Westmoreland high school notebook: Znavor takes over Yough girls basketball team

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Sunday, September 17, 2023 | 6:31 PM


Brian Znavor is the new girls basketball coach at Yough.

A Norwin graduate, Znavor was the Yough boys basketball coach in the early 2000s, taking over that position when he was 23.

He coached the Cougars’ all-time scoring leader, Ben McCauley, who went on to play at N.C. State and is still playing professionally overseas.

Znavor later coached the Elizabeth Forward boys.

A technology education teacher at Yough, Znavor was a talented two-sport athlete at Norwin, in basketball and football. In fact, he earned the Kass Kovalchik Award as the school’s top male athlete in 1995.

He attended Cal (Pa.).

Znavor also coached Norwin’s ninth grade and junior varsity boys basketball teams.

Yough still is searching for an athletic director after the resignation of Bill Flow.

Record for Spartans

Hempfield’s senior golfers will have something to remember from their final prep season.

The Spartans broke the team scoring record when they defeated Armstrong, 190-227, last Monday at Greensburg Country Club.

Caleb Prola shot 36, Caden Biondi 37, Jace Vickers 38 and Adam Hess 39 as the team took down the previous mark of 198 set in 2021 against Greensburg Central Catholic.

Hempfield has been playing at Greensburg Country Club for only four years. The 190 is 15-over-par.

“Going low (Monday) was a result of increased focus for the seniors,” Spartans coach Bryan Spang said. “It was their last home match of their high school career, and they all wanted to go leaving an impression.”

Gee makes match play

Katie Miller Gee took a break from coaching the Hempfield girls golf team to play in a national tournament.

Gee advanced through stroke play and never trailed in her opening match at the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship at Stonewall Golf Club in Elverson before falling in the second round.

Gee, one of the school’s most celebrated champions and a WPIAL Hall of Famer, cruised past Marissa Mar of Palo Alto, Calif., 5 and 3, in the first round.

She fell to Lauren Greenlief, her former U.S. Amateur Four-Ball teammate, 3 and 2. Gee has reached match play in all eight of her Mid-Am appearances and made the quarterfinals in 2016 and ‘19.

It was her 18th appearance in a USGA event.

Tight match

The Hempfield girls golf team nearly broke Franklin Regional’s section winning streak, but the Panthers weren’t having it.

After the teams tied at 185 in their section match at Murrysville Golf Club, Franklin Regional (11-0) sent Ali Boyle, Cam Alexander and WCCA champion Gianna Johnson out for a playoff. The girls won on the second playoff hole to extend their section win streak to 40.

“Closest and most exciting match I’ve ever been a part of,” Panthers coach Kane Daignault said.

Volleyball ranks

Four county girls teams made the most recent Western Pennsylvania Volleyball Coaches Association rankings.

Penn-Trafford is No. 4 in Class 4A, Latrobe is tied with Knoch for No. 10 in 3A, Burrell is No. 6 in 2A and Greensburg Central Catholic No. 5 in single-A.

Burrell was not ranked the previous week.

Also, three local players were named players of the week: Elle Snyder of Latrobe (3A), Madeline Joyce of Kiski Area (3A), and Addy Seanor of Yough (2A).

Recruiting

Avery Davis, a senior at Greensburg Central Catholic, announced she will play at Division II Wheeling (W.Va.).

The 5-foot-8 shooting guard played a key role in GCC’s run to the WPIAL quarterfinals and PIAA Class 2A semifinals last season.

Belle Vernon softball standout Ava Zubovic committed to Mercyhurst, a Division II program in the PSAC.

A middle infielder, Zubovic hit .370 with four home runs and 25 RBIs last season for the WPIAL Class 4A champion.

• Norwin senior basketball player Ava Kobus will continue her playing career at Division III Allegheny.

Kobus, a 6-foot shooting guard, has shown a knack for delivering run-sparking 3-pointers for the Lady Knights, who made the WPIAL and PIAA semifinals last season.

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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