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GOING FOR GOLD: Nine D9 Girls Hoop Teams Gunning for State Glory

Thursday, March 9, 2023 @ 08:03 PM

Posted by Mike Kilroy

IMG_2023-2-20-161301CLARION, Pa. (EYT/D9) — Nine girls basketball teams representing District 9 will compete in the first round of the PIAA playoffs beginning Friday.

(Pictured above, Punxsutawney’s Chloe Presloid/submitted photo)


WHO: Monessen (17-6) at Otto-Eldred (23-2)
TIP-OFF: 3 p.m. Saturday
THE SKINNY: Monessen’s travel saga dominated the week. A social media post highlighted the team’s trouble in chartering a bus for the nearly eight-hour round-trip journey to Duke Center. Many stepped up, including the Pittsburgh Penguins, which offered to foot the bill. The Monessen school board turned down the offer and will pay instead for the charter. … Katie Sheeler, who is averaging more than 22 points per game, was named Northern Tier League MVP. … The Terrors won their first D9 title by knocking off Elk County Catholic, which had defeated them the year before.

WHO: Northern Bedford (17-8) vs. Elk County Catholic (23-4) at St. Marys High School
TIP-OFF: 2 p.m. Saturday
THE SKINNY: The Panthers are led by the junior tandem of Mariah Hall and Leah Swanseen, who score the majority of Northern Bedford’s points. … Meanwhile, the Crusaders, who fell to Otto-Eldred in the D9 title game, are balanced. Lucy Klawuhn leads the way at 10 ppg, followed by Syd Alexander (9 ppg), Tori Newton (8.5 ppg), and Emily Mourer (7 ppg). … All five starters for ECC are juniors.

WHO: DuBois Central Catholic (14-12) vs. Jamestown (5-18) at Mercer High School
TIP-OFF: 3 p.m. Saturday
THE SKINNY: Yes, that record for Jamestown is correct. The Muskies beat 2-20 Commodore Perry for the District 10 title. … Kayley Risser leads DCC at nearly 12 ppg. … The Cardinals downed North Clarion in the third-place consolation game to draw Jamestown.

WHO: North Clarion (20-6) vs. Berlin Brothersvalley (20-5) at Pitt-Johnstown
TIP-OFF: 2 p.m. Saturday
THE SKINNY: The District 5 champ Mountaineers won their first title since 2018-19 by beating Northern Bedford County, 58-31. … Berlin Brothersvalley senior Jenny Countryman and Seton Hill commit Grace Sechler lead the way for the Mountaineers. … North Clarion will again be without Lily Homan, a first-team all-KSAC selection, because of PIAA transfer rules. Homan played at Venango Catholic last season. … 6-foo-3 Lauren Lutz, a second-team all-KSAC selection, is averaging 10.3 points per game.

WHO: Clarion (11-14) at Union-New Castle (18-6)
TIP-OFF: 2 p.m. Saturday
THE SKINNY: The Bobcats fought their way into the PIAA bracket with consolation game wins over Ridgway and Port Allegany. … Sophie Babington, a second-team all-KSAC selection, leads Clarion in scoring at 10.2 points per game. … Taylor Alston, who was named to the KSAC third team, is putting up 9.3 points per night. … The Scotties, the District 7 champions, have won 11 games in a row. … Kelly Cleaver leads Union at 17.3 points per game. Kylie Fruehstorfer is pitching in 14.9 ppg.


WHO: Serra Catholic (18-4) at Redbank Valley (25-1)
TIP-OFF: 6 p.m. Friday
THE SKINNY: The third-seed Eagles were upset by No. 11 Aliquippa in the second round of the WPIAL playoffs, but managed to get back into the 2A PIAA bracket. … Serra Catholic is balanced with four players averaging in double figures, led by Brianna Battles and Cate Clarke. … Redbank Valley boasts the KSAC MVP in sophomore Mylee Harmon, who is averaging 21 points, 5.8 steals, and 4.4 assists per game. … Senior Alivia Huffman, a California University of Pa. recruit, made the KSAC first team by averaging 16 points, 8.5 rebounds, 3.8 steals, 3.8 assists, and 1.3 blocks per game. … Senior Caylen Rearick is also a dangerous outside shooter and a strong defender. She’s averaging 6.4 points, two steals, and 2.5 assists per game. She made the KSAC third team. … Redbank is the only one-loss team in the 2A bracket.

WHO: Lakeview (18-7) at Moniteau (19-7)
TIP-OFF: 7 p.m. Friday
THE SKINNY: Lakeview ran into a buzzsaw in the District 10 final, falling to Kennedy Catholic, 61-29. … Kelsey Seddon was a bright spot in that loss for the Sailors, scoring 11 points. … Lakeview is led by Emma Marsteller, who is the Sailors’ top scorer. … Moniteau is led by KSAC first-teamer Catherine Kelly, who averages 15.1 points per game. … Second-team KSAC selection Kendall Sankey is putting up 7.1 points and 9.6 rebounds per night. … KSAC third-teamer Davina Pry is averaging 7.4 points and 6.7 boards.


WHO: Shady Side Academy (23-3) at Karns City (15-9)
TIP-OFF: 7 p.m. Friday
THE SKINNY: Shady Side Academy coach Jonna Burke won her 500th game this season. She previously coached at Butler and Bethel Park. … Two years ago, the Bulldogs won two games. Last year, they were 9-12. … Freshman Maggie Spell scored 27 points for SSA in the third-place WPIAL consolation win over Neshannock. … Karns City sophomore Chloe Fritch was named to the KSAC first team. She averages 11.8 points per game. … Senior Emma Dailey and sophomore Brooklynn Taylor were named to the KSAC second team for the Gremlins.


WHO: Knoch (17-9) at Punxsutawney (22-1)
TIP-OFF: 3 p.m. Saturday
THE SKINNY: The Knights are led by senior point guard Nina Shaw, who averages 13.6 points per game. … Sharp-shooter Hattie McGraw, who goes by the nickname “Hattie Buckets” is averaging nearly 14 ppg. McGraw the nieve of the late Slippery Rock University women’s basketball coach Bobby McGraw. … The Chucks rallied for a 44-41 win over St. Marys in the D9 title game. It was the eighth title in the last nine years for Punxsutawney. … Chloe Presloid leads the Chucks in scoring at 15 points per game.

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