For the first time in school history, the Mars boys basketball team will play in the WPIAL final four.
The No. 2 Planets (21-3) jumped out to a 9-0 lead and never led by fewer than six points the rest of the way in a 79-55 victory against No. 7 Uniontown (17-4) in a WPIAL Class AAA quarterfinal at Baldwin.
It was the second season in a row Mars made the WPIAL quarterfinals, but the Planets lost to eventual champion New Castle last year.
Josh Goetz and Mitch Buzard made sure the Planets did not have a repeat performance, as each scored 12 points in the first half to help Mars to a 42-25 lead at halftime.
Goetz finished with a game-high 22 points and added 10 rebounds, and Buzard ended with 18 points.
Owen Nearhoof (16 points) and Matt Getsy (11 points) also finished in double figures for the Planets, who will play No. 3 Montour Tuesday in the semifinals.
Jordan Pratt led Uniontown with 19 points and Xavier Ellis finished with 10.
The Raiders did not make a 3-pointer.
More Class AAA quarterfinals
• Chartiers Valley 67, South Fayette 62: Matty McConnell scored 19 points and made 8 of 8 free throws in the fourth quarter to help the No. 1 Colts (21-3) beat No. 9 South Fayette (14-10) at Canon-McMillan. Michael Boulos added 19 points for Chartiers Valley, including a 3-pointer as time expired in the third quarter to give the Colts a 47-46 lead. South Fayette, which lost all three meetings with Chartiers Valley this season, led by five at halftime but was outscored, 37-27, in the second half. The Lions got a game-high 21 points from Zach Challingsworth.
• Montour 59, Thomas Jefferson 40: Devin Wilson just missed a triple-double with 20 points, 10 rebounds and 9 assists to lead the No. 3 Spartans (20-4) to a victory against the Jaguars (17-7) at Bethel Park. Rob Julian added 18 points for Montour, including six of the Spartans' nine 3-pointers. The 59 points the Spartans scored were the most allowed by the Jaguars since Montour scored 69 in a 22-point win Jan. 23. Thomas Jefferson got 16 points from Zach Talley, but leading scorer Joe Carroll was held to six points, more than 10 below his average.
Class A quarterfinals
• Clairton 66, Union 55: Terrish Webb had 24 points and 10 rebounds to lead the No. 5 Bears (15-6) past the No. 4 Scotties (17-6) at North Hills. Tyler Boyd added 15 points for Clairton, which won despite getting outscored by 15 at the free-throw line. Ben Young scored 20 points to lead Union.
• North Catholic 53, Our Lady of the Sacred Heart 46: Pat Reilly hit two 3-pointers and scored all eight of his points in the fourth quarter to help the No. 3 Trojans (16-5) rally past the No. 6 Chargers (19-5) at North Hills. Danny Savulchak had 12 points to lead North Catholic, which trailed by four points entering the fourth quarter. Cameron Johnson had 18 points for OLSH.
• Lincoln Park 99, Wilkinsburg 58: Elijah Minnie recorded a triple-double -- 26 points, 13 blocks and 10 rebounds -- and Maverick Rowan scored a game-high 31 points in an easy win for the No. 1 Leopards (19-5) against the No. 9 Tigers (13-10) at West Allegheny. Rowan scored 21 of Lincoln Park's 61 second-half points. Isaiah Pete and Eric Dean each had 16 points for Wilkinsburg.
• Vincentian 81, Monessen 42: Ryan Wolf and Tony DiNardo combined for 44 points, 22 coming in the first quarter, to help the No. 2 Royals (23-1) beat the No. 7 Greyhounds (10-14) at Keystone Oaks. Vincentian, which has not scored fewer than 70 points in a game this season, had 77 through three quarters. The Royals also are undefeated against WPIAL teams this season. Monessen was led by Justice Rawlins' 10 points.
First Published February 23, 2013 5:00 AM