They’ve won 18 in a row and appear headed for the No. 1 seed in the District 2 Class 3A playoffs, but ask any of the Dunmore Lady Bucks and they will tell you the job is far from finished.
“That’s not really what we think about,” said sophomore forward Gianna Delfino, who scored 14 and had a team-high seven rebounds in Tuesday’s 58-44 win over No. 3-ranked Holy Cross.
“We think about what our next opponent is, what we have to do to get that done, to get a win.
“I’m not really paying attention to the score. I’m more concentrating on how we are doing, trying to get the best pass to the basket. The score is important, but we try not to focus too much on the score.”
For Dunmore, it’s like being on the schoolyard and asking, “Who’s got next?”
That would be Riverside, led by Division I recruit and 1,500-point scorer Lizzy Spindler, at Riverside on Thursday night. The Lady Vikes stumbled against Mid Valley last week, but after whipping Holy Cross, 75-61, surely must believe they have the tools to knock off Dunmore.
It’s one of three straight top-10 opponents for Dunmore to close league play.
After that comes Mid Valley on Monday, another road game, and one that will be televised on WQMY.
“They’re really good teams and they’re going to be really tough to beat,” Delfino said. “We have to be ready for them.”
And Lakelandat home gave Dunmore all it could handle in their first meeting. That’s the regular-season finale next Wednesday, and Senior Night.
Tough challenges all, but Dunmore looks like a team beginning to peak.
Senior Erika Bistran hit her first four shots — two 3s — to help the team build a 15-point first-half lead.
“I’ve been shooting on my own, too,” Bistran said. “Coach (Ben) O’Brien always says, if you can get out, shoot on your own, not only in practice where you’re going to get all your repetitions and everything.
“I’ve been going out and pushing myself, being hard on myself to be better.”
Dunmore’s starters shot 21 for 37 against Holy Cross and 50 percent from 3-point range.
“When you get to this point in the season, it’s important to have all your guys feeling confident offensively,” O’Brien said. “I think we have that right now that on any given night, we have a bunch of guys that can hurt you.”
Four Dunmore starters — Delfino, Bistran, Maddie Martin (15) and Lisa Tallo (11) were in double figures Tuesday.
“We made some big plays and I thought we really shared the ball,” O’Brien said.
Seen this before
Holy Cross coach Barry Fitzgerald had to think he was sitting through an encore viewing of last week’s 74-68 loss to Lakeland — at least for the first quarter.
Dunmore made 9 of 13 shots in the opening eight minutes. Lakeland made 9 of 12 shots in its upset.
From way downtown
Just 32 seconds remained when one of the most impressive plays of the game occurred. Holy Cross’ Abby Anderson, a St. Francis (Brooklyn) recruit, dribbled across the timeline, and as Dunmore defenders took a step in her direction, she pulled up and launched a long 3 that drew nothing but net.
How long? Stepped it off after the game. Thirty feet. Thirty. Not a two-handed launch, a jumper. Let that one sink in for a while.
Long time coming
While Sarah Kaneski, Brianna Ruby, Chloe Pehanick and company were pulling out a 41-37 win at Valley View on Monday, West Scranton got the better of Wallenpaupack, 41-34.
That combination gave first-year head coach Corey Valvano and his Lady Trojans their first Lackawanna League title since 2005, and snapped Wallenpaupack’s four-year reign as Division II champs.