AUGUSTA — A lot of things happened to make the Western Class D girls’ basketball quarterfinal between second-seeded Rangeley and seventh-seeded Greater Portland Christian closer than expected Monday.

Rangeley has been dealing with illness — probably why it looked lethargic early. Greater Portland Christian also is a much different team than the one that lost to Rangeley by 38 points two months ago.

The rematch was closer, but Rangeley was still too strong, too tall and too talented. The Lakers wore Greater Portland Christian down and advanced with a 65-43 victory at the Augusta Civic Center.

Chantal Carrier scored 20 points, and Emily Carrier and Taylor Esty (16 rebounds) each had 16 points for Rangeley (17-2), which will play sixth-seeded Vinalhaven at 10 a.m. Thursday in the semifinals.

Rangeley beat the Lions 62-24 in December. This time the Lakers weren’t at full strength.

“More than half of our team has not been in practice the last week due to the flu,” Rangeley Coach Heidi Deery said.

The Lakers led 18-12 after one quarter, and even though the Lions shot 1 of 13 from the floor in the second, Rangeley’s lead was just 32-20 at halftime.

“I don’t think we thought for one second it was going to be easy,” Deery said. “I think we have young kids, and I think we needed to come down and settle in. I was not happy with our defense at all, but I also know that we can play defense with much more intensity.”

Greater Portland Christian (8-10) stayed close in the first half behind Suzanne Gonzalez (12 points, 13 rebounds), but didn’t have enough height to stay with Rangeley on the boards.

Trailing 51-33 at the start of the fourth quarter, the Lions scored six straight points led by Elaine Beech (15 points). The Lions put on a full-court press that forced some turnovers, but they didn’t get closer than 12 points.

“We knew if we went to our press we were going to get tired quickly,” Coach Keith Dawson said. “My starters were tired when we went to it at that point but I just said, ‘Guys, we’ve got eight minutes left. We’ve just got to try it.’ I think if we started it earlier, we would have been exhausted in the fourth quarter.”

Matt DiFilippo — 861-9243
[email protected]

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