The Waynesboro Indians varsity basketball team finished the regular season with a 17-4 record that included a share of the Mid-Penn Colonial Division championship with Shippensburg.
Waynesboro’s 60-50 victory over the Greyhounds gave the Tribe a 13-1 league record and a banner in the Waynesboro Area Senior High School gymnasium.
The following Tuesday, head coach Tom Hoffman’s squad followed up with a 58-45 win at Mechanicsburg.
And, on Thursday, Mid-Penn Commonwealth Division opponent Carlisle came into Waynesboro and surprised Waynesboro with a 68-53 triumph.
The Thundering Herd, which played three of the top six rated District 3-6A teams (Cumberland Valley, Central Dauphin and Chambersburg) twice this season, won five of their final eight games of the season.
“Carlisle played very well and shot the ball extremely well,” Hoffman said. “I truly believe their record is deceiving. They faced a lot of adversity early in the year and probably lost a few they shouldn’t have. Lately they have been playing at a high level to close out the season which is a credit to them and Coach Anderson.”
Carlisle led the game 20-19 after the first quarter and 42-39 at the half.
The Herd put some distance between the teams when they outpointed the Indians 13-5 in the third quarter.
“No excuses but we are a little battered and bruised right now,” Hoffman said. “We are facing some illness, sprains, etc. We need to get healthy and regroup, which I am confident we will do.”
Reese Cover and Jaylon Bean combined for 31 of Waynesboro’s points, with Cover leading the team with 17 points.
“Our group of young men still have some goals and dreams to accomplish and now we look to prepare for February 22.”
The Indians, used to a fast start against teams, played to a 16-16 tie after the first quarter with Mechanicsburg. Waynesboro held a 26-25 lead at halftime on the road.
But the wheels started turning in the second half, as the Tribe outscored the Wildcats 21-7 in the third quarter. Mechanicsburg gained just two points in the final stanza to seal a double-digit setback.
Cover paced Waynesboro’s offense with 19 points. Shaffer scored 11 points and Bean had 10 points. Shaffer made it a double-double when he pulled down 12 rebounds, including nine on the defensive end of the floor. He also had three assists and two steals.
Waynesboro won’t play again until Tuesday, Feb. 22 when the PIAA District 3 playoffs begin. The top 12 Class 6A teams qualify, with the top four teams receiving byes into the quarterfinal round.
The Indians are ranked eighth in the current power rating. The final day for games to count is Saturday, Feb. 12.
If the rankings remain unchanged, Waynesboro will host ninth-ranked Wilson (14-7) at 7 p.m. on Feb. 22.