By Matthew DeGeorge
Saturday afternoon, Penncrest’s boys basketball team will endure a long bus ride for a playoff game. It will play in front of a partisan crowd as marked underdogs.
For a team that feels it has been written off since before this season began, Saturday’s trip to Dallastown High to take on District Three champion William Penn York in the opening round of the PIAA Class AAAA Tournament has long since lost the feeling of novelty.
This is the sixth straight game the Lions (16-11) will play away from home this postseason. It’s the sixth straight time they will be underdogs, starting as the No. 28 seed in the District One tournament to finish as its 10th and final representative in states.
That unlikely journey entitles the Lions to a certain sense of accomplishment.
“We’re just trying to enjoy it,’ senior guard Mike Doyle said at practice Wednesday. “Our whole team is trying to enjoy the moment because it’s crazy that we’re here. Our wildest dreams wouldn’t have put us here. It’s an unbelievable feeling.’
The underdog mentality comes with a caveat. Penncrest certainly didn’t enter the postseason feeling like a 28 seed, thinking its 10-3 start was more indicative of its ability than a 3-6 finish. Traveling to inhospitable gyms like Penn Wood, Lower Merion and Academy Park became a proving ground for that assertion.