Westmoreland boys basketball notebook: Belle Vernon’s Quinton Martin flashes potential

Thursday, December 23, 2021 | 6:42 PM

Quinton Martin will be one of the most sought-after football recruits in the Class of 2024.

But the uber-athletic sophomore from Belle Vernon is showing he is pretty good at basketball, too.

The 6-foot-3 forward is fast becoming a scoring threat with consistent double-double potential.

Watch him grab a rebound on the defensive end, get an outlet to senior point guard Devin Whitlock and sprint to the other end to finish a break.

His leaping ability alone is worth the price of admission. It leads to dunks and blocks as well.

“He’s the best athlete in the WPIAL,” said Hempfield coach Bill Swan, whose Spartans were edged by Belle Vernon, 83-77, in overtime Saturday. Martin had 23 points and 16 rebounds in the win to complement Whitlock’s 39-point game.

Belle Vernon played Martin in junior varsity and varsity games last year to get him back into the basketball form after football season.

“Quinton is doing some good things,” Belle Vernon coach Joe Salvino said. “But he is also doing some things we need him to clean up and work on.”

Martin had 28 points and 11 rebounds against Mt. Pleasant, and he scored 21 in a win over McKeesport.

WCCA parity

Classification did not mean much in last week’s 3rd Westmoreland County Coaches Association Showcase played at Hempfield and Jeannette.

In five of the eight games, teams from lower classes won. Ligonier Valley (3A) defeated Greensburg Salem (6A), 81-57; Greensburg Central Catholic (2A) topped Norwin (6A), 68-45; Monessen (2A) beat Mt. Pleasant (4A), 58-44; Belle Vernon (4A) clipped Hempfield (6A), 83-77 in overtime; and Jeannette (2A) topped Latrobe (5A), 66-59

GCC postponement

TikTok threats that closed schools across the country last Friday forced the cancellation of a notable nonsection game.

Sewickley Academy was supposed to play at No. 2 Greensburg Central Catholic in a Class 2A clash, but GCC did not have school so the game was postponed.

A makeup date has not been announced.

Holiday tournament time

Penn-Trafford and Franklin Regional are not in the same section or classification, but the teams will play twice this season.

Franklin Regional is set to take on the host Warriors at 5 p.m. Wednesday on the second day of the Penn-Trafford tournament.

The Panthers topped the Warriors, 53-47, in the Mike Rettger Tournament on Dec. 13.

The first-day matchups at Penn-Trafford have Franklin Regional playing Upper St. Clair at 1 p.m. Tuesday, followed by McKeesport playing the Warriors at 3 p.m.

On Wednesday, McKeesport takes on Upper St. Clair at 1 p.m.

Another notable local tournament will be at Greensburg Salem. On Wednesday, Mt. Pleasant faces Greensburg Central Catholic at 3 p.m.; Connellsville plays Jeannette at 4:45; Bishop Guilfoyle takes on Hempfield at 6:30; and Riverview plays Greensburg Salem at 8:15.

The Golden Lions will honor former coach Paul Sapotichne on Wednesday. He coached the Golden Lions for 29 years and posted 399 wins. He led Riverview for the last six seasons.

Thursday’s matchups are: Hempfield vs. Connellsville (3 p.m.); GCC-Bishop Guilfoyle (4:45); Jeannette-Riverview (6:30); and Mt. Pleasant-Greensburg Salem (8:15).

Pulling rank

Three Westmoreland teams are in the TribLive HSSN rankings this week.

Belle Vernon stayed at No. 3 in Class 4A, and Greensburg Central Catholic remained No. 2. In 2A, Jeannette moved up a spot to No. 4.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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