What to watch for in WPIAL sports on Dec. 6, 2023: Wrestling teams open dual meet schedules

Tuesday, December 5, 2023 | 11:56 PM

The Canon-McMillan wrestling team captured a WPIAL team championship in 1983. The Big Macs celebrated the 40th anniversary of that title by winning the 2023 Class 3A district crown last season.

The Burgettstown wrestling program won its first WPIAL 2A championship in 1974. Nearly 50 years later, they struck gold in 2023.

The Big Macs and Blue Devils will begin defense of their WPIAL titles with the opening of team competition on Wednesday.

Canon-McMillan has a tough nonsection opener, hosting perennial playoff team North Allegheny.

The Big Macs beat the Tigers in the 2022 3A quarterfinals, 43-24.

Burgettstown opens up its Section 1-2A schedule by hosting Washington.

Last season, the Blue Devils finished as section champs while the Little Prexies were winless in section duals.

Northern stars

Look north for some good district boys basketball action midweek.

Three contests stand out on the Wednesday hoops schedule and they are all north of the Allegheny County border.

Pine-Richland will christen its new gym with the first varsity boys basketball game as Shaler comes knocking in a battle of 6A and 5A powers.

The Rams opened their season on Monday with a 67-62 victory at Highlands while the Titans are already off to a 2-0 start with wins over Bethel Park and Highlands in the Shaler tip-off tournament.

North Catholic, meanwhile, will visit Seneca Valley.

The Trojans split games against out-of-town opponents at their own tipoff tourney, losing to Devon Prep while beating St. Joseph’s Collegiate of New York.

Seneca Valley also split in the North Hills tip-off tournament, losing to Hampton then beating Perry.

Finally, 2021 3A champion Ellwood City visits 2023 Class A runner-up Union.

This game features some elite talent with Joe Roth for the Wolverines and Braylon Thomas and Lucas Stanley for the Scotties.

New season, new hope

There were three WPIAL girls basketball teams that did not win a game last season. Two of them hit the hardwood Wednesday.

Jefferson-Morgan finished with an overall record last winter of 0-22.

However, it didn’t take the Rockets long to taste victory this season, winning their season opener over Carmichaels before falling to Beth-Center in the championship game of the Jefferson-Morgan tip-off tournament.

Jefferson-Morgan tries to make it two wins when it hosts Bentworth. The Bearcats lost their first two games last weekend.

New Brighton lost its last 11 games in 2021-2022 and all 19 games in 2022-2023.

After dropping their first three games this season, the Lions look to end a 33-game skid when they visit Hopewell. The Vikings are 1-2 this season.

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