The Sankofa Freedom boys’ basketball team made program history on Monday.
With a 66-49 victory over Lourdes Regional in the semifinals of the PIAA Class 1A playoffs at Bethlehem Freedom High, the Warriors made the state championship for the first time ever.
“It’s a special time for us all across the board,” Sankofa coach Isaiah Thomas said. “I’m excited for the children and the parents, it’s an amazing feeling. We’re not content, but we’re in a great space right now.”
Next up for Sankofa is Vincentian Academy on Thursday at 2 p.m. at the Giant Center in Hershey.
The Warriors trailed after the first quarter, 21-16, but they went on a 15-0 run to close out the first half and gain a 37-28 lead.
Thomas said defensive pressure by Kobe Devine and Khalil Turner led to easy buckets. Derrius Ward recorded a team-high 23 points and Scott Spann scored 16. Turner added 11 points and Devine had 10.
Thomas said his squad’s selfless style of basketball has led to their success this season, and it could end with a championship on Thursday.
“My saying throughout my coaching career has always been, ‘Want for your brother, what you would want for yourself,'” Thomas said. “That’s been our theme all year. The overall team goal is to win, we don’t care about the stats and its been happening that way.”
Elijah Taylor scored 18 points as Imhotep Charter rolled past Hickory, 65-46, in the semifinals of the PIAA Class 4A playoffs. The Panthers will look for a third straight state title when they play Bonner-Prendergast on Thursday at the Giant Center.
Xavier recruit Dahmir Bishop contributed 12 points, and Jamil Riggins and Chereef Knox added 10 apiece. Imhotep was without Donta Scott, who was ejected for throwing an elbow in the quarterfinals game against Bishop McDevitt-Harrisburg.
The championship against the Friars will be a rematch of the District 12 Class 4A championship. Bonner-Prendergast beat the Panthers, 59-57, in overtime in the game.
Despite that loss, Imhotep coach Andre Noble isn’t looking to seek revenge against the Friars.
“Whoever is there on Thursday we’re happy that we’re there,” Noble said. “We don’t have that individual goal about any team, our goal is to win a state championship, and whoever that is we’re going to work hard and be ready on Thursday.”
Jaylen Stinson scored 17 points and Rahsool Diggins added 15 to lead Archbishop Wood past Abington Heights, 63-53, in the semifinals of the PIAA Class 5A semifinals.
Daeshon Shepherd tallied 13 points and Julius Phillips netted 10.
The Vikings will play Moon in the finals on Friday at the Giant Center at 8 p.m.
Upper Dublin held a lead late in the fourth quarter, but the Cardinals couldn’t hold on as they lost to Peters Township, 51-46, in overtime in the semifinals of the PIAA Class 6A playoffs.