Six District 9 teams will be in action in the second round of the PIAA playoffs Tuesday and Wednesday.
(Photo of Kane’s Ella Marconi and C-L’s Ian Callen. Marconi photo by Tessa Boschert and Callen photo by Jared Bakaysa)
CLASS 2A GIRLS
(9-1) KANE VS. (7-2) BRENTWOOD
When and Where: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 12, at Punxsutawney High School
Winner Gets: Winner of game between (6-2) Juniata Valley and (10-1) West Middlesex, which is being played at 6 p.m. March 12 at Punxsutawney High School, in the quarterfinals Friday, March 15, at a site and time to be announced.
Records: Kane 24-3; Brentwood 20-4
How They Got Here: Kane won the District 9 title and then beat (10-4) Saegertown, 45-29, in the PIAA first round; Brentwood lost to OLSH in the WPIAL title game then beat (6-3) Penns Manor, 53-38, in the PIAA first round.
Kane Leading Scorers: Ella Marconi (23.0 ppg), Hannah Buhl (9.5 ppg), Emily Bucheit (8.2 ppg)
Brentwood Leading Scorers: Anna Betz (14.8 ppg)
Notes: Brentwood was in the WPIAL title game for the first time since 1994 and failed to win its first title since 1979 when it dropped a two-point decision, 50-48, to OLSH … Kane won its first-ever District 9 title this year … Marconi is a 1,000-point, 1,000-rebound player who has 1,694 career points and is the leading scorer in District 9 this season … The Lady Wolves have been under the direction of Kerry Wolbert the last couple of games after head coach Dave Kiehl suffered a heart attack right after Kane beat Clarion in the District 9 semifinals. Kiehl seems to be recovering nicely and was the Lady Wolves PIAA playoff win Friday, although he wasn’t coaching.
(9-2) A-C VALLEY VS. (7-1) OUR LADY OF SACRED HEART (OLSH)
When and Where: 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 12, at Armstrong High School
Winner Gets: Winner of game between (7-3) Bishop Canevin and (5-1) Everett, which is being played at 6 p.m. March 12 at Hempfield High School, in the quarterfinals Friday, March 15, at a site and time to be announced.
Records: A-C Valley 21-4; OLSH 22-4
How They Got Here: A-C Valley lost to Kane in the District 9 title game then beat (10-3) Cambridge Springs, 47-43, in the PIAA first round; OLSH won the WPIAL title and then beat (6-4) Blairsville, 63-43, in the PIAA first round.
A-C Valley Leading Scorers: Olivia Boocks (12.9 ppg), Cami McNany (12.8 ppg), Kylee Eaton (12.0 ppg)
OLSH Leading Scorers: Ashley Norling (18.2 ppg)
Notes: OLSH win in the WPIAL championship game was the 300th for head coach Don Eckerle. He now has 301 wins in 16 seasons at the Catholic School … The title was the first-ever WPIAL championship for OLSH … OLSH has some height with Norling, a senior, and Hannah Valenty, a junior, both checking in at 5-foot-11, and senior guard Maddie Hoff, coming in at 5-foot-8 … A-C Valley had never won a PIAA playoff game until winning a first-round matchup last season. The Lady Falcons are now 2-1 in PIAA play … Boocks missed last year’s District 9 and PIAA playoffs with a knee injury but came back this year and earned KSAC MVP honors.
CLASS 1A BOYS
(9-1) ELK COUNTY CATHOLIC VS. (7-2) VINCENTIAN ACADEMY
When and Where: 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 12, at Slippery Rock University
Winner Gets: Winner of game between (9-3) Clarion-Limestone vs. (7-3) Cornell, which is being played at 7:30 p.m. March 12 at Armstrong High School, in the quarterfinals Friday, March 15, at a site and time to be announced.
Records: ECC 27-1; Vincentian Academy 17-8
How They Got Here: ECC won the District 9 title and then beat (7-6) Leechburg, 65-41, in the PIAA first round; Vincentian Academy lost in the WPIAL title game to Nazareth Prep and then beat (6-3) St. Joseph’s Academy, 79-65, in the PIAA first round.
ECC Leading Scorers: Alex Breindel (12.9 ppg), Regis Wortman (12.5 ppg), Alec Wehler (8.1 ppg)
Vincentian Academy Leading Scorers: Angelo Reeves (17 ppg)
Notes: Reeves, the leading scorer, is a 6-foot-6 sophomore and is one of two 6-foot-6 kids in the starting lineup for the Royals, as junior Ethan Embleton also checks in at 6-6 for head coach Tim Tyree … The Royals are looking for their first trip to the quarterfinals since 2014 and just the fourth in school history … This is ECC’s 21st PIAA playoff appearance in the last 22 years and the Crusaders are 27-19 during that span including winning the PIAA 1A title in 2006. Overall, ECC is 42-37 in PIAA games … ECC was last in the quarterfinals in 2017 when it lost to Kennedy Catholic.
(9-3) CLARION-LIMESTONE VS. (7-3) CORNELL
When and Where: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 12, at Armstrong High School
Winner Gets: Winner of game between (9-1) Elk County Catholic vs. (7-2) Vincentian Academy, which is being played at 6 p.m. March 12 at Slippery Rock University, in the quarterfinals Friday, March 15, at a site and time to be announced.
Records: C-L 23-4; Cornell 20-5
How They Got Here: C-L lost to North Clarion in the District 9 semifinals before beating Johnsonburg in the D9 consolation game and then topping (6-1) Juniata Valley, 62-51, in the PIAA first round; Cornell lost to Nazareth Prep in the WPIAL semifinals and went into the PIAA playoffs as the third-place team out of the WPIAL thanks to that district’s follow-the-leader format when Nazareth Prep won the championship. Cornell then beat (5-2) Shanksville-Stonycreek, 56-50, in the PIAA first round.
C-L Leading Scorers: Deion Deas (20.2 ppg), Ian Callen (17.3 ppg), Hayden Callen (16.6 ppg)
Cornell Leading Scorers: Kaden Divito (26.1 ppg), Zaier Harrison (16.3 ppg), Isaiah Langston (14.5 ppg)
Notes: Divito is the second-leading scorer in the WPIAL behind Butler’s Ethan Morton (27.0 ppg) … Cornell averages over 70 points per game on the season (73.1 ppg) … The Raiders win over Shanksville Friday broke a five-game PIAA losing streak dating back to the 2000 semifinals … This is Cornell’s fourth PIAA appearance since 2010 … C-L has a pair of 1,000-point career scores in senior Ian Callen (1,282) and junior Deion Deas (1,066) and a third player, sophomore Hayden Callen (656) who could reach the mark next season … The Lions average 63.2 ppg … Ian Callen missed the first 11 games with an injury suffered in football season and C-L was 8-3 without him, but the Lions are 15-1 with him in the lineup with the only loss being a two-point loss to North Clarion in the D9 semifinals … C-L is back in the PIAA playoffs for the first time since reaching the quarterfinals in 2015. Prior to winning two PIAA games that year, you have to go back to 2002 for the last Lions state playoff win.
CLASS 2A BOYS
(9-1) RIDGWAY VS. (10-2) WILMINGTON
When and Where: 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 13, at DuBois High School
Winner Gets: Winner of game between (7-1) OLSH vs. (10-3) Lakeview, which is being played at 6 p.m. March 13 at New Castle High School, in the quarterfinals Saturday, March 16, at a site and time to be announced.
Records: Ridgway 25-3; Wilmington 17-8
How They Got Here: Ridgway won the District 9 title and then beat (7-4) Sewickley Academy, 60-51, in the PIAA first round; Wilmington lost to Farrell in the District 10 title game and then beat (9-3) Keystone, 42-24, in the PIAA first round.
Ridgway Leading Scorers: Jake Reynolds (11.3 ppg), Will Thompson (11.2 ppg), Matt Dush (9.5 ppg), Daunte Allegretto (9.3 ppg)
Wilmington Leading Scorers: Tage Kelliher (11.6 ppg), Daniel Hanssen (11.4 ppg), Robert Pintous (9.1 ppg), Jacob Yohman (7.9 ppg), Colton Richards (8.2 ppg)
Notes: This is a rematch of sorts from football season when Wilmington beat Ridgway in Class 2A. That was a bit different considering about half of the Elkers football team is made up of kids from Johnsonburg … With some of its players still either playing football or in football mode, Wilmington started slowly going just 1-3 through Dec. 18 and 4-4 through the New Year. But after losing back-to-back games Jan. 11 and Jan. 12, the Greyhounds have rolled off 11 wins in their last 13 games with the only two losses coming to Farrell, who is still playing … Wilmington is making its third straight appearance in the PIAA playoffs and is 2-2 over the past three years. Prior to 2017, the Greyhounds only other PIAA appearance was in 1987 when they reached the quarterfinals in 2A … Ridgway is in the PIAA postseason for the seventh time in the last eight years and is looking for its third quarterfinal appearance in that span … The Elkers are the top defensive team in District allowing 37.6 ppg.
(9-2) COUDERSPORT VS. (6-1) BISHOP GUILFOYLE
When and Where: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 13, at DuBois High School
Winner Gets: Winner of game between (10-1) Farrell vs. (7-2) Serra Catholic, which is being played at 6 p.m. March 13 at Slippery Rock University, in the quarterfinals Saturday, March 16, at a site and time to be announced.
Records: Coudersport 24-2; Bishop Guilfoyle (24-2)
How They Got Here: Coudersport lost to Ridgway in the District 9 title game and then beat South Side Beaver, 73-70, in the PIAA first round; Bishop Guilfoyle won the District 6 title and then beat (7-6) Sto-Rox, 100-64, in the PIAA first round.
Coudersport Leading Scorers: Owen Chambers
Bishop Guilfoyle Leading Scorers: Luke Ruggery (senior headed to St. Francis, Pa., next season; has scored over 1,000 career points and was an all-state performer as a junior)
Notes: Bishop Guilfoyle’s 36-point win over Sto-Rox was the most lopsided PIAA victory in school history, according to the Altoona Mirror … The Marauders are looking to make a quarterfinal appearance for the first time since 1997 … Chambers is just 18 points shy of tying the District 9 all-time scoring record of 2,557 points set by Johnsonburg’s Calvin Grumley in 2007. Chambers has 2,239 career tallies, the second most in District 9 history. He is the fifth District 9 players to score 2,000 career points … The Falcons last made the quarterfinals in 2008.