Despite leading just 33-26 after three quarters against Bishop Neumann, the St. Cecilia girls basketball team looked to be in control of its first game in the Centennial Conference tournament.
But the Cavaliers quickly took that calm away when they opened the final quarter with back-to-back 3-pointers from sophomore Morgan Vasa to cut the deficit to one. STC head coach Jahn Kile's concerns came to life, knowing that Bishop Neumann was a much more improved team since that last time the two teams met back on Dec. 1, 2012, when the Hawkettes cruised to a 17-point win.
But that one point would be as close as the Cavaliers would get, as the Hawkettes survived the scare and closed out a 41-34 victory Tuesday night at Chapman Gymnasium.
The win sends top-seeded St. Cecilia to Lincoln Christian on Thursday, where they will face fifth-seeded Columbus Scotus (11-4) in the conference tournament semifinals at 6 p.m.
Kile said the tight victory over Bishop Neumann (9-8) will ultimately help the Hawkettes moving forward.
"It's nice to have games like this occasionally, where you have to fight for the win. We made some plays down the stretch to do that," said Kile, whose Class C-2 third-ranked Hawkettes improved to 12-4. "I didn't think we played our best ball, and to still find a way to win is always a good thing."