High school roundup for Feb. 21, 2020: Thomas Jefferson shrugs off West Allegheny

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Friday, February 21, 2020 | 11:36 PM


With top-seeded Penn Hills falling victim to a quarterfinals upset, the Path to the Pete in WPIAL Class 5A boys basketball took a left turn Friday night.

Thomas Jefferson is still chugging along down that road.

Jake Pugh scored 14 points and Ethan Dunsey came off the bench to add 14 of his own as the fourth-seeded Jaguars (16-7) claimed a quarterfinal win. Shane Stump added 12 points for TJ, which will meet eighth-seeded Laurel Highlands in Tuesday’s semifinals.

Jackson Faulk had 17 points for 12th-seeded West Allegheny (13-11), which closed to within one point twice early in the fourth quarter before Thomas Jefferson went on a 14-4 run to end the game.

OLSH 64, South Side 40 — Through 22 games in the regular season and one in the playoffs, no one has yet figured out how to slow down the prolific OLSH backcourt tandem of Jake DiMichele and Dante Spadafora.

DiMichele scored 21 points and Spadafora added 20 as the top-seeded Chargers (22-1) rolled to a quarterfinal win. The defending WPIAL champs will meet 12th-seeded Winchester Thurston in Tuesday’s semifinals.

Aden Almashy led ninth-seeded South Side (12-12) with 15 points.

Sto-Rox 71, Brentwood 61 — Malik Smith scored 26 points and second-seeded Sto-Rox, one of the hottest teams in the WPIAL, opened its Class 2A playoff run with its 14th consecutive victory.

Jamil Williams added 15 points for the Vikings (17-6), who will meet sixth-seeded Shenango in Tuesday’s semifinals. Aujore Nelson had 12 points and Corey Simmons 10.

C.J. Ziegler led 10th-seeded Brentwood (18-6) with 21 points, including five 3-pointers. Chase Rosing added 12. Brentwood took a 33-22 lead into halftime on the strength of a 22-7 second-quarter advantage. Sto-Rox retook control of the game with a 24-8 run out of halftime.

Girls basketball

Mt. Lebanon 54, Seneca Valley 40 — Three quarters into its WPIAL Class 6A quarterfinal matchup, it looked like fourth-seeded Mt. Lebanon was in danger of bowing out of the playoffs early. Eight minutes later, the Blue Devils’ worries had vanished.

Patrice Smith scored 15 points, Ashleigh Connor added 13 and Morgan Palmer had 11 as Mt. Lebanon, trailing 32-29 entering the fourth quarter, outscored fifth-seeded Seneca Valley 25-8 the rest of the way. Mt. Lebanon (18-5) will meet section rival Bethel Park, the top seed, in Tuesday’s semifinals.

Maddie Karchut led Seneca Valley (15-8) with 26 points.

North Allegheny 65, Baldwin 46 — Paige Morningstar led the way with 16 points and second-seeded North Allegheny (20-3) opened up a 40-20 lead and halftime and cruised to a Class 6A quarterfinal win.

Lizzy Groetsch and Jasmine Timmerson had 15 points apiece for the Tigers, who have won 20 games for eight straight seasons. North Allegheny will meet sixth-seeded Upper St. Clair in Tuesday’s semifinals.

Lexi Bernotas led seventh-seeded Baldwin (12-10) with nine points.

Rochester 64, Aquinas Academy 24 — Alexis Robison scored 16 points and top-seeded Rochester looked like nothing less than a strong contender to repeat as WPIAL Class A champs in its playoff opener.

Corynne Hauser scored 13 points and Jasmine Mack and MeKenzie Robinson chipped in 11 apiece for Rochester (22-1), which will meet Clairton in Tuesday’s semifinals. The Rams took a 9-4 lead by the end of the first quarter.

Patricia Blume led ninth-seeded Aquinas Academy (10-12) with nine points.

Sewickley Academy 43, Vincentian Academy 31 — Kamryn Lightcap scored 13 points and sixth-seeded Sewickley Academy (14-10) used a dominant third quarter to complete an upset of third-seeded Vincentian Academy (17-6) in a Class A quarterfinal.

Bre Warner added nine points for Sewickley Academy, which will meet second-seeded West Greene in Tuesday’s semifinals. Sewickley Academy went on a 17-6 run coming out of halftime.

Tara Lucot led Vincentian with 12 points.

Clairton 43, California 41 (OT) — Taylor Jackson scored 18 points and hit the game-winning shot, a 15-foot jumper with 30 seconds left in overtime, to lead fourth-seeded Clairton (20-3) to a WPIAL Class A quarterfinals victory. Makayla Boda led 12th-seeded California (13-11) with 18 points.

With Clairton holding a 37-34 lead, California’s Sydney Smichnick banked in a game-tying 3-pointer with 26 seconds left in regulation. Jackson and California’s Joryn Cruse each made a pair of late free throws, and the game went to overtime tied 39-39.

After Boda gave California a two-point lead in overtime, Iyanna Chapman hit a layup to tie the score and Jackson’s jumper gave Clairton the win. The Bears will meet top-seeded Rochester in Tuesday’s semifinals.

West Greene 55, Avella 45 — Elizabeth Brudnock scored 19 points and second-seeded West Greene won its playoff opener in the Class A quarterfinals. Anna Durbin added 14 points for the Pioneers (23-0), who will meet sixth-seeded Sewickley Academy in Tuesday’s semifinals.

West Greene, Southmoreland and Chartiers Valley are the only undefeated teams in the girls playoff field.

Breanna Lloyd led Avella with nine points.

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