Caroline Smith scored 20 points Tuesday to lead third-seeded Freeport to a 49-37 win over Mountain Valley in the Class B South girls’ basketball quarterfinals at the Portland Expo.

Freeport meets Cape Elizabeth at 1 p.m. Thursday in the semifinals at Cross Insurance Arena.

“We were a little bit nervous early on the big floor,” said Freeport’s first year coach, Seth Farrington after his team made just 4-of-15 first-quarter shots and held a slim 9-7 lead.

“We competed well. But we are sick and injured. Our starting five played limited minutes. We had a player like Catriona Gould, who had a 100-and-something degree temperature last night, but played some big minutes. Cat and many others played big-time today.”

Sixth-seeded Mountain Valley also struggled in the opening eight minutes, going 3 of 15 from the floor, with sophomore Rylee Sevigny picking up five of those points.

Freeport pulled away in the second quarter, scoring 22 points for a 31-16 halftime lead.

Freeport owned the paint, with Rachel Wall putting in 12 first-half points and grabbing six rebounds, and Smith leading all scorers with 13 points, 10 in the second quarter.

“We had a heck of a second quarter,” said Farrington, whose team made 10 of 16 field goals.

“We knew going in that anything is possible, so we wanted to go out and play our game, just do the best that we could,” said Wall, who had 18 points and 11 rebounds. “We knew that we needed to get a lead then extend it in the second quarter. We stepped it up and felt that energy that we needed.”

Mountain Valley began the third quarter with a full-court press as Coach Craig Milledge continually changed his team’s defensive looks in the quarter for an 11-6 edge.

“We tried to do a number of things to mess with their rhythm, but good teams seem to find it no matter what the defense does and they did,” said Milledge. “We came down expecting to win. I don’t want my girls to just be content to be on this floor.”

Saydie Garbarini’s free throw drew Mountain Valley to within eight points, 41-33, with 4:31 remaining, but Smith took over for Freeport. She made a free throw, then stole the ball from Sevigny and passed to Wall for two points and a 44-33 advantage. Another Smith bucket made it a 13-point lead, and moments later she teamed up with Gould for a steal, with Gould putting in the uncontested layup.

“Those steals showed us that if we work as a team, we are good. We really wanted this game,” Wall said.

“I am proud of us. Our shots just weren’t falling tonight, and Freeport played a heck of a game,” said Sevigny, who led Mountain Valley with 20 points.


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