Farrell 71, Strong Vincent 69 — At Meadville Area Senior High’s “House of Thrills,” the venue lived up to its billing on Tuesday as the Steelers (21-3) rallied from an 18-point deficit to beat the Colonels (16-8) and advance to the District 10 championship game.
Farrell trailed by 18 points with 5 minutes left to play, but Steelers’ sophomore Malik Miller got red-hot and led the rally.
“We were waiting on him down the stretch and he played like a champion — the champion that he is,” said Farrell coach Roland Shannonhouse.
“I told them to get after it (concerning the 18-point deficit), play defense and if we got it to 10 (points) with two minutes to go, we’d win it.
“We’ve been telling them all year that offense is nice, but it’s defense that will win you a championship.”
Strong Vincent held a slim 13-10 lead at the end of the 1st quarter, but the Steelers put a run together and held a 29-26 lead at halftime.
The 3rd quarter was disastrous for Farrell as they were outscored 29-15, but the locals dug deep and posted a 27-14 scoring advantage in the final frame.
Chris James buried a trio of treys en route to a game-high 27 points for Farrell while Miller also drained 3 treys and finished with 16 points.
David Morris paced ESV with 25 points, Dahjere Pacely bucketed 17 and Kyle Pointer added 10 markers.
Farrell will face Erie East on Friday for the D-10 title at 8 p.m. Friday at Meadville. East beat Oil City, 53-41, on Tuesday at Edinboro University.
Farrell has been living on the edge in the D-10 playoffs thus far — pulling out the big win late Tuesday night and beating Girard, 63-60, in overtime in the quarterfinals.
ä Erie First Christian Academy 64, Kennedy Catholic 49 — The king is dead, long live the ... wait a minute, the king is still alive and only wounded.
Defending District 10 Class A champion Kennedy won’t be returning to their familiar place each year in the D-10 finals, but at least they have a shot to battle back in the consolation round Friday and still advance to the PIAA tournament.
“It’s a letdown for a Kennedy team not to be in the District 10 finals,” said a disappointed KC coach Rick Mancino shortly after the loss at Sharon High School Tuesday night. “But not everybody wins a district title and not everyone wins a state title.
“We’ve got to get back up and get ready. That’s why I wanted the kids to play had ’til the end and hustle. We need it to carry over.”
And play hard they did. Trailing 47-28 after three periods against the much bigger squad from the north, the Golden Eagles came out battling tough. Their press forced several turnovers and the team rattled off 9 straight points to cut the margin to 47-37 when Andre Campbell canned a pair of free throws with 5:30 remaining in the game.
But the EFCA Eagles hung in and began to break the press by throwing the ball in to 6-foot-11 Valentine Sangoyomi. And they held off Kennedy, despite a determined effort by the local squad.
“When your tallest guy is 6-1 going against 6-11 it’s pretty tough,” said Mancino.
Kennedy got off to a great start in the game, leading 11-9 after one period. In fact, it was 11-7 with the Golden Eagles playing for the final shot of the frame. However, a KC missed shot came too early and EFCA’s Luke Hess took an outlet pass speeding downcourt and put in a layup just before the whistle. “That wasn’t the way we drew it up,” said a dismayed Mancino.
That set the tone for a second quarter when the Golden Eagles were colder than the polar vortex. Despite some inside layup chances, the locals didn’t score a single bucket in the second period and were outscored before intermission 16-4.
The EFCA Eagles continued to pour it on in the third period, outgunning KC by 22-13. The lead was just too much for the gutsy Golden Eagles to overcome as Kennedy was forced to constantly foul in the late going and the Erie club made 13 of 15 from the charity stripe at crunch time.
Erie was led by Augustine Mathias with 18 points, while Hess canned 11. For KC, Campbell led with 18, while Gerald Zachar and Sam Crow each hit for 9.
The big size difference in the clubs showed in the stats as Erie outrebounded Kennedy, 29 to 11.
“We just didn’t make shots and against a team that big, you have to make shots,” lamented Mancino. “We’ll have to do better in the next game.”
Their foe in the consolation finals will be Eisenhower, who lost 61-33 to Cochranton. The winner of that game will advance to the PIAA playoffs while the loser will go home. — By Herald Sports Editor Lynn Saternow.
ä Fairview 64, Reynolds 28 — At Edinboro University’s McComb Fieldhouse, the Tigers (22-2) rolled past the Raiders (15-8) in the District 10 semifinals Tuesday night.
Coach Keith Nies’ Tigers jumped out to a 9-0 lead and never looked back as they advanced to Friday’s championship game.
Andy Niland rifled in 23 points for Fairview, Ben Kocan drained 4 treys en route to 14 points and Shannon Jackson tallied 11 points.
Garhett Frable led the way for Reynolds with 7 points while Jacob Leipheimer scored 6.
“I told the guys after the game that what happened, happened,” said Reynolds 3rd-year coach Dan Kilgore. “Whether you lose by 35 points or by one on a last-second shot, it doesn’t matter.
“It’s a tough loss, but we just have to shake it off and get ready for the consolation game. We’ll learn from it, shake it off, have a couple strong days of practice and that will put ourselves into position to get out of District 10. If we let the loss linger, we’ll be in trouble.
“Fairview is a tremendous team. If they play like they played tonight, they’ll give anyone a run.”
Reynolds ousted Seneca, 47-43, in the D-10 quarterfinals while Fairview defeated Wilmington, 61-55.
Fairview advances to the championship game against West Middlesex on Friday while the Raiders will play Mercyhurst Prep in the consolation game.
Fairview lost to West Middlesex, 58-48, in the semifinals last year. They were then denied entry into the PIAA playoffs with a loss to Mercyhurst Prep in the D-10 consolation game.
OHSAA DIV. III PLAYOFFS
Canton Regional Bracket
ä Brookfield 68, Garretsville-Garfield 57 — The playoff run of the Brookfield Warriors continued with the victory and next up is Newton Falls at 7 p.m. Friday at Newton Falls High School.
In a previous meeting at Newton Falls just two games ago, the Warriors of coach Bill Kovach dropped a 59-49 decision.
Against Garfield, the Warriors led 19-12 after one period and moved to a 35-21 margin at intermission. By the close of the third frame, Brookfield was on top by 45-39.
Brookfield (13-9) was led in scoring by Nate Johnson with 17 points and Jamar Tarver with 14. For Garfield (7-14), Chase Chapman had 16, Nick Jurcevic 12 and Anthony Workman 11.
DISTRICT 10 SEMIFINALS
VINCENT 13 13 29 14 69
FARRELL 10 19 15 27 71
STRONG VINCENT — Pointer 4-2-4-10, Gillespie 1-1-2-3, Morris 8-8-8-25, Pacely 7-3-5-17, Wofford 2-2-4-7, Green 2-0-0-4, Hatkevich 1-0-0-2, Miller 0-1-2-1, Williams 0-0-0-0. 3-pt. goals: Morris 1, Wofford 1. Totals: 25-17-25-69.
FARRELL — Burns 2-0-0-4, Jones 1-5-6-7, Brown 1-5-6-7, McNair 2-1-3-5, Miller 3-7-8-16, James 10-4-5-27, Archie 2-1-2-5, Holloway 0-0-0-0. 3-pt. goals: Miller 3, James 3. Totals: 21-23-30-71.
REYNOLDS 6 7 10 5 28
FAIRVIEW 17 18 18 11 64
REYNOLDS — Frable 2-3-3-7, Leipheimer 2-0-0-6, Woods 2-1-2-5, Reimold 1-3-4-5, Beck 2-0-0-5. 3-pt. goals: Leipheimer 2, Beck 1. Totals: 9-7-9-28.
FAIRVIEW — Kocan 5-0-0-14, Niland 9-2-2-23, Welch 1-0-2-2, Coles 3-1-2-7, Corbin 3-1-4-7, Jackson 4-3-5-11. 3-pt. goals: Kocan 4, Niland 3. Totals: 25-7-15-64.
EFCA 9 16 22 17 64
KENNEDY 11 4 13 21 49
FIRST CHRISTIAN ACADEMY — Kabono 4-0-0-9, Hess 4-2-4-11, Wariboko 3-0-0-6, L. Kallay 1-2-2-5, H. Kallay 0-6-6-6, Sangoyomi 2-5-6-9. 3-pt. goals: Hess 1, L. Kallay 1, Kabongo 1. Totals: 21-19-23-64
KENNEDY CATHOLIC — Campbell 7-2-2-18, Zachar 2-5-8-9, Crow2-4-4-9, Nolan Cianci 3-0-0-7, Gavin Cianci 0-2-4-2, Feeney 1-2-4-4, Hurton 0-0-0-0. 3-pt. goals: Campbell 2, N. Cianci 1, Crow 1.Totals: 15-15-22-49.
OHSAA DIV. III PLAYOFFS
Canton Regional Bracket
GARFIELD 12 9 18 18 57
BROOKFIELD 19 16 10 20 68
GARFIELD — Bissler 0-0-0-0, Evans 1-0-0-3, Maxem 3-2-2-8, Workman 5-1-2-11, Jurcevic 4-4-4-12, Chapman 6-0-0-16, Butler 3-0-0-7. 3-pt. goals: Chapman 4, Evans 1, Butler 1. Totals: 22-7-8-57.
BROOKFIELD — Kraml 2-0-0-5, Hunkus 3-0-0-7, Dickson 3-0-0-6, Johnson 6-4-5-17, Englehart 0-0-0-0, Tarver 6-2-4-14, Wallace 6-3-6-15, Hiner 2-0-0-4. 3-pt. goals: Kraml 1, Hunkus 1, Johnson 1. Totals: 28-9-15-68.
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