By: Josh Yourish
It may be the day before Saint Patrick’s day, but for the team in green, the luck ran out. Saturday Deer Lakes (18-8) looked to continue their run through the PIAA playoffs against Sharon (23-4) at Slippery Rock University, but the Lancers second state playoff appearance was ended by the same school that halted their first back in 1985.
The Lancers often attempt to establish an inside presence, even winning their first state playoff game without making a single 3-pointer, but they had never been countered by the combination of size, skill, and foul trouble, that they did Saturday. The result; Deer Lakes had no answer for Sharon’s Ethan Porterfield, as the 6’8” IUP recruit went for 28 points and led the Tigers to their 68-42 win. Brad Perrotte led Deer Lakes with 17 points.
Porterfield started fast with ten first-quarter points, six of his ten came from beyond the arc. In fact, he outscored Deer Lakes on his own. The Lancer offense mustered just nine points, and the Tigers ended the quarter up 14-9.
Deer Lakes began to establish their footing in the second frame and aided by an important Jared Colton 3-pointer, they pulled to within just two points. However, Sharon closed the half on a 6-0 run and entered the break up 28-20. The momentum of that run seemed to carry to the second half as well. Sharon extended their lead and won the third quarter 15-9, but that wasn’t the only discrepancy on the scoreboard. Much to the dismay of the Lancer fans, Sharon was assessed just one team foul in the quarter.
The fourth quarter offered no relief for the Lancer defense. Sharon opened on a 10-1 run and coupled with both Lancers starting forwards, Jack Hollibaugh and Colin Kadlick fouling out, the Deer Lakes season was all but over early in the fourth quarter.
Though the outcome was decided, not a single Deer Lakes fan headed for the doors early, rather they remained to honor the senior class of Brad Perrotte, Jared Colton, and Colin Kadlick that was responsible for leading the most successful season in school history.