Mars’ Monday Madness gets WPIAL basketball started this week

Sunday, December 15, 2019 | 4:53 PM

Gateway won the 2018 WPIAL Class 5A girls basketball championship.

The Gators season ended two weeks later with a 50-38 loss to Mars in the PIAA quarterfinals. The Fightin’ Planets went on to win the state championship with a victory over Archbishop Wood.

Last season as section foes, Gateway and Mars split two regular season meetings.

The first meeting this season between the two is Monday at Gateway.

The Gators and Fightin’ Planets are off and running with a combined record of 7-1. Both are 1-0 in Section 2-5A.

Top guards collide

Two of the top guards in the WPIAL lead their teams into an early season showdown in Section 3-3A.

East Allegheny and Carlynton were preseason top five teams in the Trib HSSN Class 3A girls basketball rankings.

The Wildcats are led by 5-foot-9 senior Amaia Johnson, who last year averaged nearly 22 points.

Jada Lee, a 5-8 senior guard, leads the Cougars. She averaged 18.5 points last season.

Both teams are 2-2 and each won their section opener last week.

You can watch the game on Trib HSSN starting at 7 p.m.

Rising Planets

The Mars boys basketball team has had plenty of success during the Carmody Era. First, there was four years of Robby Carmody, and, now, this is the final year for Michael. The talented brothers played together for two seasons.

The two-time defending Class 5A champions are off to a 3-0 start that includes a 29-point victory over Indiana in the Section 3-5A opener last week.

On Monday, the Fightin’ Planets host Franklin Regional in the first of back-to-back nights of section action. Mars visits Shaler on Tuesday.

It has been a rough start for the Panthers who lost their section opener to Hampton and are 2-3 overall.

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