What to look for in WPIAL Sport on 18th March 2023: New Castle, Reading meet in the State Playoffs for the first time

By: Don Rebel

Friday March 17, 2023 | 11:54 p.m

Andrew Palla | For the Tribune review

New Castle’s Jonathan Anderson (12) scores during a PIAA playoff game against Erie on Saturday March 11, 2023 at New Castle High School.

Two State Boys basketball forces will clash for the first time in the PIAA postseason on Saturday afternoon when New Castle takes on District 3 champions Reading.

The Red Hurricanes are seeking their 50th all-time playoff win (49-24) when they meet the Red Knights at 2 p.m. in Altoona

With all their wins, New Castle has only one PIAA tournament win against a District 3 opponent.

That happened last year when the ‘Canes defeated Northeastern York 63-50 in the first round.

New Castle was down 2-0 against D-3 teams in the postseason before that win.

They lost to Harrisburg 69-53 in the 1998 Class 4A State Championship Game and fell to Bishop McDevitt 77-68 in the 2016 Quarterfinals.

Co-champions collide

One was a co-champion in Section 1-3A, the other shared a title in Section 3-3A.

Now they’re colliding, one step away from the PIAA’s Final Four.

Neshannock (20-7) has enjoyed six-game and seven-game winning streaks this season. After losing 53-50 to reigning district champion Our Lady of the Sacred Heart in the WPIAL semifinals, the Lancers have won their first two state playoff games by a six-point margin over Oil City and Brookville.

Deer Lakes (19-8) defeated OLSH to win his first WPIAL championship two weeks ago and has eliminated Seneca and Loyalsock Township to extend his postseason winning streak to six games.

The teams meet in North Allegheny at noon for the Quarterfinals of the PIAA 3A.

Finally they meet

When the WPIAL playoff brackets were announced in mid-February, Aliquippa was the top seed and defending champion Bishop Canevin was the #2 seed.

A showdown between the Section 1-2A and Section 2-2A champions never happened in the district playoffs, however, as BC lost 63-54 to Northgate in the semifinals.

After two victories in the state playoffs, however, the showdown between the Quips and the Crusaders finally occurs at 1:30 p.m. in Peters Township

Eagles vs. Tigers: Take 4

McKeesport’s girls’ basketball program has had an incredible season, winning 23 of 28 games.

However, the Tigers have no district gold and no section crown for all their success thanks to one team, Section 3-5A foe Oakland Catholic (24-4).

The Tigers lost their two group games to the Eagles and finished two games behind them overall.

The third time was no appeal for McKeesport as they again lost to Oakland Catholic 58-51 in the WPIAL semifinals.

The fourth meeting of the year between the two 5A powerhouses is at 12pm in Peters Township.

In the girls’ other 5A quarterfinal game on the “west” side of the bracket on Saturday, WPIAL champion South Fayette (26-2) will take on District 10 champion Erie Cathedral Prep at 1:00 p.m. in Sharon

WPIAL Finalists vs District Champions

The two finalists from the WPIAL 4A girls basketball playoffs are still alive and about to advance to the state quarterfinals.

Now they are up against two district champions.

District 7 winner North Catholic (24-3) will go on an 18-game winning streak against District 3 champion Wyomissing (28-2) at 2:00 p.m. Saturday at the Bald Eagle

WPIAL runner-up Blackhawk (23-4) meets District 10 champion Fairview (21-8) at 2:30 p.m. in Sharon.

Blackhawk and Camp Hill Trinity are the only teams in 4A not to win their district championship.

District champions survive

In the girls’ Class A basketball playoffs, only district champions remain on the west side of the state bracket.

There will be WPIAL vs District 6 and District 5 vs District 9.

Union (20-6) is the only team from District 7 left in the group. The WPIAL champions defeated two teams from District 9 in Clarion and Elk County Catholic.

The Scotties were defensive, allowing just 44 points in their two wins combined.

They face a team from Williamsburg (28-1) who beat WPIAL’s St. Joseph by 46 points in the first round.

The game is at 1 p.m. in Armstrong

The other game has Berlin-Brothersvalley from D-5 against Otto-Eldred from D-9.

last swim

Saturday is the final day of the 2023 PIAA Class 3A Swimming and Diving Championships at Bucknell University.

Saturday begins with five heats starting at 8:10 a.m. for the 3A girls and 10:45 a.m. for the 3A boys.

The consolation and finals in these disciplines will take place at 3:25 p.m. for girls and 6:05 p.m. for boys.

Boys 3A Diving Championships are scheduled for 12:35 p.m


Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *