While it was not an artistic success, it nonetheless was a “program-building win,” according to West Middlesex High girls basketball coach Mike Williams.
Noelle Murray made both ends of a 1-and-1 bonus free-throw situation with 9.4 ticks to play Thursday night, and the Ms. Reds recorded a 34-32 District 10 Region 2-AA win over visiting Sharpsville.
The teams traded 51 turnovers, but compensated with competitiveness.
West Middlesex was up 2 with 5.5 seconds remaining, but an errant inbounds pass was recovered by Sharpsville’s Eugena Davies. Her subsequent court-length pass to Emily Anderson at the buzzer was not in time for a potential game-tying attempt.
“That’s a nice program win,” 1st-year Middlesex mentor Williams said. “We’re trying to build a program here, and it’s been a while since we beat Sharpsville.
“Sharpsville is one of those teams you measure yourself against every year. We want to be able to play with the Sharpsvilles, Sharons and Mercers. They’re good programs,” Williams praised.
In addition to Murray, Williams started two other freshmen, Allie Staunch and Gretchen Elsey.
“We made a lot of freshman and sophomore mistakes,” Williams admitted. “We already were a young team. ... We’d take the lead, give it back; take the lead, give it back. But we did a decent job late in the game, controlling the tempo. And there was a lot of pressure on a freshman to knock down those free throws.”
For Sharpsville (0-1, 1-4) and skipper Jeff Hanley, an injury-plagued season grew worse.
Already without senior standout Megan Davis (ACL tear), the Blue Devils lost versatile junior Maddie Przicina a minute-and-a-half into the game due to a sprained left ankle. She did not return.
Davies also sustained a mild ankle sprain during the 2nd stanza, but returned and drilled a game-high 13 points, tossing in 2 treys as part of 7 third-period points as the Blue Devils drew within 23-22 entering the 4th frame.
Murray mustered a dozen points for Middlesex (1-0, 4-2), and Morgan Atterholt added 8 points and a game-high 8 rebounds, while Alyson Pierce distributed 4 assists. But the Ms Reds recorded just 13-for-46 shooting from the field (28.2) and committed 24 miscues.
Sharpsville shot just 13 for 32 (40.6) and the Blue Devils were guilty of 27 turnovers. Anderson added 9 points and Kayla Kurelko facilitated Davies and other Blue Devils for a game-high 7 assists.
“This is just really a program-building victory for us, and I couldn’t be more proud to be a Big Red,” Williams concluded. — By Ed Farrell, Herald assistant sports editor.
ä Mercer 74, Reynolds 46 — At the County Seat, Alexis Arkwright annexed the career 1,000-point plateau via game-high 26-point performance.
Arkwright has scored 1,002 points during her scholastic career for Mercer mentor Aaron Cook.
Also for Class AA Mercer (4-2), Alexis Mills mustered a dozen markers.
The Lady M’s manufactured a 23-6 first-quarter lead and extended their edge to a 50-22 margin at intermission.
For Class A Reynolds (0-6), Rose Stoyer and Brooke Bresnan buck eted 14 and 13 points, respectively. The Lady Raiders recorded 14-for-19 free-throw marksmanship.
ä Hickory 69, Slippery Rock 42 — At “The Rock Box” in Slippery Rock, coach Jeanette Whitehead’s Lady Hornets (1-0, 6-0) rolled in their Region 5-AAA opener and remained unbeaten with a win over the host Lady Rockets (0-1, 2-2).
Hickory led 24-6 after the opening 8 minutes and buried 11 three-pointers during the game.
YSU recruit Nikki Arbanas rifled in 6 treys en route to 26 points for Hickory. Also, Holly Grober scored 16, Shawn Moore had 11 and Brandi Beader added 10 markers. Grober had 9 rebounds and dished out 5 assists, Arbanas tallied 3 steals, Nicole Lacava grabbed 5 rebounds, Beader had 4 steals and Megan Chess registered 4 assists.
“It was a great, total team effort,” said Whitehead. “I thought the girls shared the ball well and gave a great defensive effort. I need to credit Shawna, Reganne (O’Brien) and Jasmine (Shephard) for good role play. It was all significant to our win.”
Marissa Siebka and Nicole Papley had 13 points each for Slippery Rock.
ä Wilmington 57, Sharon 49 — At New Wilmington, the host Lady Hounds held Sharon to 8 fourth-frame points in securing the Region 2-AA opening win.
Wilmington went out to a 34-27 halftime lead and maintained a 46-41 margin through 3 quarters.
Hannah Drake drilled 17 points for Wilmington (1-0, 5-1), Tessa Sikora scored 14, and Alanna Elliott ended with 11.
Tanaija Sanders scored 16 for Sharon (0-1, 1-4), which dropped its 4th consecutive contest. The Lady Tigers tallied only 4 of 10 free throws, also, though Wilmington was only 6 for 15.
ä Farrell 89, George Junior Republic 55 — At Grove City, the visiting Steelers stormed to the Region 5-AAA road rout — their 2nd within 48 hours.
Ike Jones jolted GJR for 16 points, Malik Miller mustered 15 markers, Chris James joined in with 14, Terrance Holloway hit for 12, and Dewayne Burns burst for a season-best 10.
Farrell fashioned a 28-11 first-quarter lead and never was challenged.
For GJR (1-2, 2-3), Malik Gibson garnerd a game-high 21 points and Eric Fuller fired in 12.
ä Sharon 37, Sharpsville 25 — At Tiger Gymnasium, coach Dave Ciafre’s Sharon High squad improved to 2-0 with the win.
Jason Clark (138), Troy Hejazi (145) and Beau Dignall (182) registered falls for Sharon.
P.J. Campoli (195) and Jacob Llewellyn (220) posted pins for Sharpsville.
ä Grove City 55, Slippery Rock 24 — At Grove City, the host Eagles (1-3) picked up their 1st win of the season.
Alex Brochetti (132), Jared Sample (145) and Chet Simoni (152) earned falls for Grove City, which received 5 forfeits from the Rockets.
Dave Huselton (126), Shane Slater (195) and Zane Wolf (220) posted pins for Slippery Rock.
ä Greenville 57, Jamestown 16 — At Greenville, the Trojans rolled to the Region 2 win over the Muskies.
Blake Reynolds (132), Gavin Wilkerson (138), Derek Watt (145), Zachary Miller (170), Justin Reynolds (182) and Randall Peabody (285) notched pins for the Trojans.
Mohamed Messai (195) and Jason Shappee (220) had falls for Jamestown and Faris Messai won by major decision at 120 pounds.
ä Franklin 36, Mercer 33 — At Franklin, the visiting Mustangs mustered 7 wins, but were forced to forfeit 5 bouts to Franklin.
For Mercer (0-1), Chris Micsky (113), Preston Hoover (120), Colton Smith (22) and Brian Phillips (285) posted pins.
SHARPSVILLE 4 7 11 10 32
MIDDLESEX 3 8 12 11 34
SHARPSVILLE — Davies 5-0-0-13, Przicina 0-0-0-0, Anderson 4-1-2-9, Kurelko 0-1-4-1, Schell 1-0-0-2, Sloan 3-0-0-7. Shuttleworth 0-0-0-0. 3-pt. goals: Davies 3, Sloan 1. Totals: 13-2-6-32.
WEST MIDDLESEX — Atterholt 3-2-6-8, Pierce 2-3-4-7, Murray 5-2-4-12, Staunch 1-0-0-2, Elsey 2-0-0-5, White 0-0-0-0. 3-pt. goal: Elsey 1. Totals: 13-7-14-34.
JV — Sharpsville, 29-5. Kailee Scurpa 14 points for Sharpsville.
REYNOLDS 6 16 8 16 46
MERCER 23 27 15 9 74
REYNOLDS — Stoyer 3-8-10-14, Babcock 0-0-0-0, Thompson 0-0-0-0, Bresnan 5-3-5-13, Napodano 2-2-2-6, Yahner 1-0-0-2, A.Cutshaw 0-0-0-0, Cadman 0-0-0-0. Totals: 15-14-19-46.
MERCER — Arkwright 11-2-5-26, Mills 5-1-2-12, McKinney 2-3-4-7, Cook 2-0-0-4, Angermeier 3-0-0-6, Fisher 3-1-2-9, Glass 1-0-0-2, Fedorchak 1-2-2-5, Edwards 0-0-0-0, Conner 1-0-0-2, Haught 0-0-1-0, Thompson 0-1-2-1. 3-pt. goals: Arkwright 2, Fisher 2, Mills 1, Fedorchak 1. Totals: 29-9-18-74.
JV — No score reported.
HICKORY 24 12 13 20 69
SLIPPERY ROCK 6 11 19 6 42
HICKORY — Arbanas 10-0-0-26, Moore 4-1-2-11, Shephard 0-0-2-0, O’Brien 1-0-0-2, Beader 4-0-0-10, Lacava 1-2-2-4, Hol. Grober 6-3-5-16, DeJulia 0-0-0-0, Chess 0-0-0-0, Hea. Grober 0-0-0-0, Whitehead 0-0-0-0, Wilson 0-0-0-0. 3-pt. goals: Arbanas 6, Moore 2, Beader 2, Hol. Grober 1. Totals: 26-6-11-69.
SLIPPERY ROCK — Dietz 1-0-0-2, Bertozzi 0-0-0-0, Campbell 3-2-2-8, Siebka 4-3-4-13, McGonigle 2-0-0-4, Whitmer 1-0-0-2, Papley 6-0-0-13, Boyd 0-0-0-0, Novak 0-0-0-0, Croll 0-0-0-0, Guy 0-0-0-0. 3-pt. goals: Siebka 2, Papley 1. Totals: 17-5-6-42.
JV — Hickory, 40-36. Neely Whitehead 11 for Hickory. Sedona Campbell 11, Stephanie Croll 10 for Slippery Rock.
SHARON 12 15 14 8 49
WILMINGTON 14 20 12 11 57
SHARON — Mal. Torr 3-0-0-8, Mag. Torr 1-1-2-3, Jacoway 3-0-0-6, Dabney 2-0-2-5, Williams 4-0-0-8, D. Smith 2-1-2-5, Sanders 6-2-4-16, McGranahan 0-0-0-0. Totals: 21-4-10-49.
WILMINGTON — Sikora 7-0-2-14, Elliott 5-0-0-11, Marett 2-1-2-5, Drake 6-3-7-17, Thompson 3-1-2-7, McCown 1-1-2-3. Totals: 24-6-15-57.
JV — Sharon, 41-29.
FARRELL 28 14 27 20 89
GEORGE JUNIOR 11 12 20 12 55
FARRELL — Burns 4-2-5-10, Jones 5-6-10-16, Brown 3-2-5-8, Holloway 5-2-4-12, Davis 2-0-0-4, Miller 6-1-1-15, Phillips 1-0-0-2, James 6-2-4-14, Archie 4-0-0-8. 3-pt. goals: Miller 2. Totals: 36-15-29-89.
GEORGE JUNIOR REPUBLIC — Pearson 1-4-8-6, Baker 1-0-1-2, Fuller 5-1-5-12, Holloway 2-1-2-5, Gibson 9-3-6-21, Johnson 1-0-0-2, Hogg 2-1-1-5, Kelly 0-2-2-2. 3-pt. goals: Fuller 1, Hogg 1. Totals: 21-12-24-55.
JV — GJR, 73-47. Raheam Kelly 12, Tameron Jeter 11, Anthony White 11 for GJR. Leon Lewis 16, Marcus McCoy 14 for Farrell.
SHARON 37, SHARPSVILLE 25
152 — Chris Enos (Sv) major dec. Nick McClimans, 15-5; 160 — Cory Buchanan (Sn) dec. Miles Bowser, 1-0; 170 — Gage Priester (Sv) dec. Eric Ziegler, 8-4; 182 — Beau Dignall (Sn) pinned Eli Soles, 1:12; 195 — P.J. Campoli (Sv) pinned Brice Laughlin, 0:53; 220 — Jacob Llewellyn (Sv) pinned Thomas Flanders, 0:32; 285 — Chris Mueller (Sv) forfeit; 106 — Jules Hicklin (Sn) forfeit; 113 — double forfeit; 120 — Marcus Coxson (Sn) major dec. Andy Ryan, 14-0; 126 — Austin Alfreno (Sn) dec. Nick Enos, 4-2; 132 — Jordan Templeton (Sn) dec. Austin Szugye, 7-3; 138 — Jason Clark (Sn) pinned Mike Mellott, 0:39; 145 — Troy Hejazi (Sn) pinned Maison Millero, :29. JV: No match.
GROVE CITY 55, SLIPP. ROCK 24
170 — Isaac Heffner (GC) forfeit; 182 — Zion Scriven (GC) forfeit; 195 — Shane Slater (SR) pinned Austin Birckbichler, 2:52; 220 — Zane Wolf (SR) pinned Jared Reppart, 2:29; 285 — Morgan Kordes (GC) forfeit; 106 — Cory Bable (GC) forfeit; 113 — Bryce Martin (GC) forfeit; 120 — Kyle Stephenson (SR) forfeit; 126 — Dave Huselton (SR) pinned Jacob Powell, 0:27; 132 — Alex Brochetti (GC) pinned Luc LaChance, 3:28; 138 — Luke Walter (GC) maj. dec. Matt Andrasik, 12-1; 145 — Jared Sample (GC) pinned Adam John, 1:15; 152 — Chet Simoni (GC) pinned James Scarvorack, 0:33; 160 — Cordell Sanders (GC) dec. Tristan Dorland, 11-6. JV: No match.
GREENVILLE 57, JAMESTOWN 16
160 — Gage Gladysz (G) dec. Garrett Morgan, 9-8; 170 — Zachary Miller (G) pinned Nathan Blattner, 1:53; 182 — Justin Reynolds (G) pinned William Shappee, 3:39; 195 — Mohamed Messai (J) pinned Alex Ho, 2:32; 220 — Jason Shappee (J) pinned James Wilkerson, 3:45; 285 — Randall Peabody (G) pinned Trenton Wargo, :23; 106 — Michael Lineman (G) dec. Hunter Goodlin, 3-0; 113 — Jase Paxton (G) forfeit; 120 — Faris Messai (J) major dec. Joseph Safner, 14-1; 126 — Brandon Moss (G) forfeit; 132 — Blake Reynolds (G) pinned Josh Jones, 3:06; 138 — Gavin Wilkerson (G) pinned Jacob Reaugh, 2:35; 145 — Derek Watt (G) pinned Trey Lamont, 0:53; 152 — Jacob Rickert (G) dec. Devin Randall, 10-4. JV: No score reported.
FRANKLIN 36, MERCER 33
113 — Chris Micsky (M) pinned Caleb Jolley, 1:03; 120 — Preston Hoover (M) pinned Nate Stielpogel, 1:56; 126 — Drux Harper (F) dec. Ben Shaffer, 6-3; 132 — Trevor Fowler (M) dec. Zack Sharrar, 6-4; 138 — Hunter Cook (F) forfeit; 145 — Sam Garner (M) dec. Tyler Emrick, 6-2; 152 — Eric Steetle (F) forfeit; 160 — Eli Rutter (M) dec. Hunter Exley, 7-0; 170 — Dakota Geer (F) forfeit; 182 — Nate Miller (F) dec. Troy Sagulla, 3-0; 195 — David Beach (F) forfeit; 220 — Colton Smith (M) pinned Jeff Craig, 1:24; 285 — Brian Phillips (M) pinned Mike McCool, 3:49; 106 — Brad Simmons (F) forfeit.
JV: No match.
While it was not an artistic success, it nonetheless was a “program-building win,” according to West Middlesex High girls basketball coach Mike Williams.
Breese defends heavyweight title at PIAA Championships
HERSHEY, Pa. — Move over Rod Wright!
Lakeview senior heavyweight star Sam Breese had a goal coming into the PIAA State Class AA Wrestling Championships this weekend at Hershey Giant Center — besides winning a second state crown, that is.
WM knocks off Neshannock in PIAA playoffs
SLIPPERY ROCK — The notion of Trey Staunch sneaking up on opposing teams is laughable. At 6-foot-3 and approximately 225 pounds, the stout Staunch is not sneaking up on anyone.
However after posting a game-high 31-point, 18-rebound performance in West Middlesex High basketball team’s 76-66 PIAA Class AA playoffs opening-round win over Neshannock Saturday night, Staunch said opponents may have been overlooking the Big Reds.
Hickory girls 26-0, oust Johnstown
SLIPPERY ROCK — At Morrow Field House Saturday evening, the Hickory Lady Hornets kept the perfect season alive with a 63-37 state playoff first round win over the Greater Johnstown Trojans from District 6.
“It feels great to get the win (Saturday),” said veterans Hickory coach Jeanette Whitehead. “We’ve been at this place over the last few years and we’ve been sent home in the first round so it was a huge win for us. I’m very proud of our team effort."
KC girls roll past California in PIAA playoffs
SLIPPERY ROCK — Kennedy Catholic High girls’ basketball team was in the ’hood Saturday afternoon.
Led by senior Taylor Hood, the Lady Golden Eagles eased past California, 53-34, in the opening round of the PIAA Class A playoffs.
Lakeview's Breese to defend PIAA title
HERSHEY, Pa. — If you are Major League Baseball player, a .333 batting average is great. But in wrestling at the state tournament — not so much!
Out of the dozen wrestlers that Mercer County sent to Hershey for the PIAA State Class AA Wrestling Championships, only four (.333) will reach the medal stand today — led by Lakeview senior Sam Breese who shoots for a second straight gold medal.
Farrell edges Montour, 60-57, in PIAA opener
Montour High boys’ basketball coach Adam Kaufman lamented another season-ending setback. However there are several hundred coaches across the Commonwealth who envy his program’s recent success and would trade places with him in a heartbeat.
But during Friday night’s PIAA Class AAA playoff opener, Kaufman & Co. could not overcome those streaky Steelers ... those survivin’ Steelers.
“ ... Hey, survive and move on,” summarized Steelers’ skipper Roland Shannonhouse following Farrell’s 60-57 win at Sharon High.
GCC ousts Mercer in 1st round of PIAAs
The Mercer Lady Mustangs were outscored 16-4 in the final quarter of the first round of the state playoffs by the Greensburg Central Catholic Centurions, ending their season Friday night 56-31 at Sharon High School.
Senior Lexie Arkwright had a 20-point, 10-rebound double-double performance for the Lady M’s. She also snagged three steals. Adelyn Cook and Haylie Glass each added 4 points for Mercer.
5 area matmen to quarterfinals in Hershey
HERSHEY — Mercer County matmen had mixed results on the opening day of action in the PIAA State Class AA Wrestling Championships at the Giant Center.
Only 5 of the county’s dozen entries — led by defending state champ Sam Breese of Lakeview (285) — won their preliminary matches to move into the tournament quarterfinals which begin at 9 a.m. today. However the other 7 lost their first matches, although 3 are still alive in the consolations heading into this morning’s action.
Coach Chad Mild's Big Reds are road warriors
West Middlesex High boys basketball team did not play its first home game until after the first of the year, but competing at New Castle, Farrell and Youngstown’s Covelli Centre has served it well.
Witness West Middlesex’s 55-54 win over Fairview in last weekend’s District 10 Class AA championship game — at Edinboro University’s McComb Field House.
Boys PIAA basketball preview boxes
Who: Farrell (22-3) vs. Montour (16-8).
What: Opening round.
When: 7:30 p.m. today.
Where: Sharon High’s Tiger Gymnasium.
Hickory, Mercer, KC girls PIAA playoff boxes
Who: Hickory (25-0) vs. Greater Johnstown (11-14).
What: PIAA Playoffs, 1st round.
When: 5:30 p.m. Saturday.
Where: Slippery Rock University.
Shannonhouse's Steelers set for statewide stage
With the approaching spring, a young man’s fancy turns to ... what else? The PIAA playoffs. And when Shenango Valley scholastic basketball aficionados think of the postseason they think of Farrell.
Recently at E.J. McCluskey Gymnasium, the banners above were blowing in the breeze — ’52 ... ’54 ... ’56 ... ’59 ... ’60 ... ’69 ... ’72 — swaying as sprinting players created a vacuum of air rising from the floor. Melodramatic maybe, but there’s a feeling at Farrell that harkens back to the heyday when playoff success was a rite of passage.
Breese eyes repeat at state mat tourney
There is no doubt that winning a state championship in wrestling is a difficult thing to do. Winning two is even tougher.
“There’s a target on your chest,” pointed out Lakeview High coach Tom Tingley in preseason this year, referring to his star wrestler Sam Breese who won a state heavyweight crown as a junior last year.
Obviously that target hasn’t bothered the Sailors big man who is a perfect 32-0 this season as he attempts to become only the 12th Mercer County matman to win multiple titles.
WRESTLING NOTEBOOK: It's a young group of county matmen headed to state
THERE’S definitely a youth movement in Mercer County wrestling as demonstrated by the group of 11 matmen who are advancing to the PIAA State Class AA Championships on Thursday.
Eight of the locals are underclassmen. The only seniors are Lakeview’s Sam Breese (285), Reynolds’ Levi Stoyer (145) and Jamestown’s Mohamed Messai (182).
Breese and Stoyer are the only returning state place-winners. Breese, who has verbally committed to Kent State University to wrestle next season, won the heavyweight class and is seeking a second gold medal. Stoyer placed 7th at 145 and wants to climb much higher on the medals stand.
Kennedy boys forfeit win, are out of playoffs
The PIAA basketball playoffs do not begin until Friday, but Mercer County already lost a team.
Kennedy Catholic High disclosed Monday the discovery of an academically-ineligible player, who competed in last Friday’s District 10 Class A consolation contest.
Kennedy Catholic edged Eisenhower in double-OT, 66-62, earning a berth in the statewide tournament. The Golden Eagles were to meet District 9 champion Ridgway Friday at Clarion University’s Tippin Gymnasium in the opening round; instead, Eisenhower will represent D-10 as its 3rd-place team.
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- Breese defends heavyweight title at PIAA Championships