North Allegheny’s Lizzy Groetsch caps high school career with Roundball Classic MVP
Saturday, May 15, 2021 | 8:55 PM
It’s been quite a past several months for North Allegheny senior Lizzy Groetsch.
The 5-foot-11 guard led her school to the Class 6A WPIAL and PIAA titles and was named Trib HSSN Player of the Year and state 6A Player of the Year. Saturday at Geneva College, Groetsch capped her scholastic career by being named Game MVP as the Class 6A girls hung on to defeat Class 5A, 92-88, in the Roundball Classic at Metheny Fieldhouse.
“It’s been amazing,” the Penn recruit said. “I’m really thankful that we could just have a season, and we had a great season at NA.”
It looked as if Class 6A would run away with Saturday’s all-star contest, leading 5A at one point, 69-54. But 5A rallied behind MVP Peyton Pinkney of Woodland Hills and Courtney Dahlquist to come within two. Groetsch made four solid defensive plays down the stretch, forcing a jump ball that gave 6A possession while ahead, 81-78, coming up with two subsequent steals and a key rebound after the lead was cut to one with 10.6 seconds left.
Before covid-19 struck, Groetsch would get the morning custodian at North Allegheny to open up the gym early so she could get in a workout before classes began.
“With the covid and remote learning, I didn’t do that much at the school and I worked out with my dad,” Groetsch said. “I worked out at home when I had a remote study hall.”
North Allegheny compiled a 103-8 record with Groetsch on the roster.
Pinkney had 17 points to lead 5A, while Trinity’s Dahlquist had 14. Plum’s Kennedie Montue, two-time Valley News Dispatch Player of the Year, had eight in her final game.
District 10 74, Class 4A 64
District 10’s girls dominated much of the way behind co-MVPs Becca Santom of Grove City, who scored 17 points and Emina Selimonic from Erie McDowell who scored 15, set the pace. For Class 4A, MVP Jolie Strati of Blackhawk took game-high honors with 20 points while Nevaeh Ewing of Knoch chipped in with 14.
Class 4A 98, District 10 97
It’s been a pretty good weekend for Rochester’s Devon Hemer at the Roundball Classic.
First, he was the Class A MVP Thursday night in the weekend’s opener. Saturday, he was the co-MVP for the Class 4A boys, coming up with the game-winning shot with 5 seconds to go as the 4A boys defeated District 10, 98-97.
Rochester High School, Class A for many years, hasn’t experienced a surge in enrollment over the past few days. Instead, tournament director Allen Deep asked Hemer if he’d like to come back and play for the 4A team, victim of several injuries.
“It’s amazing. Something like this has never happened to me before,” Hemer said. “But, hey, I came out and got it. Mr. Deep asked me after my first game if I wanted to play another one. I didn’t want to turn that down, playing with guys from the bigger schools.”
During the season, Hemer was a major factor in Rochester making the Class A finals against Bishop Canevin.
Sharing MVP honors late Saturday afternoon was Lincoln Park’s Dakari Bradford, who scored 19 points. Hemer, who is undecided on a college to attend in the fall, had 17 and two key rebounds in the final moments.
For District 10, Aaron Collins of Erie First was named his team’s MVP after garnering game-high scoring honors with 23 points.
Class 5A 141, Class 6A 132
With the end of his high school career just a few minutes away, Penn Hills senior Wes Kropp came up big one more time.
Kropp scored four field goals down the stretch as the Class 5A boys erased an early double-digit deficit to down the Class 6A team, 141-132, to cap a day of four all-star games at Geneva College.
Kropp scored 22 points and Penn Hills teammate Eddie Daniels added 18 to the 5A barrage. Kropp was named co-MVP along with Trinity’s Michael Dunn.
“I was trying to make a statement,” Kropp said. “I told my teammates this is an all-star game and we’re not getting enough dunks, so I decided to come down and get a little dunk.”
Even Dunn, more well-known for 3-pointers, also got into the dunking action late.
Cole Brooks of Seneca Valley scored a game-high 25 points and was named a co-MVP for the 6A team along with North Allegheny’s Greg Habib, who poured in 22.
Kropp will be heading to Meadville in the fall to play at Allegheny College.
“This was fun seeing everyone having fun and living their dreams,” Kropp added. “We made the playoffs every year. Now, I’m ready to move on.”
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