GROTON -- Friday night's Division 2 Central girls basketball quarterfinal was not for the faint of heart.

Groton-Dunstable led by five at the half, but the No. 6 Marlboro Panthers, behind a 16-point effort from senior Jill Petrie, escaped Groton-Dunstable Regional High School with a 50-48 double-overtime victory over the No. 2 Crusaders.

Groton-Dunstable had been victorious in the previous two meetings with Marlboro.

Petrie netted her 1,000th career point late in the second quarter on the front-end of a free-throw trip and the game was halted for a brief ceremony.

Senior forward Hanna Van Pelt converted a contested layup late in the fourth to tie the game at 36-36 and the defense held to push overtime.

Van Pelt led all scorers with a game-high 20 points and 9 rebounds in her final game in a Groton-Dunstable uniform.

"She definitely did not want it to be her last game," said G-D coach Mark Hennelly of Van Pelt.

"She fought hard and she has just been associated with everything in this program for all four years.

Her absence next year is going to be a tough one to replace. I wouldn't trade the experience for the world. She's a great kid and had a great career here."

Groton-Dunstable had a chance to put the game away in the final seconds of the first overtime, when Rachel Romich's last second shot rattled around the cylinder and popped out.

Hennelly was high on his team's competitive drive even in the practice gym -- it shined through Friday night.


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The Crusaders scrapped until the final whistle, when junior Ellie Eisenklam's shot missed its mark.

"It was a great season and I am proud of them," said Hennelly.

"It is disappointing -- the last one always is. They fought -- there were three or four times where it looked like they could be out of it, but they kept coming back."

Groton-Dunstable held a narrow 9-5 lead at the end of one behind a three-pointer from Hannah Wynn and a three-point play late in the quarter.

The Crusaders' largest lead of the first half came early in the second quarter as Van Pelt knocked down a pair of free throws.

Marlboro responded with five unanswered points from Sarah Popivchak and Shanahan.

Van Pelt halted the mini-run from the Panthers with a three-pointer in the corner.