2022 WPIAL Class 3A girls basketball championship breakdown: North Catholic vs. Freedom

Wednesday, March 2, 2022 | 7:09 PM

WPIAL Class 3A girls basketball championship

No. 1 North Catholic vs. No. 3 Freedom

7 p.m. Thursday, Petersen Events Center

On the air: Video livestream: TribHSSN.TribLive.com; Radio: WBVP-AM 1230, WBVP-FM 99.3, WMBA-AM 1460

WPIAL titles: North Catholic 20; Freedom 0

North Catholic (18-5)

Coach: Molly Rottmann

Projected starting lineup

No., Name, Ht., Cl., Pos.

10, Anna Waskiewicz, 5-6, jr., G

11, Alayna Rocco, 5-10, so., G

12, Dacia Lewandowski, 5-11, jr., G

22, Kaitlyn Tavella, 5-5, jr., G

30, Victoria Drevna, 5-6, jr., G

Notable: North Catholic had its run of four straight WPIAL titles stopped by Mohawk last season, falling in the title game 54-48. … The Section 1 champions will face off with section rival Freedom for the third time. The Trojanettes won 64-49 and 52-47 earlier this year. … After a first-round bye, North Catholic rolled to wins over No. 8 Laurel (61-33) in the quarterfinals and No. 5 Waynesburg Central (58-29) in the semifinals. … North Catholic is led by sophomore guard Alayna Rocco (17.1 ppg) and junior guard Dacia Lewandowski (15.3 ppg). Rocco scored 22 points in the semifinals. … Lewandowski has college scholarship offers from Akron, Colgate, Hofstra, Manhattan, Marshall, Monmouth, Mount St. Mary’s, Navy, Oakland, Stoney Brook, Toledo, UMass Lowell and Western Carolina.

Freedom (18-4)

Coach: John Kaercher

Projected starting lineup

No., Name, Ht., Cl., Pos.

2, Shaye Bailey, 5-5, so., G

11, Renae Mohrbacher, 5-6, sr., G

14, Julia Mohrbacher, 5-9, jr., F

25, Olivia Evans, 5-10, sr., F

42, Cadence Gorajewski, 5-6, sr., F

Notable: The Bulldogs are making their first appearance in the WPIAL finals. … Besides its two losses to North Catholic, Freedom’s only blemishes came against South Side and Rochester. The Bulldogs have won 10 straight games. … Freedom lost to North Catholic in last season’s WPIAL quarterfinals, 69-49. … The Bulldogs earned convincing wins over No. 6 Keystone Oaks in the quarterfinals and No. 2 Avonworth in the semifinals. … Freedom is led by sophomore guard Shaye Bailey (16.3 ppg) and senior guard Renae Mohrbacher (15.1 ppg). Bailey had 25 points in the quarterfinals, and Mohrbacher added 22 against Keystone Oaks and 13 points in the semifinal win. Mohrbacher will play soccer at Robert Morris next fall.

Bill Hartlep is the sports editor of the Tribune-Review. You can contact Bill at bhartlep@triblive.com or via Twitter @BHartlep_Trib.

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