The competitive WCAC championship game featured the Lady Panthers of PVI and the fierce Cadets of St. John High School in Washington, D.C. The game was played at American University’s Bender Arena. The Panthers advanced to the final game by the skin of their teeth after an unbelievable buzzer-beater shot by sophomore Aurea Gingras in the semifinal.
The WCAC championship game was a back and forth battle, featuring two teams similar in speed and skill. Whenever the Panthers scored, the Cadets matched the basket, and eventually took a lead. The Panthers clawed their way back, but could never overtake the young Cadets. Unfortunately Paul VI never got their lead back, resulting in a tight 54-49 victory for St. Johns. As soon as the buzzer sounded, red infiltrated the court and the sounds of cheers filled the crowd.
The Panthers rebounded from that heartbreaking loss to compete in the Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association Division I Championship in early March. The Panthers faced a familiar rival in the championship game, the Bishop Ireton Cardinals. The game was close and well-played for four quarters, and the Panthers emerged victorious, 51-50. This was the Panthers 12th consecutive VISAA Division I Championship.
The Lady Panthers finished the 2017-2018 season ranked in the top ten nationally with an an overall record of 30-4. This is the team’s fourth consecutive season with 30 or more wins.