HUMMELSTOWN — Josh Gardner made a coast-to-coast run and beat Shippensburg’s defense for a layup that gave Lower Dauphin a one-point edge with 28 seconds remaining.
The Falcons made that basket the game-winner by holding off the Greyhounds in the final seconds and won the District 3 Class 5A boys semifinal game at LD on Tuesday night, 59-57.
No. 2 seed Shippensburg finishes with a 16-3 record, and fell just short of hosting the district championship.
Lower Dauphin (18-3), the No. 3 seed, will host No. 4 Cocalico (16-4) on Thursday at 7 p.m. Cocalico nipped York Suburban 43-40 on a buzzer-beater 3-point shot.
The Hounds held their final lead at 57-56 when Jayden Statum was 1-for-2 at the foul line with 1:06 to go. Ship got the ball back on a turnover, but an attempted shot by Jeremy Thomas was blocked, Gardner got possession and took off on his length-of-the-court play to lift LD into a 58-57 lead.
After a Greyhound timeout, Statum found Anthony Thomas with a pass and as the defense swarmed to him, he flipped a pass underneath to Thomas, who made a nice ball fake and went up for a short shot. But the ball rolled across the rim, would not go down and Tyson Hoffass got the rebound for the Falcons and was fouled with 8 seconds left.
Hofsass made one free throw, but missed the second. Ship brought the ball up quickly and Lower Dauphin used up its final foul with 0:03 left. Statum got the ball on the in-bounds play, but had two defenders all over him and his heavily contested jumper at the buzzer hit the back of the rim.
Shippensburg led 15-11 after one period, but LD held a 28-26 lead at the half thanks to two late drives by Charlie Fortney.
Midway through the third quarter, the Falcons held a 36-32 lead, but then Statum took control. In a 10-0 Greyhound run, Statum scored 6 of them, first hitting a 3-pointer, then converting a three-point play on an in-bounds pass. Isaiah Houser scored on a fast break off an assist by Statum, then a missed Statum shot was followed in by Smith for a 42-36 lead with 2:45 left in the period.
In the fourth period, Smith made a layup off a pass from Statum at 3:35 to give the Hounds a 54-50 lead. LD tied the game, then Statum scored on a tough drive through the lane at 1:55. Hofsass tied it with 1:19 left on a pair of free throws.
Statum scored 20 points to lead Shippensburg, Smith posted 17 points and Houser and Jacob Cramer each had 8.
For the Falcons, Caleb Gibbs and Hofsass each scored 18 and Gardner added 14.
The Hounds’ Cramer and Houser are seniors, as well as Dalton Foore, who did not play Tuesday. Also, 1,000-point scorer Collin Taylor missed the entire season with an injury.
Lower Dauphin 59, Shippensburg 57
Jayden Statum 8 3-5 20, Isaiah Houser 4 0-0 8, Trae Kater 0 0-0 0, Jacob Cramer 2 2-2 8, Jeremy Thomas 2 0-0 4, Anthony Smith 8 1-1 17, Tyler Hall 0 0-0 0. Totals 24 6-8 57.
Josh Gardner 6 0-2 14, Charlie Fortney 2 0-0 4, Caleb Gibbs 8 0-0 18, Braden Landis 2 0-0 5, Tyson Hofsass 5 6-7 18. Totals 23 6-10 59.
Shippensburg 15 11 21 10 — 57
Lower Dauphin 11 17 15 16 — 59
3-point shots — Ship 3 (Cramer 2, Statum); LD 7 (Gardner 2, Gibbs 2, Hofsass 2, Landis).