Days after knocking off No. 4 Chestnut Ridge, the No. 5 Windber girls brought momentum and high hopes to the table at top-seeded Everett.

But the Warriors showed why they finished atop the District 5 Class AA rankings, opening up an early lead and fending off the Ramblers 44-33 on Friday at Everett.

“We got off to a real slow start and their pressure defense was really good,” Windber coach Paul Danel said. “They trapped us a lot and we had too many turnovers in the first half and that was tough to recover from.”

The Ramblers fell into an eight-point deficit after the opening quarter, but pulled within six by the break.

The Warriors responded with a 12-6 scoring advantage in the third quarter and played nearly even with the Ramblers the rest of the way.

Everett’s Andrea Layton had 18 points and Kayla Nove chipped in 12. Everett will face No. 2 Conemaugh Township on Thursday for the district title.

Windber got a team-high 11 points from Laura Deyarmin.

“I’m very proud of these girls,” Danel said. “We went through a lot of rough spots throughout the year. We only had eight girls on the roster, which makes it difficult to practice and drill. I can’t say enough about these girls and their character.”

The Ramblers will return seven of their eight players next season and Danel was happy to have had the chance to play postseason basketball.

“This was good for them for the playoff exposure,” he said. “It was good for them to get this experience under their belts. Next year could be a very positive year.”

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