Maranacook Coach Karen Magnusson used three timeouts in the first quarter, but nothing could stop top-seeded Gray-New Gloucester in Tuesday’s Class B South girls’ basketball quarterfinal.

The Patriots took a double-digit lead by the time Magnusson used her second timeout, and then got up by 20 in the second quarter on their way to a 61-27 victory at the Portland Expo.

“They’re athletic. They ran the floor tremendously well. They were the best transitioning team that we’ve played all year,” Magnusson said. “And for us, I mean, it’s hard I guess coming in playoffs on (the Class B South) side because we don’t play anybody.

“So everybody that we play, it’s the first time we’ve played them. But they’re definitely No. 1 for a reason.”

Gray-New Gloucester (17-2) scored the game’s first six points – four straight by Eliza Hotham before dishing to Jordan Grant on the third field goal – and forced Magnusson to use her first timeout three minutes into the game.

“You know, Eliza was a starter last year for us, and it was kind of a growing year for her a year ago,” Patriots Coach Mike Andreasen said. “And this year she’s just a much more confident young lady. And so to have her go out and just to get good results from the first time down was really big for her tonight.”

Gabrielle Green made a fallaway shot out of the timeout to get the ninth-seeded Black Bears (10-10) on the board, but the Patriots answered with an 8-0 run, including Bri Jordan’s four-point play that preceded Magnusson’s second timeout four minutes into the game.

“I mean, I had to call those. If not, those runs would have been a lot longer,” Magnusson said. “I don’t remember what it was at the first quarter, but it was just trying to keep the game close. But also just let the girls know we’re OK, and then just try to keep them focused on what we needed to do.”

The Patriots got up by as much as 18-4 in the opening period before Maranacook’s Anna Drillen hit a 3-pointer.

“Traditionally, this year we haven’t gotten off to good starts. We’ve been very close after a quarter, and when we do spurt it usually tends to be the second quarter,” Andreasen said.

Grace Despres opened the second with a layup for Maranacook, but the Patriots responded with a 13-3 run to end the period. Jordan added six points in the quarter to give her 10 in the first half.

“If Bri didn’t score a point for us she’d still be like ‘the player’ for us because everything else she does. When she’s scoring baskets too, boy – and it seems to be baskets at key times,” Andreasen said.

In the third quarter, Sam Fortin sandwiched a pair of field goals around a Jordan Grant layup to give the Patriots a 37-14 lead.

Magnusson then used her final timeout with 5:13 still left in the third. A buzzer-beating 3-pointer by Jordan to sent the game into the fourth with the Patriots up 46-19.

Drillen paced the Black Bears with seven points, and Despres added six.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.