By Joseph Santoliquito
Philadelphia, PA (CBS) —Vicky Tumasz thought she was going to have some problems. The North Penn senior’s depth perception was slightly off, making only a few shots during pre-game warm-ups Friday night at Villanova’s Pavilion.
Tumasz’ troubles didn’t last long.
She dipped her shoulder, looked as if she would drive the lane, and suddenly stopped. The Spring-Ford defender guarding her fell backward. Tumasz needed only a second to rear back and land another three-point shot.
So it seemed to go the whole night for Tumasz, who scored a career-best 27 points in leading North Penn to a 63-51 victory over two-time defending District 1 Class AAAA champ Spring-Ford to win the District 1 title.
It marked the first time North Penn ever won a District 1 Class AAAA championship in girls basketball—and it marked the first in revered Maidens’ coach Maggie DeMarteleire’s long career.
It was program history the Maidens, the No. 3 seed in the district, were very aware of.
“We knew what we were playing for,” said the Shippensburg-bound Tumasz, a trickle of blood dripping down the back of her right ear from being scratched during the game. “We faced [Spring-Ford] two years ago and that was much more intimidating than tonight was. Everything tonight seemed easy for me. I got a feeling everything was going to go in, which is something I didn’t feel before the game. I think I made maybe two or three shots in warm-ups.”
The teams exchanged leads three times, before North Penn took the lead for good, 18-17, with 3:35 left in the first half on a Sam Carangi basket. That’s the closest Spring-Ford would come the rest of the way. North Penn, thanks to Tumasz, went on a 9-0 tear in the second quarter to take control of the game.
Tumasz made sure that comfy cushion was maintained throughout the third quarter by scoring 11 of the Maidens’ 13 points in the quarter.
“Vicky played her tail off for us tonight,” DeMarteleire said. “But really, everyone did. It was different people that stepped up for us.”
With 4:54 to play, North Penn held a solid 51-37 lead. Spring-Ford got within 55-49 with 1:12 to play on a Shelby Mueller basket, but the Maidens chewed up the remaining time to stave off any late Spring-Ford rush.
It was Tumasz that clinched it making four-straight free throws in the end.
“No one really thought this was possible,” Tumasz said. “No one thought we could win our league and we did. Now it’s off to states.”
Joseph Santoliquito is a contributing sports blogger for CBS Philly.