Chartiers Valley rides 3-pointers to win vs. Norwin

Saturday, January 15, 2022 | 5:15 PM

Slam dunks can demoralize opponents.

For the Chartiers Valley girls basketball team, 3-pointers can have a similar effect.

Yes, it’s kind of like that when the Colts start cashing in from all around the key. It’s almost sing-songy when they get into a shooting rhythm, one 3 after another dropping through the nets.

“It’s like a perfect storm with them,” Norwin coach Brian Brozeski said. “They all have such high IQs and great skill sets. And they can all shoot it.”

The Colts, ranked No. 1 in WPIAL Class 5A, rained down 10 3-pointers on 6A No. 4 Norwin Saturday on the way to a 59-43 nonsection victory in North Huntingdon.

“We don’t always rely on the 3 or settle on 3s, but if it’s there, we’re taking it,” Colts coach Tim McConnell said. “We work for the best shot and take what teams give us.”

Norwin (8-4) did its best to take away the long-range threat, holding the Colts (13-1) without a 3 in the third.

The Knights even hit eight 3s of their own. But balanced scoring, crisp ball movement and too much talent wore Norwin down despite the Knights cutting a 17-point lead to seven in the fourth quarter.

“I am proud of our girls,” Brozeski said. “When they faced adversity earlier in the season, they may have had that deer-in-headlights look. They didn’t have that today. Adversity hit them in the face, and they kept after it. The girls played hard. The first part of the gameplan is on me.”

Senior Pitt commit Aislin Malcolm (15 points), senior Seton Hill-bound twins Hallie (14) and Helene Cowan (12) and senior Columbia recruit Perri Page (12) all scored in double figures and hit two 3s apiece for the Colts. who have won nine in a row.

Malcolm, a McDonald’s All-American Game nominee, recently topped 1,500 career points and Page eclipsed 1,000.

Chartiers Valley, coming off a win over No. 2 Moon, played without its starting point guard, senior Marian Turnbull, who is out with an injury but is expected back later this month.

Reserve guard Lilah Turnbull, her freshmen sister, also is on the injured list and could miss more time.

“We didn’t have our point guard, but our girls stepped up,” McConnell said. “I was really pleased with how we played defensively. Norwin runs some really nice stuff, and they have size and shooters. We beat a really good team. This kind of game can really help us.”

Senior Maggie Race made four 3s to lead Norwin with 12 points, and senior Alderson Broaddus commit Bri Zajicek scored 11.

The first quarter saw the teams combine for eight 3s as the Colts built a 26-12 advantage.

Hallie Cowan had 10 points in the quarter.

Norwin outscored the Colts, 10-7, in the second to make it 33-22 at halftime.

The Knights trailed 43-26 in the third when they went on an 8-0 run sparked by senior Chloe Lukondi to trim the margin to 43-34.

Sophomore Ella Cupka opened the fourth with a 3 after several passes around the perimeter, but sophomore Lauren Palangio (7 points) converted a three-point play before Zajicek’s 3 made it 47-40 with 4 minutes to go.

Malcolm and Helene Cowan responded with 3s, though, to get the Colts out of danger.

Chartiers Valley was averaging 71.6 points.

“Our girls battled,” Brozeski said. “I wish I had a month to prepare for (Chartiers Valley). They’re just incredibly talented.”

Weather permitting, Norwin is set to host rival Penn-Trafford on Monday as Section 1 play resumes.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at or via Twitter .

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