Lady Bucks Advance to Second Round in State Playoffs Before Shutdown 

Lady Bucks Ciera Toomey

Ciera Toomey, a freshman with the Dunmore Lady Bucks is shown in action. She has been named to the Lackawanna League Basketball Coaches first team all-stars. (Photo credit: Rich Banick Photography)

By Steve Svetovich

The Dunmore Lady Bucks were on a roll.

Only a national pandemic could stop them.

And then the season came to a quick halt.

The Lady Bucks, coached by the veteran Ben O’Brien, defeated Neumann-Goretti, 65-51, in the second round of the PIAA Class 3A girls basketball playoffs at Freedom High School in Bethlehem Tuesday, March 10.

Dunmore easily beat Constitution, 62-23, Friday, March 6, in the first round of the PIAA Class 3A girls basketball playoffs.

But the Coronavirus threat halted the end of the winter sports season and sent high school athletes home. A national shut down, which does not include “life essential ” workers, has been since extended to April 30. 

Social distancing is the mantra now to help thwart the spread of COVID-19, and keeps local athletes away from teammates. It’s simply keeping people away from each other. 

Businesses, schools, gyms, restaurants, sports arenas, concert venues, movie theatres, life as we know it, are shut down.

Dunmore sophomore Moriah Murray scored 23 points and added five assists in the win against Constitution. She hit four 3-pointers.

Dunmore freshman Ciera Toomey added 16 points, five rebounds and five assists.

Murray exploded for a career-high 33 points, including seven 3-pointers, in the second round win over Neumann-Goretti, 65-51, Tuesday, March 10, at Freedom High School in Bethlehem. She added six rebounds and three assists.

Toomey scored 22 points and added seven assists and five rebounds.

Elisa Delfino hauled down five rebounds. Anna Talutto and Alexis Chapman contributed three assists each. Mia Blume had two assists.

Murray and Toomey were both selected as Lackawanna League Coaches first team all- stars. Talutto and Blume were honorable mention.

Lady Bucks Moriah Murray

Moriah Murray, a sophomore, shown here on the court for the Lady Bucks basketball team, has been named to the first team all-stars by the Lackawanna League Basketball Coaches.

“It’s sad to see that our season could potentially be over,” Murray said to The Dunmorean. “as we felt our team had more to accomplish.

“I’m proud of how our team came together and won a league and district title. I will be very sad if we can not finish our season for my teammates and especially for the seniors.”

Murray swished her first six 3-pointers, none shorter than 23-feet, against Neumann-Goretti. The sharp shooter hit on 10-of-15 shots in the win.

Pennsylvania Gatorade Player of the Year Diamond Johnson scored 35 points for Neumann-Goretti.

Dunmore had a 39-21 lead at one point, but Johnson helped lead a comeback. She scored 10 points in two and one-half minutes to cut Dunmote’s lead to eight points after three quarters.

However, Murray hit one of two foul shots after a technical, the scrappy Anna Talutto drove into the the paint and hit a soft 12-footer and Alexa Chapman finished a fast break on a Toomey nifty pass. Murray’s wing drive made it seven straight for Dunmore after the technical.

The Lady Bucks all of a sudden had a 56-43 lead with 3:42 left and did not look back.

Only the Coronavirus could stop this team.

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