What to watch for in WPIAL sports on Jan. 19, 2024: Many games PPD but some contests still a go Friday

Thursday, January 18, 2024 | 11:00 PM

The second half of section play was set to begin in seven WPIAL boys basketball sections Friday.

However a snow storm through the area overnight and through the morning has forced a lot of the high school basketball schedule to be postponed.

While there are no head-to-head battles for first place Friday, there is one key section games with playoff positioning up for grabs.

In Section 1-3A, Beaver Falls (3-8) visits Riverside (5-10) with fourth place at stake.

The Tigers are alone in fourth place with a 3-3 section record while the Panthers are a game back at 2-4.

Beaver Falls picked up its first win of the season when it won at home over Riverside last month, 56-52.

A Tigers victory will give them a two-game edge in the fight for the final playoff spot.

Also in Section 1, Neshannock (5-1, 12-2) looks to bounce back after losing in the fight for first Tuesday to Mohawk. The Lancers will host a Freedom (0-5, 0-13) team still in search of their first win of the year.

Nonsection dandies

As we sit at the midway point of section play in WPIAL basketball, Friday still has a couple of nonsection hoops games still on the schedule.

Two Class 5A section leaders square off when Franklin Regional hosts Shaler.

The Panthers are 12-2 and tied with Gateway for first place in Section 3-5A, while the Titans are 14-1 and the front –runner in Section 2-5A.

A team tied for first place in 6A battles a district 5A finalist a year ago that sits in second place in their section.

Mt. Lebanon is set to visit Peters Township.

The Blue Devils are tied with Baldwin and Upper St. Clair for first place in Section 2-6A with an overall record of 12-2.

The Indians are 10-4 this season and are in second place behind Thomas Jefferson in Section 1-5A.

Peters Township will honor the 2023 Class 5A WPIAL and PIAA Indians football champions before the game.

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