Westmoreland Athletes of the Week: Southmoreland’s Riley Comforti, Monessen’s Qitarah Hardison

Tuesday, January 21, 2020 | 6:14 PM

Riley Comforti

School: Southmoreland

Sport: Basketball

Class: Senior

Claim to fame: Comforti, who is averaging 22.2 points and 7.1 rebounds this season, scored 31 points to lead Southmoreland (6-10, 3-3) to a 54-49 win over Frazier in Section 4-3A action Jan. 14. Comforti scored 26 points for the Scotties in a 74-59 win over Geibel in nonsection play Jan. 16. Comforti finished the week with a 17-point performance in a 53-52 win over Elizabeth Forward in nonsection play Friday.

“I had a pretty good week. We started off slow this season as a team, but as a whole, in general, we have come around,” Comforti said.

What are your college plans for next year and why?

I’m not totally sure. I have a couple of schools looking at me for football, like Alderson Broaddus, Seton Hill and Allegheny. I have Penn State Fayette looking at me for basketball. My education is the most important thing. I need to focus on getting a career out of it.

What has been the biggest key to the team’s four-game winning streak?

Confidence is the biggest thing. We have to believe that we can win. Coach tells us what we need to do, has a good scheme and we got to follow it.

What would it mean to you to reach 1,000 points in your career?

It would be an honor to see my name along all their names up in the gym. To follow in their footsteps is awesome.

What’s your favorite sport, football or basketball, and why?

Basketball. There are so many aspects to it. You can be a scorer, play defense or rebound. You can find a way to contribute. Although, football is right behind.

If you were able to meet anyone in history, who would it be and why?

I would talk to Kobe Bryant about his mentality. I remember watching him play. He was killer on the court.

Qitarah Hardison

School: Monessen

Sport: Basketball

Class: Senior

Claim to fame: Hardison, who was averaging 13.2 points and 11.8 rebounds heading into last week, recorded her eighth consecutive double-double with 20 points and 12 rebounds to lead Monessen (10-4, 4-2) to a 65-21 win over Mapletown in Section 2-A action Jan. 13.During her streak, Hardison had 16-rebound games against Propel Andrew Street and Jefferson Morgan. Hardison scored 22 points in a win over Class 3A West Mifflin on Dec. 29.

“This past week, I felt I had a good week playing against Mapletown and West Greene. I didn’t start the season good, but I’ve started to get better,” Hardison said.

What are your college plans for next year and why?

I haven’t decided where I want to go to play basketball. I’m looking at Clarion and Pitt.

What has been the key to your personal success this season?

I feel like my coach has really helped me out this year between this year and last year.

What can the team learn from the two recent losses to Charleroi and West Greene?

Against Charleroi, we felt like we were going to go there and beat them, but we didn’t expect some things. We wanted to go out to beat West Greene. We fought and kept it close until the fourth quarter, but we let it slip away.

How have things been different in the second year under Janine Vertacnik?

We wanted to make playoffs last year, but we blew it. I think we wanted it way more this year.

If you had a chance to meet anyone, who would it be and why?

Brittney Griner or Maya Moore. They are both outstanding players.

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