SLS, Canevin headed for showdown
With second-round PIAA victories, the Seton-La Salle (24-4) and Bishop Canevin (21-6) girls’ basketball teams are headed for another showdown. The section foes, who have won the past two WPIAL and state titles, will tip off against each other March 14 at a site and time to be determined.
SLS, this year’s District 7 champion, toppled Greensburg Central Catholic, 61-43, in its second-round state playoff game at Chartiers Valley High School gymnasium while Canevin dispatched Karns City, 64-40, at Clarion University.
The Lady Rebels used a 12-0 run to break open the game in the third quarter. SLS stretched that 40-17 advantage to 46-25 by the end of the frame.
The Centurions opened the game with back-to-back hoops by Carolyn Appleby, who finished with a game-high 23 points, but the hot hand of Cassidy Walsh staked the Rebels to a 10-6 advantage it would never surrendered. Walsh, a junior already committed to Pitt, buried four, 3-pointers in the first half as the Rebels stretched a 14-6 first-frame edge to 26-15 by intermission. Walsh finished with a team-high 16 points.
Naje Gibson posted a double-double. The 6-1 senior tossed in 12 points, half in the third quarter, and grabbed 10 rebounds. The Pitt recruit also blocked two shots and stole the ball twice.
Yacine Diop followed with 10 tallies. The 5-10 senior, who is also committed to the Lady Panthers, managed five steals.
Nicolete Newman and Madalena Psillidis had the Lady Rebels’ only other 3-pointers. A junior guard, Newman finished with seven points, all in the third quarter, while Psillidis supplied all five of her points in the final frame.
Morgan Henderson, a 6-2 junior center, finished with nine markers for the Lady Rebels, who ended GCC’s year for the second straight season.
Meanwhile, Johnie Olkosky and Gina Vallecorsa led Canevin to victory as each tossed in 17 points. Sarah Green and Erin Joyce chipped in 11 markers apiece.
The Lady Crusaders opened and closed strong, outscoring Karns City, 18-8, in the first and final frames. They led 33-21 at halftime.
Char Valley ousted
In PIAA boy’s basketball second round action, Chartiers Valley dropped a 68-64 decision to Lancaster Mennonite at Bedford. With the loss, the Colts ended their season at 25-2. They were undefeated section champions and WPIAL District 7 runners-up.
Matt McConnell exploded for 32 points in the loss, tossing in 23 to stake the Colts to a slim lead at halftime, 35-34. He also pulled down 11 rebounds.
The Colts fell behind, 51-47, after three frames. Though the lead ballooned to 10 points, 60-50, in the fourth quarter, the Colts were able to cut the deficit to 65-63 before the Blazers prevailed.
Julian Collazo led Lancaster Mennonite with 23 tallies. Matt Hess (13), Zach Lehman (11), Darius Bair (10) and Tyler Constein (10) followed in double digits.
Jerrad Tuite, who was averaging over 20 points during the playoffs, finished with six points for the Colts.