News and notes from the WPIAL and City League ...
How would the top team in WPIAL Class A boys basketball fare against a top team from Class AAAA? The Pittsburgh Basketball Club Classic will give the answer.
The Basketball Club Classic is a six-game event Sunday at La Roche College, and one of the best matchups is Lincoln Park vs. Seneca Valley at 12:30 p.m.
Lincoln Park is the Post-Gazette's No. 1-ranked Class A team while Seneca Valley is No. 3 in Class AAAA. Both teams have talented players and size. It will be interesting to see how Lincoln Park's 6-foot-8 Elijah Minnie performs in this contest. Since being ruled eligible by the PIAA a few weeks ago, Minnie has been a handful for Lincoln Park opponents, averaging double figures in points and rebounds.
But Seneca Valley has some size also with 6-7 center Alex Snyder, 6-5 guard Easton Bazzoli and 6-3 forward R.J. McCauley.
The other five games in the event are Aliquippa vs. West Allegheny (11 a.m.), Seton-LaSalle vs. Ambridge (2 p.m.), Sto-Rox vs. Chartiers Valley (3:30 p.m.); Upper St. Clair vs. Gateway (5 p.m.) and Montour vs. Shaler 6:30). The Upper St. Clair-Gateway game is another excellent matchup between two of the top five teams in Class AAAA.
Upper St. Clair might be playing as well as anyone in Class AAAA, with the exception of New Castle. The Panthers have won nine games in a row.
The Montour-Shaler game in the Basketball Club Classic features a matchup of two of the top guards in the WPIAL -- Shaler's Geno Thorpe against Montour's Devin Wilson. Thorpe already has signed with Penn State while Wilson has some scholarship offers from Division I colleges.
Here is one coach's views on Lincoln Park's team, now that Minnie is eligible: "He puts them on a different level. I don't know if they would've won Class A without him. But with him, I don't know if anyone could beat them because he gives them something they didn't have. A 6-8 guy on the Class A level is big. But wouldn't it be great if we could all have a 6-8 kid become eligible in the middle of the season?"
In his first season as Sto-Rox's football coach, Dan Bradley guided the Vikings to the WPIAL Class A championship game. Now his basketball team also is having a successful season.
Bradley is in his fourth season as Avonworth's boys basketball coach and the Antelopes are in second place in WPIAL Class AA Section 6 with a 6-2 record and a 10-6 mark overall. Bradley is the only person in the WPIAL who is a head coach in both football and basketball.
Too big for Vincentian
North Catholic and Vincentian both have top boys and girls teams in Class A, and the two schools have a pretty good rivalry going in basketball. Vincentian has decided the games are too big to be played at the Royals' tiny gymnasium.
The Vincentian-North Catholic boys game Jan. 29 and the girls game Feb. 7 have both been moved to Marshall Middle School, which is part of the North Allegheny School District.
Check this out
One of the best backcourts in the WPIAL has to be Beaver Falls' Drew Cook and Elijah Cottrill. Cook, a senior, surpassed 1,000 career points Tuesday. Cottrill is a junior who has attracted interest from some Division I colleges. ... Scoring has been a problem all season for the Albert Gallatin boys (1-15), who average only 36 points a game. But the Colonials reached a new low Tuesday when they lost to Hempfield, 62-10. Albert Gallatin had only five points entering the fourth quarter. ... Three of the four leading scorers in WPIAL boys basketball are on teams with records below .500. They are John Arcuri of St. Joseph, Geno Thorpe of Shaler and Nick Miller of Western Beaver.
Mike White: email@example.com