OLSH girls get defensive in WPIAL Class 2A 1st-round win

Thursday, February 14, 2019 | 1:30 AM

Our Lady of the Sacred Heart had some struggles offensively against Burgettstown on Friday in the opening round of the WPIAL Class 2A girls basketball playoffs.

But the No. 4-seeded Chargers’ defense was in championship form as they pulled away to a 50-30 victory at Peters Township.

“Boy, there was a lid on that hoop,” OLSH coach Don Eckerle. “I checked those stats at halftime, and we had forced 22 turnovers, but we just didn’t have much to show for it.”

The Chargers led 14-11 after one quarter.

The offensive woes for both teams continued in the second quarter when with 40 seconds left in the half, OLSH held an 18-16 lead before senior Maddie Hoff hit a 3-pointer and a layup before the buzzer to bump the OLSH lead to 23-16 after two.

OLSH started to slowly build on its lead in the second half but struggled to put Burgettstown away. Even when the Blue Devils avoided the Chargers’ trap and pressure defense, they couldn’t finish and never made a serious run, scoring only 14 second-half points.

“We like the full court pressure,” Eckerle said. “We kind of settled into some of the things we like to do, and they really struggled to get into the offensive sets.”

Hoff led all scorers with 20 points for OLSH, while leading scorer Ashley Norling did it all with points, assists, rebounds, blocks and steals.

“She is the complete package,” Eckerle said. “This wasn’t her greatest shooting night, but you saw the variety of shots and the amount of opportunities she gets for herself.”

Sophomore Avery Havelka led Burgettstown with nine points on three 3-pointers, as the Blue Devils’ season ended with a 12-11 record.

OLSH improved to 18-4 with its 13th win in 14 games. The Chargers advance to face Serra Catholic in the Class 2A quarterfinals Thursday at a time and site to be determined.

Don Rebel hosts the Rebel Yell podcasts for HSSN.

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