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Photo: Jake Danna Stevens, License: N/A, Created: 2019:02:23 18:50:48

JAKE DANNA STEVENS / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Abington’s Maria Tully scores against North Pocono at Marywood in Scranton.

Photo: Jake Danna Stevens, License: N/A, Created: 2019:02:23 19:09:19

JAKE DANNA STEVENS / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Abington’s Arla Davis takes a shot as North Pocono’s Alicia Goldenziel defends her shot at Marywood in Scranton.

The Abington Heights girls and boys basketball teams are back in the District 2 championship games.

Last Friday, George Tinsley scored a game-high 25 points and had 14 rebounds to lead the top-seeded Comets past Dallas, 59-51, in the Class 5A boys semifinals at Carbondale Area High School.

Abington Heights (22-2) will play second-seeded Crestwood (20-6) for the championship Friday at 8 p.m. at Mohegan Sun Arena.

It is the Comets’ ninth straight appearance in a district final.

Meanwhile, on Saturday, the Lady Comets pulled away at the free throw line over the final eight minutes to defeat North Pocono, 42-31, in the Class 5A girls semifinal at Marywood University. The top-seeded Lady Comets, winners of three straight District 2 crowns, will face Wyoming Valley West on Saturday at 6 p.m. at Mohegan Sun Arena.

Boys

Against Dallas in the semifinals, Trey Koehler scored six of his 17 points in the first quarter when the Comets built an 18-10 advantage.

In the second quarter, Tinsley hit three 3-pointers as the lead grew at 31-18.

Corey Perkins, who left the game in the second quarter with a leg injury, returned in the second half and scored four points as the Comets lead ballooned to 38-22.

However, the Mountaineers rallied to get within 49-44 with 3:24 left in the game.

However, Tinsley scored four points in the final 2:26, including a dunk in the final seconds to seal the Comets’ closest margin of victory in the district playoffs since 2015 when they defeated Hazleton Area, 51-45, in the District 2 Class 4A final.

Dallas (14-10) — J. Farrell 6-10 0-0 13, J. Finarelli 3-5 3-4 10, D. Schuster 4-7 0-0 9, S. Nocito 4-7 0-0 8, L. DelGaudio 2-6 0-0 4, A. Finarelli 2-8 0-0 4, N. Nocito 0-6 3-4 3, L. Evanosky 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 21-49 6-8 51.

Abington Heights (22-2) — G. Tinsley 9-18 4-5 25, T. Koehler 8-17 1-3 17, J. Nealon 3-7 0-0 8, C. Perkins 2-7 4-5 8, D. Nealon 0-1 1-3 1, M. Malone 0-0 0-2 0, H. Johnson 0-1 0-0 0. Totals: 22-51 10-18 59.

Dallas 10 8 13 20 — 51

Abington Heights 18 13 11 17 — 59

3-point shooting: DAL (Schuster 1-2, Farrell 1-4, J. Finarelli 1-2, N. Nocito 0-3), AH 5-18 (Tinsley 3-5, J. Nealon 2-6, Koehler 0-5, Perkins 0-1, D. Nealon 0-1). Rebounds: DAL 26 (Farrell, Schuster 6), AH 35 (Tinsley 14). Assists: DAL 4 (S. Nocito 4), AH 12 (Perkins, D. Nealon 4). Steals: DAL 4 (A. Finarelli 2), AH 9 (Koehler 4). Blocks: DAL 3 (DelGaudio 2), AH 3 (Tinsley, Koehler, Malone). Turnovers: DAL 12, AH 11.

Girls

Rachel McDonald hit a step-back, 3-pointer with one minute left in the third quarter to give the Lady Comets the lead for good in a game that was tied, 15-15, at halftime.

For quite a while, North Pocono was more physical and frustrated the Lady Comets. It hit rainbow 3s against a zone defense, necessitated when Erin Albright picked up a second foul early in the second quarter, and kept the Comets from attacking the rim, save Clair Marion, who scored seven of her 12 in a first half.

Marion’s steal and drive from three-quarter court tied the game at 19 with 2:25 left in the third.

Izzy Pehanick countered with a 15-footer for the Lady Trojans (14-10) for their final lead, but Albright was fouled driving to the bucket and hit two free throws to knot it again.

“I think we were nervous and scared in the first half,” said Albright, who also scored 12 and cleared a game-high nine rebounds. “After we calmed down, we became a whole different team. We became settled on offense and played more intense defense, got in the shooter’s face, and that really contributed.”

A turnover after Albright’s foul shots gave McDonald a wide-open look from the right wing, and she swished just her third shot of the game.

McDonald added two free throws for a 26-21 lead after three, and after Pehanick’s two foul shots cut the margin to three, Albright got free for a layup on an inbounds pass from Maria Tully, who on the next possession drove, spun and converted a three-point play.

From there, it was a march to the foul line as North Pocono had to chase and the Lady Comets went on an 8-2 spurt to push the lead to 38-25 with 2:45 to go.

North Pocono (14-10) — I. Pehanick 3-7 2-4 8, J. Montana 3-9 0-0 7, A. Goldenzeil 3-4 0-0 7, J. McDonough 3-9 0-0 7, M. Carney 1-2 0-0 2, B. Ruby 0-1 0-0 0, C. Colo 0-2 0-0 0, A. Balbach 0-0 0-0 0, M. Seidita 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 13-34 2-4 31.

Abington Heights (19-5) — C. Marion 4-12 3-5 12, E. Albright 3-4 6-6 12, R. McDonald 1-3 5-6 8, M. Tully 1-6 5-8 7, A. Scoblick 1-2 1-4 3, A. Davis 0-0 0-0 0, S. Henzes 0-1 0-0 0, A. Dammer 0-0 0-0 0, M. Kohanski 0-0 0-0 0, L. Lombardo 0-0 0-0 0, A. Murray 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 10-28 20-29 30.

North Pocono 5 10 6 10 — 31

Abington Heights 6 9 11 16 — 42

3-point shooting: NP 3-9 (Goldenzeil 1-1, McDonough 1-2, Montana 1-5, Ruby 0-1), AH 2-10 (McDonald 1-2, Marion 1-3, Henzes 0-1, Tully 0-4). Rebounds: NP 23 (McDonough 5), AH 20 (Albright 9). Assists: NP 7 (Ruby 3), AH 3 (Tully 2). Steals: NP 4 (Montana 2), AH 11 (Scoblick 4). Turnovers: NP 20, AH 10. Blocks: AH 3 (Marion 2).