Lake Shore saw more than half its starting lineup, including its top two scorers, foul out before the Eagles ran out of time in a double-overtime thriller in the Class A Far West Regional.
Trailing most of regulation, Section V champion Pittsford Mendon outscored Lake Shore, 19-12, in the fourth quarter and then outlasted the Eagles for a 68-66 win to earn a trip to next weekend’s Final Four for the second time in three years.
Tashawni Cornfield, Lake Shore’s top scorer this season, fouled out in the waning seconds of regulation after scoring 13 points, and then her sister, Noelani, was lost late in the second overtime after putting up a game-high 27 points. Sophomore forward Lainey Scanlon also fouled out for Lake Shore.
The loss ended a fairy-tale run for Lake Shore, which had defeated Western New York powers Amherst and Williamsville South to get here.
“Obviously, that killed us. We’re a team that knew it couldn’t get into foul trouble,” Lake Shore coach Danielle Arnone said. “I don’t have a nice deep bench like Mendon has. Unfortunately, we fouled out and hurt ourselves.”
Pittsford Mendon freshman Danielle Strauf knocked down a 3-pointer in the final seconds of regulation to send it to the first overtime. She finished with 11 points.
Senior captain Ellie Mooney hit a number of big shots, finishing with a team-high 22 points, including a trio of 3-pointers.
“We beat a heck of a basketball team. Lake Shore is talented and athletic and had us out of our comfort zone all game,” Pittsford Mendon coach Todd Julien said. “A lot of credit to our kids. We just found a way to win. … Obviously, Danielle’s shot at the close of regulation was a pretty special shot for a freshman.”
The Vikings made eight 3-pointers, including three in the fourth quarter. Julien said Lake Shore’s athleticism forced them into relying on shooting outside the arc.
“I felt like that was what was open for us and we hit a lot of those,” Julien said.
Lake Shore led, 11-6, after the opening quarter, 22-17 at halftime and 41-34 after three quarters. Five consecutive points from Noelani Cornfield late in the third quarter pushed Lake Shore’s lead to 37-28, and the Eagles seemed to be in control.
“When they’re feeling it, they can let it fly,” Arnone said of her players.
But the Vikings went on a 13-1 run through the first five minutes of the fourth quarter to take a 47-42 lead, and it took a feverish Lake Shore comeback to send the game to the first extra session.
Pittsford Mendon went out in front 57-53 in the first overtime, but the Eagles would not bow, scoring six of the final eight points to send the game into a second extra session.
The Vikings controlled much of the second overtime, but a jumper by junior Sophie Snyder (13 points), who had looked to have suffered a game-ending knee injury in the second half, cut the Eagles’ deficit to 67-66.
Trailing 68-66 in the final seconds of the second overtime, Lake Shore turned the ball over.