Girls basketball teams begin 2nd half as part of 3 things to watch Thursday in WPIAL athletics

Wednesday, January 17, 2018 | 5:20 PM

The start to the second half of section play in WPIAL girls basketball gets off to a bit of a slow start Thursday night with games in only 11 of the 19 sections up and down the six classifications.

That doesn't mean there aren't plenty of key contests. Two of the night's better girls roundball matchups are in Class 2A.

The two top teams in Section 1-2A meet for the second time this season, as defending champion Chartiers-Houston visits Our Lady of the Sacred Heart. The Bucs won at home in mid-December, 47-40.

Chartiers-Houston is a perfect 7-0 in the section while Our Lady of the Sacred Heart is 5-1. The two teams are a combined 20-5 overall.

First place in Section 3-2A is at stake when Serra Catholic hosts California. The two teams are deadlocked with 6-1 section records. The Eagles go for the season sweep of the Trojans after winning 60-57 on Dec. 14.

The California at Serra Catholic game can be heard at 7:30 p.m. on the TribLive High School Sports Network .

Make-up games

It seems a lot of the snow nights or bitter cold evening have come on a Tuesday or Friday because while most of the WPIAL girls basketball teams are caught up, many boys teams have at least one, if not more make-up games, over the next couple of weeks.

On Thursday, a few choice boys make-up contests are scheduled.

• Butler at Seneca Valley in Section 1-6A — Butler needs a win to stay in a first-place tie with Pine-Richland and Central Catholic while Seneca Valley needs a win to stay ahead of North Allegheny and Shaler in the battle for fourth place.

• Holy Family Academy at Union in Section 1-A — This is a game that has been postponed twice already. Both teams are tied for second place with 3-1 records, trailing only Vincentian Academy in the chase for section supremacy.

• Imani Christian at Winchester Thurston in Section 3-A — Imani Christian needs a win to remain tied with Eden Christian before a big battle for first place Friday, while a Winchester Thurston victory lifts the Bears into a tie for second with the Saints.

North/West vs South/East

Two of the top teams and two of the hottest squads in PIHL Class 2A collide on the ice Thursday at the Belmont Ice Complex in Kittanning.

Armstrong is 11-1-0-0 and alone in first place in the North/West Division thanks to 11 consecutive wins after a season-opening loss.

Latrobe is in second place, one point behind Franklin Regional in the South/East Division with a mark of 9-4-0-0. But the Wildcats have won two straight and 7 of 8 since the end of October.

Something has to break as the River Hawks have the two leading scorers in 2A with Zachary Kutch (17 goals, 19 assists) and Jace Rearic (17 goals and 12 assists).

Meanwhile, the Wildcats have one of the top goaltenders in the classification, with Gage Handwork boasting a 2.93 goals-against average.

Don Rebel is a TribLIVE High School Sports Network broadcaster and staff writer. Reach him at

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