Class 3A state girls basketball semifinal
Who: Seffner Christian (23-5) vs. Calvary Christian (21-4)
When/where: 2:30 p.m. Tuesday; the Lakeland Center
Admission: $10 per session; parking is $8 per day.
Coaches: Calvary Christian — Brooke Sibert (fourth season, 60-31); Seffner Christian — Greg Fawbush (19th season, 342-129).
Players to watch: Calvary Christian — G Carley Plentovich, So. (13.6 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 3.6 apg); G Savannah Plentovich, so. (17.4 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 3.4 apg); F Saje Schlatterer, Sr. (9.4 ppg, 5.1 rpg). Seffner Christian — G Sabrina Whiting, Sr. (16.3 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 3.7 apg); F Peyton Walker, Jr. (19.8 ppg, 9.1 rpg, 3.0 apg); G Ally Parimore, Jr. (9.9 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 2.1 apg)
Common opponents: Admiral Farragut — The Crusaders beat the Blue Jackets 65-29 on Dec. 9, while the Warriors won 72-30 (Feb. 11), 59-24 (Jan. 7) and 61-37 (Nov. 15). Osceola — Calvary Christian played Osceola in the Indian Rocks Christian preseason tournament, winning 63-21 on Nov. 9. The Crusaders also saw Osceola in tournament play, when they beat the Warriors 55-44 on Dec. 21 in their host tournament. Tampa Catholic — Calvary beat Tampa Catholic at home 63-47 on Dec. 19. Seffner Christian hosted the Crusaders on Jan. 18, beating them 59-27.
Head to head: The teams met Jan. 23 at Calvary, with Seffner Christian winning 67-62. Whiting and Walker each scored 17 points for the Crusaders. Carley Plentovich scored 25 to lead the Warriors, who were ahead 60-43 after three quarters.
Calvary Christian quick hits: Senior guard Kasey Howard was lost for the season just before the district tournament. She was averaging 10.2 points per game. …This is the Warriors’ second straight state final four. Last season, in its first state appearance, Calvary lost 50-41 to Daytona Beach Father Lopez in the semis. …In five playoff games, including districts and regionals, the Warriors have beaten opponents by an average score of 60-26. …Schlatterer is a senior transfer from Northside Christian. …Sibert is the daughter of former Toledo football coach Tom Amstutz.
Seffner Christian quick hits: This is the Crusaders’ third final four appearance in four years. Last season, Seffner Christian beat Florida Air Academy 79-51 in the region final, then lost 60-51 to Miami Country Day in the state semis. In 2011, Seffner Christian beat Orlando Christian Prep 57-55 in the region final before losing 72-55 to Trinity Christian in the semifinal. Seffner Christian will be on the hunt for its first state title. …Whiting has played on all three of the Crusaders’ final four teams. As a freshman in 2011, she averaged 15.3 points, and last year as a junior she averaged 13.5. …Whiting shoots nearly 40 percent from long range, averaging two 3-pointers per contest. She had five in the Crusaders’ region final win against Mount Dora Bible.
“We’re not looking forward or backward. We’re only looking at this game and what we have to do. They are a very well-rounded team and we are a well-rounded team. That’s why we’re both here. Our goal is to play as hard as we can from the first minute to the last minute.” — Sibert
“If we play our game, we’ll always be ready. We just need to be prepared, and we can’t get scared. Last year, I felt like we were definitely all scared, and you can’t have a whole team that’s scared and expect to win. We need to go in this game with the courage and knowing that we can win this.” — Walker