Philly’s Saints go marching in to state finals with perfect record on the line

 A member of the Neumann-Goretti girls basketball team makes a 360-degree dunk shot at practice. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

A member of the Neumann-Goretti girls basketball team makes a 360-degree dunk shot at practice. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

The girls basketball team at Philadelphia’s Neumann-Goretti High School is now just one victory away from winning a state championship.

 

The Saints – the top-ranked team in the country – clobbered Holy Redeemer 77-41 during the squad’s semi-final matchup Tuesday night.

The team’s next and final test will likely be a bit harder.

Goretti will meet the Rebels of Seton-LaSalle High School (23-7) in Pittsburgh – the team that beat Goretti 58-50 in the same game last season.

“It’s going to be one of those games where both teams are looking to fast break, looking to get transition points,” said head coach Andrea Peterson. “So patience is going to be key, playing defense, defending the perimeter, because they have some really good shooters.”

Neumann-Goretti is 29-0 heading into Friday afternoon’s matchup in Hershey.

The team had the same record before last year’s fateful title game. It’s why this season’s motto is “unfinished business.”

A Goretti girls basketball team has never won a state-championship. It would be thrilling to change that, said Peterson.

“To get 30-0, potentially, in one season, win three championships and have the season they did, it’s history,” she said. “It would be history for these young women.”

The Saints won the Catholic League Championship and the City Championship before making their state playoff push.

Tip-off on Friday is set for noon inside the Giant Center.

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