Westmoreland boys basketball notebook: Local teams join Hoops For a Cure

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Thursday, February 3, 2022 | 6:33 PM


Allen Deep, who orchestrates a number of in-season charity showcases and the annual Roundball Classic after the basketball season, has two more events lined up for this weekend.

Greensburg Central Catholic’s boys and girls, and the Belle Vernon boys, will participate.

Both 10-game events will be Saturday and Sunday and are part of the Hoops For A Cure initiative.

The “Ramp ‘N Rize Rumble” will be played at Sewickley Academy. The GCC girls play Saturday.

Saturday’s schedule: Avonworth vs. Eden Christian (boys), 2 p.m.; South Side Beaver vs. Sewickley Academy (boys), 3:30; Laurel vs. Greensburg CC (girls), 5; Burrell vs. New Castle (boys), 6:30; and Obama Academy vs. Quaker Valley (boys), 8.

On Sunday, it will be Our Lady of the Sacred Heart vs, Sewickley Academy (girls), 1:30; Avonworth vs. Rochester (girls), 3; Sto-Rox vs. Rochester (boys), 4:30; Our Savior Lutheran (N.Y.) vs. Carolina Academy (N.C.) (boys), 6; and Aliquippa vs. Lincoln Park (boys), 7:30.

The “Invitational at North Allegheny” begins Saturday, and the Centurions and Leopards boys play Sunday.

Other Saturday matchups: Oakland Catholic vs. North Allegheny (girls), 1:30 p.m.; Brentwood vs. Hampton (girls), 1:30; Fairview vs. Hampton (boys), 3; Carolina Academy (N.C.) vs. Keystone Academy (boys), 4:30; ISA Academy (Ohio) vs. Our Savior Lutheran (N.Y.) (boys), 6’ Albert Gallatin vs. North Allegheny (boys), 7:30.

Sunday: Winchester Thurston vs. Aquinas Academy (boys), 3; Bishop Canevin vs. Greensburg CC (boys), 4:30; McKeesport vs. Highlands (boys), 6; and Belle Vernon vs. Montour (boys), 7:30.

GCC is ranked No. 2 in 2A and Bishop Canevin is No. 1 in Class A. Belle Vernon is No. 2 in 4A and Montour is No. 5.

Williams, for 1,000

Senior Brevan Williams became the latest player at Greensburg Central Catholic to score 1,000 career points.

Williams, a 6-foot-3 swingman who averages 21 points, eclipsed the milestone Tuesday in a home win over Propel Braddock Hills. He had 19 to push his total to 1,004.

He is the first player at GCC to score 1,000 since Geoff Helm in 2019.

A Mt. Pleasant native, Williams was last year’s Trib Westmoreland player of the year.

Slam ball

Belle Vernon sophomore Quinton Martin made the cut twice for hudl.com’s top five dunks in Pennsylvania, a weekly breakdown of highlight jams.

Martin’s alley-oop in late December at Charleroi was No. 2 on the final top five of 2021, and his blast-off slam against Southmoreland was the No. 1 pick for the week of Jan. 23.

The alley-oop came on an inbounds play from under the basket. Senior point guard Devin Whitlock put perfect touch on the lob pass, and Martin, who seems unstoppable when he gets a running start, bursted into frame for the finish.

The Southmoreland dunk saw Martin enter a fast break, take a touch pass from the foul line and take off for a dunk over a defender.

Martin and Whitlock have been an alley-oop combo for two years.

Pull-ups

Something that has become somewhat of a lost art, the mid-range jumper, is still around at a few local schools.

A few area guards use it as a weapon. Greensburg Central Catholic sophomore Tyree Turner, Norwin junior Adam Bilinsky and Ligonier Valley senior Matthew Marinchak like to drive the lane and pull up from the foul line area.

“I have made it a point to attack more,” Tyree said. “I don’t want to settle on 3-pointers. Until I get my outside shot going I’m more effective attacking the defense … The mid-range jump shot helps me avoid offensive fouls and put pressure on the defense.”

Franklin Regional senior guard Caden Smith also uses a mid-range jumper.

“I am playing the two-guard now instead of the point, where I was more of a facilitator for other guys,” Smith said. “I am still getting used to it.”

Like Whitlock, Turner has a high floating shot he uses on occasion.

Bilinsky’s older brother, Ty, now at Pitt-Johnstown, also had a pull-up jumper in his arsenal.

Playoff clinchings

There are a lot more local boys teams competing for playoff spots as the regular season winds into its final week than those that have clinched , but here are the area qualifiers so far: Burrell and Belle Vernon in Class 4A, Ligonier Valley in 3A and Greensburg Central Catholic and Monessen in Class A.

North Catholic coming to town

Norwin will host North Catholic in a girls-boys doubleheader Saturday.

The girls will tip at noon, with the boys game at 1:30.

North Catholic is No. 1 in Class 3A, and Norwin is No. 4 in 6A.

The North Catholic boys are No. 3 in 4A. The Trojans are coached by Jim Rocco, the former coach at Penn-Trafford who still lives in the area.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a TribLive reporter covering local sports in Westmoreland County. He can be reached at bbeckner@triblive.com.

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