Cager Classic all-star festivities return, scheduled for March 23-25

Sunday, February 19, 2023 | 4:56 PM

The WPIAL boys and girls basketball playoffs are in full swing, but officials with the Cager Classic have been planning ahead for when the postseason concludes.

The 26th all-star games will be March 25 at Highlands High School, and the East and West rosters for the boys and girls contests have been announced.

The games will feature senior players from both sides of the Allegheny River. Schools represented are Apollo-Ridge Burrell, Butler, Fox Chapel, Franklin Regional, Kiski Area, Mars, Plum, Cheswick Christian Academy, Riverview, Armstrong, Deer Lakes, Freeport, Hampton, Highlands, Knoch, Springdale, and West Shamokin.

Franklin Regional is a new addition to the Cager’s lineup of teams.

The players will gather at Highlands for practice Thursday, March 23, to kick off the three days of activities.

The skills competition will be the next night at 7 p.m. and will include a 3-point shootout, individual hot-shot and co-ed hot shot.

On Saturday, the girls game will be at 5:30 p.m., with the introduction of the players at 5:15. The boys game will follow at approximately 7:30, with the introductions 15 minutes prior.

Advance tickets are available at B&J Sporting Goods. Adults are $6 and students are $4. Tickets also will be available at the door.

The Cager Classic games returned last year after a two-year hiatus because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The 2022 games are tough acts to follow as both went to overtime.

The West won the girls game 91-85 in double overtime as the teams combined for the most points in a girls game in Cager Classic history. The West also set a record for the most points scored by one team as it snapped a seven-game losing streak against the East.

Last year’s boys game went to an extra session as the East won 101-96.

Two players selected for this year’s games — Butler’s Madden Clement and Freeport’s Ava Soilis — will be part of the festivities, but they will not be able to play.

Clement is recovering from an ankle injury, and Solis had surgery to repair a knee injury suffered at Freeport on Jan. 5.

The rosters for the game are subject to change. The PIAA championship games are March 23-25 at Hershey’s Giant Center.

26th Cager Classic

March 25, 2023

Highlands High School




Brinley Toland, Apollo-Ridge

Sydney McCray, Apollo-Ridge

Riley Sterlitz, Burrell

Addy Landowski, Burrell

Justine Forbes, Butler

Hannah Aldridge, Butler

Elsie Smith, Fox Chapel

Sarah Penrod, Franklin Regional

Brooke Schirmer, Franklin Regional

Lexiann Colaianni, Kiski Area

Olivia Donnelly, Mars

Laurel Atwell, Mars

Cam Rogers, Plum

Bell Cullaj, Cheswick Christian Academy

Brianna Long, Riverview


Olivia Yancy, Armstrong

Mackenzie Flick, Armstrong

Jessica Sullivan, Deer Lakes

Ava Soilis, Freeport

Melaina DeZort, Freeport

Claire Rodgers, Hampton

Ava Nitowski, Highlands

Camille Gigon, Highlands

Hatie McGraw, Knoch

Nina Shaw, Knoch

Megan Vasas, Knoch

Grace Gent, Springdale

Melissa Spohn, West Shamokin

Bailey Conrad, West Shamokin



Jake Mull, Apollo-Ridge

Caden Olson, Armstrong

Ryan Porch, Butler

Colin Casteel, Butler

Madden Clement, Butler

Kam Griel, Fox Chapel

Max Leven, Franklin Regional

Jake Kimmich, Franklin Regional

Dom Dininno, Kiski Area

LeBryn Smith, Kiski Area

Marcus Cleveland, Leechburg

Tasso Sfanos, Mars

Adam Kotvas, Plum

Ben Hower, Riverview

Jack Betler, Riverview


Jude Vargo, Cheswick Christian Academy

Bryce Robson, Deer Lakes

Nate Litrun, Deer Lakes

Zack Clark, Freeport

Gavin Croney, Freeport

Brennan Murray, Hampton

Jaden McMeekin, Hampton

Chandler Thimons, Highlands

Jimmy Kunst, Highlands

Landan Signorella, Highlands

James Snyder, Knoch

Jimmy Gianetta, St. Joseph

Ethan Zale, St. Joseph

Sean McCullough, West Shamokin

Michael Love is a TribLive reporter covering sports in the Alle-Kiski Valley and the eastern suburbs of Pittsburgh. A Clearfield native and a graduate of Westminster (Pa.), he joined the Trib in 2002 after spending five years at the Clearfield Progress. He can be reached at

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