off a team that has only appeared in two other state playoff games in the span of May’s career.

“I think that for them it seemed like the biggest game they’ve ever played,” May, a Northeastern recruit, said. “It’s not like that for us. I feel like that’s our advantage. We are more composed and it seems like that throughout all of states.”

Led by May and fellow senior Bridget Arcidiacono, the Vikings looked poised for all 32 minutes, as they ran through their sets and didn’t lose focus when shots didn’t fall.

But it was the stifling defense that really did Springfield (D) in, with Wood forcing turnovers, dominating the boards, and causing the Cougars to get poor looks at the basket, as the height and length of the Vikings posed significant problems.

“Our pressure kind of flustered them,” Arcidiacono, who netted 13 points, said. “And then we threw a 1-3-1 at them for a little and that really threw them off.”

The tournament continues on Wednesday, when the Vikings face off against Twin Valley in the second round.

“It’s hard to live up to this every year and we don’t want to take anything for granted,” Arcidiacono said. “We try to work hard every day and get back to where we were last year.”

Last year, Wood ended up hoisting the trophy in Hershey. The squad did the same thing the year before that, too.

Only four games to go.

May would really like to finish her career 19-1.

@Ka_Harman

KateRHarman@gmail.com

Springfield (D) 4 77 5 9 – 25

Archbishop Wood 13 6 19 8 – 46

SD: Alyssa Long 6, Alexa Abbonizio 5, Jordan D’Ambrosio 4, Belle Mastropietro 4, Rachel Conran 4, Carli Johnson 2

AW: Bridget Arcidiacono 13, Katie May 9, Kaitlyn Orihel 7, Lindsay Tretter 7, Ryleigh Parsons 5, Annie Whalen 3, Nicole Greenberg 2