This was vintage South Carroll girls basketball.
Soften up the defense with a couple of Amber Clutter three-point missiles, then take it inside to an overpowering Nicole Spencer for 28 points and garnish it all with another superb all-around performance by sophomore Lindsey Vosloh.
Spencer, Clutter and Vosloh were too much for Paint Branch to overcome last night, as the Cavaliers cruised to a 56-40 victory in the state Class 3A West Region semifinals at South Carroll.
It was the 22nd straight victory for the Cavaliers (22-1) since a season-opening loss to Hammond.
Second-seeded South Carroll advances to tomorrow night's 3A West championship game, meeting top-seeded Walt Whitman at Whitman at 7 p.m.
That game will be a rematch of last year's 3A West semifinal that was won by the Montgomery County team. Whitman defeated Bethesda-Chevy Chase, 45-40, last night.
Clutter (14 points, five assists and four steals) hit two three-pointers in the first quarter, pushing the Cavaliers to a 14-5 lead with 2:55 left in that period.
Then Spencer (12 rebounds) took over inside with her scoring and rebounding to help the Cavaliers build a 40-21 lead with 3:15 remaining in the third quarter.
It would be the largest lead of the night for South Carroll and more than enough to withstand a late third-quarter and early fourth-quarter rally by the Panthers (20-4).
Paint Branch, with 6-foot-1 junior Megan Greene (18 points) leading the way, reduced the South Carroll advantage to 45-38 with 5:10 left.
But Melissa Gettemy answered with a follow shot and Spencer stole the ball under the South Carroll basket for a layup to run the lead to 49-38 with 2:42 left.
Paint Branch threw full-court pressure at South Carroll throughout most of the game in an attempt to overcome the smooth-working Cavaliers' offense but it didn't work with Clutter and Vosloh handling the ball.
"Lindsey had an unbelievable night," said South Carroll coach Al Skierski. "She looked as if she could run all night."