Trailing at halftime, the undefeated Waterville Purple Panthers broke open their semifinal game with the Hermon Hawks open in the second half on their way to a win at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor.

The Wednesday match-up between the No. 3 Purple Panthers and the No. 2 Hawks was tight in the first half, but Waterville's pressure defense and held Hermon in check in the second half on the way to a 49-38 win.

Hermon did not go quietly. The Hawks cut a double-digit lead to just six points midway through the fourth quarter, but were unable to close the gap before the buzzer sounded as Waterville hit key shots in the final minute to keep the Hawks at bay.

Waterville was led by junior Sadie Garling with 16 points. Kali Thompson added eight and Jayda Murray had seven points.

For the Hawks, who finish the season at 17-3, Caitlynn Tracy had 14 points. Paige Plissey added eight points.

Waterville will play in the Class B North final at 2:05 p.m. on Saturday at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor.

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