MORRIS KNOLLS, NJ – The top-seeded Morristown girls’ varsity basketball team showed their resiliency in a back-and-forth game in which they trailed throughout most of the first half against No. 8 Hanover Park Hornets as they held on to win 50-45 at Morris Knolls High School on Saturday evening in the Morris County quarterfinals matchup.

Hanover Park started the game shooting hot and jumped out to a 9-5 lead thanks to eight unanswered points and had the reigning Morris County Champions on their heels early. The Hornets held a 14-9 lead after the first quarter. Despite being behind most of the second quarter, the Colonials jumped ahead thanks to two late back-to-back three-point shots from Nicole Ferrara and Morgan O’Neil, who combined for 15 points on the evening.

“This is what we’ve done all season – we found a way to win,” Morristown coach Jimmy Pisciotto said after the game. “We came back in this one and we survived and advanced. That’s what it’s about this time of year.”

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The second half featured eight different lead changes and Hanover Park led by one point with 2:28 left in the game.

“It took some time for us to get comfortable and into a rhythm this game,” Pisciotto added. “But we did a good job closing this one out.”

That changed when Kate Kolb drove into the lane and converted on a lay-up to give the Colonials a one-point lead with just under 90 seconds left in the game. Kolb had a game-high 18 points and added six rebounds on the stat sheet.

Once the Colonials took the lead, their full-court press defense locked down the win as they advanced to the semifinals.

Morristown (16-2) will take on the No. 5-seeded Jefferson Falcons (17-4) on Friday, February 16 as they look to keep their focus on repeating as champions in the Morris County Tournament.

“We played them at our place earlier this year and it was a war,” Pisciotto explained, recalling Morristown’s 44-37 win over the Falcons.

Jefferson has become somewhat of a familiar rival to the Colonials as they met in the county’s semifinals in 2016 and the championship in 2017. Morristown won both games respectively. 

 

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