Westmoreland high school basketball playoff preview capsules for Feb. 21, 2024

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Tuesday, February 20, 2024 | 11:01 AM


WPIAL basketball playoffs

Girls

Class 2A

Quarterfinals

9-Rochester (15-7) vs. 1-Greensburg Central Catholic (17-5)

6 p.m. Wednesday at Chartiers Valley

Winner plays: Winner of 12-South Side (14-9)/4-Fort Cherry (17-5) in semifinals Saturday (time, site TBD)

Coaches: CJ Iannini, Rochester; Chris Skatell, GCC

Players to watch: Tia Yellock, Rochester; Erica Gribble, GCC

Layup lines: Rochester held off No. 8 Burgettstown, a semifinalist last season, 49-38, in the first round. The Rams, who won three straight WPIAL Class A titles from 2019-21, are back in contention. They have won nine of their last 11 games. Yellock and Kamryn Newman are key scorers. The Rams don’t have a player over 5-foot-9, but they make up for it with leadership: Eight of their 13 players are seniors. … GCC steamrolled Northgate in the opener, 77-10, as Mya Morgan scored 20 points, Cara Dupilka added 16, Avery Davis 15 and Erica Gribble 12. Northgate had two field goals and didn’t score in the third quarter. GCC has reached the quarterfinals four straight seasons but has not broken through to the semifinals since 2016-17 or the finals since 2015-16. … The loser will move into the consolation bracket to play back for a PIAA playoff berth.

Boys

Class A

Quarterfinals

5-Union (13-10) vs. 4-Monessen (18-4)

6 p.m. Wednesday at Peters Township

Winner plays: Winner of 8-West Greene (16-7)/1-Imani Christian (11-10) in semifinals Saturday (time, site TBD)

Coaches: Mark Stanley, Union; Dan Bosnic, Monessen

Players to watch: Lucas Stanley, Union; Lorenzo Gardner, Monessen

Layup lines: Union opened the playoffs Thursday and defeated Hillel Academy, 67-43. Lucas Stanley scored 23 points, Braylon Thomas added 18 and Dayne Johnke had 11. The Scotties went 25-4 last season, losing to Imani Christian in the WPIAL title game and in the PIAA semifinals. … Monessen handled No. 13 Summit Academy in the first round, 78-56, as Gardner poured in a playoff career-high 44 points. Gardner, who had a 64-point game two weeks ago, now has 1,602 career points, the second most in program history. Monessen averages 65.5 points. … The loser will move into the consolation bracket to play back for a PIAA playoff berth.

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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