TJ notebook: Alyssa DeAngelo hits 1,000-point milestone

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Tuesday, January 28, 2020 | 11:13 AM


Thomas Jefferson senior Alyssa DeAngelo scored her 1,000th career point Jan. 13 in a section game at Trinity.

DeAngelo, a multiple-year starter who averages 18 points per game, reached the milestone with 2 minutes, 15 seconds remaining in the second quarter of her team’s 61-50 loss to the Hillers.

After high school, she plans to continue her career and major in nursing at Fairmont State.

“It sounds cliche, but from the moment I stepped onto campus, I knew it was where I was meant to be,” DeAngelo said. “The coaches knew they wanted me from the start and never had any doubts about me as a person or a player. It was also the perfect fit for my major.”

The 5-foot-10 DeAngelo, a sharpshooting backcourt player, was honored Jan. 16 at TJ’s home game against Moon.

TJ girls making strides

As might have been expected, the Thomas Jefferson girls basketball team started slowly this season.

Three senior backcourt players from last year’s WPIAL runner-up squad — Jenna Clark, another 1,000-point career scorer and Yale recruit, Shaylor Williams and Julia Shearn — graduated.

The Jaguars lost a 57-45 decision to Peters Township in a tip-off tournament, then won six in a row and nine of their next 10 games.

“I feel we are starting to get into a rhythm, and we are getting better each game,” senior forward Dalaney Ranallo said. “We just have to minimize the mental mistakes and turnovers. There is a long way to go this season.”

DeAngelo said the Jaguars have shown progress since the start of the season.

“We had a rough game in the tip-off, but it made us stronger as a team,” she said. “There’s definitely been some growing pains, but I feel we’ve prepared ourselves for the games ahead.”

Clinic for a cause

The TJ girls teamed up with Larry Ross and All-State Insurance to raise funds and collect toys for the Toys for Tots program again this year. Coach Lisa Fairman and assistant Skyler Meier coordinated a free youth basketball clinic in early December.

“Lisa and I put it together with the help of our boosters,” Meier said. “Lisa did most of the contacting by coordinating with the school and Larry. The whole team participated.”

About 150 area youngsters in kindergarten to eighth grade participated in the event, which consisted of dribbling, shooting, games and refreshments, as well as a visit from Santa.

“We sent out some flyers about a week before this event,” Meier said. “It was planned last minute, but we wanted to do something for Larry and Toys for Tots and also have a clinic for the kids in the new gym. We weren’t sure how many we would have because we didn’t have actual sign-ups since the clinic was free if the participants brought a toy.

“They worked out with our team and coaches in 10 different stations. It was a great night and a great turnout. It was awesome.”

TJ boys handle schedule

The boys basketball team played four games in eight days at the start of 2020.

The Jaguars won all four, defeating Montour, 57-54; Trinity, 64-61; Ringgold, 64-58; and Moon, 59-50, to climb the ranks in Section 2-5A.

“We finally got a day off (on Jan. 11),” coach Dom DeCicco said. “Our kids have been battling every game. I think what has been our constant has been our defense. Even when we are struggling offensively, our defense has shown up every night. When you play good defense, you always have a chance.”

Senior G/F Isaac McNeil scored in double figures in all four games, 49 points total. Shane Stump, also a senior G/F, scored 26 against Trinity, 17 against Ringgold and 14 against Montour.

Senior guard Noah Pierce also had three double-digit games, including a team-high 18-point performance against Moon. Junior guard Jake Pugh chipped in with 10 at Montour.

Memorable season

One of the best seasons in TJ boys basketball history was 2013-14, when the Jaguars went 23-4.

The team was loaded with experience with 11 seniors, consisting of guards Steven Andros, Ben Miscavage, Dan Terpin, Zach Talley, Zach Michak and Zach Good; forwards Christian Breisinger, Jason Horan, Charlie Scharbo (G/F) and Eric Fairman; and center Chase Winovich.

Four juniors, guards Frank Gentille and Cam Sarber, G/F Russ Seiss and forward Frankie Langdon; and two sophomores, C.J. Mason (G) and Steve Dunlap (F), rounded out the squad.

Stump’s final numbers

Senior QB Shane Stump attempted 223 passes for the WPIAL and PIAA Class 5A champions in 2019, completing 130 for 2,664 yards and 36 touchdowns.

Stump threw just one interception, in the season-opener at Canon-McMillan. (He hit on 11 of 23 passes for 294 yards and four TDs in that game).

Over the next 15 games — all wins — Stump attempted 200 consecutive passes without tossing an interception.

For his career, Stump, the Big 8 Conference Offensive Player of the Year in 2019, completed 303 of 556 passes for 6,105 yards and 84 touchdowns.

He broke team records for yards passing in a season (2,664), career passing yards (6,105), career touchdown passes (84) and, possibly, three others: career pass completions (303), career pass attempts (556) and fewest interceptions in a season (1).

Hockey all-stars

Five players from the TJ hockey team were chosen to participate in the PIHL All-Star Game: goaltender Luke Ripepi and forwards Hunter Fairman, Eddie Pazo, Riley Holzer and Will O’Brien. All five are juniors.

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