No. 4 Woodland Hills holds off No. 13 West Allegheny in Class 5A 1st-round victory
By: Don Rebel
Monday, February 18, 2019 | 11:54 PM
It was a throwback to a matchup several decades before, be it Michigan State against Indiana or the Celtics facing the Lakers.
It was like Magic vs. Bird.
Through two quarters, Keandre Bowles of Woodland Hills and Jackson Faulk of West Allegheny matched each other shot for shot as the two combined for 33 points and the Indians led the Wolverines at the half by one.
But things changed in the second half as Markeife Harvey played a great third wheel and made the difference as No. 4 Woodland Hills survived No. 13 West Allegheny, 69-60, in a WPIAL Class 5A boys basketball first-round game Monday at Mt. Lebanon.
The Indians had bracket busting on their mind as they raced out to a 10-2 lead before the Wolverines scored the last seven points of the first quarter.
The second quarter was a carbon copy as West Allegheny opened up a nine-point lead before Woodland Hills finished the half strong and trailed 29-28 at the break.
“They came out flying, and we had our backs against the wall,” Woodland Hills coach Odell Miller said. “When your backs are against the wall, the only thing you can do is come out and play defense, which is what we did.”
Bowles, a senior, had 17 first-half points for Woodland Hills, while Faulk, a junior, had 16 to lead West A.
While Bowles and Faulk continued to score in the second half, the big difference was the emergence of Harvey. Held to four points in the first half, the senior scored 18 points in the final two quarters.
“If anybody else is going to step up, he has to,” Miller said of Harvey’s big second half. “He’s had some big games for us this year.”
West Allegheny played with a lot of energy in the first half, but seemed to hit a wall at times in the second half as Faulk was short on several shots behind the arc in the second half.
Bowles ended up with 34 points, four points over his average, while Harvey had 22 points for the Wolverines (18-5), who will face Chartiers Valley in the quarterfinals Friday at a time and site to be determined.
“Keandre is a great player,” Miller said. “He started slow, but once he hit a couple of jump shots, he was off to the races. Once he gets going he is hard to stop.”
Faulk finished with 26 points, six above his average as West Allegheny finished at 9-14.
Don Rebel hosts the Rebel Yell podcasts for HSSN.