Westmoreland County girls basketball notebook: Norwin tops Class 6A poll

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Wednesday, December 21, 2022 | 6:01 AM


There is a new No. 1 in WPIAL Class 6A girls basketball.

Undefeated Norwin surged into the top spot after some impressive wins over other ranked teams.

Norwin (6-0), which began the season at No. 4, knocked off Class 4A No. 1 South Fayette (43-40), 4A No. 2 Indiana (47-28), 6A No. 3 Mt. Lebanon (50-23) and 5A No. 4 Latrobe (59-21).

The schedule will not relent. Norwin plays District 10 power Kennedy Catholic, 5A No. 2 McKeesport and 4A No. 2 North Catholic this month before opening Section 1 play against 6A No. 3 North Allegheny on Jan. 2.

Penn-Trafford and Greensburg Salem also cracked the TribLive HSSN rankings for the first time, with Penn-Trafford taking over the No. 4 spot in Class 5A, and the Golden Lions are No. 4 in 4A.

Greensburg Central Catholic remained at No. 2 in Class 2A.

Holiday tournament time

A number of local teams will take part in tournaments during the holiday break.

Mt. Pleasant, Latrobe and Hempfield will host two-day tournaments.

Mt. Pleasant’s will be Tuesday and Wednesday. Opening matchups are Uniontown vs. Greensburg Salem at 5:30 and Brownsville-Mt. Pleasant at 7.

At the six-team Latrobe Tournament on Wednesday, opening games include McLean (Va.) vs. Peters Township at 5 p.m., Indiana vs. Bethel Park at 6:30 and Plum vs. Latrobe at 8.

On Thursday, Latrobe will play McLean at 8 p.m. McLean is coached by Latrobe’s all-time leading scorer, Jen Sobota.

A 1999 graduate, Sobota scored 2,093 points. She also had more than 700 assists and 400 steals before playing at William & Mary, where she scored over 1,000 points.

Hempfield’s tournament also features six teams. On Wednesday, River Valley plays Connellsville at 4 p.m., Seton LaSalle will play Franklin Regional at 5:30, and Yough takes on Hempfield at 7.

Thirty-something

Mt. Pleasant senior forward Tiffany Zelmore has three straight 30-plus-point games.

After scoring a career-high 38 against Southmoreland, she had 36 in a 61-59 win over McGuffey, then followed with 31 in a 53-42 overtime loss to South Allegheny.

That makes nine games of 30 or more points in Zelmore’s career with four of them coming this year.

She recently went over 1,000 points for her career.

Snyder returns

Latrobe junior point guard Elle Snyder returned to the lineup for the first time this season.

She had not played as she rested an ankle injury from volleyball season.

Snyder scored 10 points but the Wildcats, who lost standout center Emma Blair to a season-ending knee injury, lost to Oakland Catholic, 59-39.

Party of 2

Last year, Derry coach Gene Brisbane worked games solo because he did not have any assistant coaches.

He had people in mind, but they could not get teaching jobs in the district, so they went elsewhere. He was stuck coaching eight girls all by his lonesome.

This year, though, he has some help.

Rachel Garris, who played for Brisbane at Westmoreland County Community College, is an assistant for the Trojans. She is a Derry alum.

When Brisbane took over at Derry four years ago, he hired Lauren Felix, who also was a Derry graduate and played for him at WCCC.

Make-up game

Greensburg Central Catholic played at Monessen on Tuesday. The game was postponed two weeks ago so Monessen players could attend the funeral of football player Ari Altimore, who was shot and killed in November.

GCC (6-1) won, 55-29, as Avery Davis, Mya Morgan and Erica Gribble all scored 11 points.

He said it

“In boys’ games, it’s dunks. In girls’ games, it’s the 3-pointer that gets everyone going.” — Greensburg Salem coach Rick Klimchock

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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