HAZLET, NJ -  The tenth-seeded  Arthur L. Johnson High School Crusaders girls varsity basketball team took the 58-54 win in a close contest against the seventh-seeded Raritan High School Rockets  Tuesday afternoon in the start of their state tournament run.

The teams played through a close first quarter, with Raritan holding a 7-6 lead. The game remained close in the second quarter, with Raritan leading 23-21 at halftime, but Johnson would find a way to battle back in the second half.

The Crusaders outscored the Rockets 16-8 in the third quarter, taking a 37-31 lead heading into the fourth quarter. Johnson would hold on through the fourth quarter to come away with the victory.

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For Johnson, senior Tina Palella led her team with 17 points in the win. Senior Amy Wysocki added 13 points, while junior Bailey Rosenmeier added nine points.

The Johnson Crusaders (8-17) advance to the NJSIAA Central Jersey, Group 2 Quarterfinals. They will travel to play at No. 2 seeded Lincoln HS Thursday afternoon at 5:00 p.m.

The Raritan Rockets finish their 2017-18 season with a 14-13 record.