High School Basketball: Girls' Brackets Breakdown
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The seeds: Mt. Lebanon first, North Allegheny second, Bethel Park third and Hempfield fourth.
Leading scorers: Monica Burns, Hempfield, 18.3; Erin Mathias, Fox Chapel, 17.4; Krista Pietropola, Plum, 17.0; Gloria Schifino, Penn Hills, 16.4; Megan Marecic, Bethel Park, 15.5.
The winner will be: Bethel Park. It's hard to go against Mt. Lebanon, winners of three of the past four titles. But this could be the year Bethel Park wins its first championship. Marecic, a junior, is one of the WPIAL's best guards and the Black Hawks proved they can beat Mt. Lebanon, beating the Blue Devils, 60-54, in early January. But Mt. Lebanon won the rematch, 49-35.
Sleeper: Fox Chapel. Any team with a 6-foot-3 player who is a Duke recruit must be taken seriously. Mathias, only a junior, committed to Duke as a freshman. The Foxes tied Gateway for the Section 2 title.
The scoop: Mt. Lebanon is playing better than anyone heading into the playoffs. The Blue Devils have won 13 in a row. They don't have a big scorer, but are balanced offensively -- and play excellent defense. ... Mt. Lebanon, Bethel Park and Chartiers Valley are from Section 4. Defense is big with these three teams, as all three allow fewer than 40 points a game. ... Chartiers Valley helped its seeding by beating North Allegheny Monday. ... Hempfield is a team to watch, but the Spartans come from Section 1, which hasn't fared well in the playoffs recently. The past two years, Section 1 teams were 2-6 in first-round or preliminary-round games.
The seeds: Blackhawk first, Hopewell second, South Park third and Central Valley fourth.
Leading scorers: Shatori Walker-Kimbrough, Hopewell, 27.5; Chassidy Omogrosso, Blackhawk, 22.0; Jessica Slagus, Belle Vernon, 19.8; Sierra Perlik, Quaker Valley, 19.3; Madi Rowan, Central Valley, 18.3; Shelby Lindsay, South Park, 17.8; Seairra Barrett, Central Valley, 17.3; Jayne Oberdorf, Greensburg Salem, 17.2; Sara Pilarski, Hampton, 17.0; Audrey Stapleton, Indiana, 16.9; Katie Fischer, Ambridge, 16.7; Claire Oberdorf, Greensburg Salem, 16.4; Halie Torris, South Park, 15.6; Maryssa Agurs, Keystone Oaks, 15.1
The winner will be: Blackhawk. The Cougars (22-0) are the only undefeated girls team in the WPIAL tournament. Omogrosso is one of the WPIAL's best point guards. Even though she is only a sophomore, Omogrosso already has made a verbal commitment to Pitt and has 1,000 career points. The Cougars also have a number of other experienced, talented players.
Sleeper: South Park. The Eagles are 19-2, with the only WPIAL loss to Hopewell (49-34). Three South Park players average at least 14 points -- Lindsay, Torris and freshman Allison McGrath.
The scoop: The field has the WPIAL's top player in Walker-Kimbrough, a University of Maryland recruit. She carried the Vikings to the title a year ago. Even though Hopewell has lost twice to Blackhawk, Hopewell is still a threat to win it all -- just because of Walker-Kimbrough. ... Blackhawk, Central Valley and Hopewell are from Section 2. Central Valley has one of the most potent one-two punches in the WPIAL in Rowan and Barrett.
The seeds: Seton-LaSalle first, Bishop Canevin second, Burrell third and Deer Lakes fourth.
Leading scorers: Ciara Gregory, Jeannette, 30.3; Sammie Weiss, McGuffey, 27.5; Jill Glover, West Shamokin, 18.3; Becca Babincak, Deer Lakes, 18.0; Alex Deep, Riverside, 17.9; Ayana Vaughn, Beaver Falls, 17.6; Shelby Brown, Mohawk, 16.6; Lexi Posset, Beaver, 16.6; Madison McHale, Neshannock, 16.3; CeCe Dixon, Steel Valley, 15.9; Erin Waskowiak, Bishop Canevin, 15.0
The winner will be: Seton-LaSalle. The Rebels are a prohibitive favorite. They haven't lost to a WPIAL team since the 2010-11 season. This year's team outscores opponents, 71-36, on average and features two Duquesne recruits -- senior guard Angela Heintz and sophomore point guard Cassidy Walsh. Forward Naje Gibson is one of the WPIAL's top juniors.
Sleeper: Jeannette. There is one main reason this is a team to watch -- Gregory. A senior guard, Gregory won the WPIAL scoring title for the second year in a row, averaging 30 points this season.
The scoop: Bishop Canevin has trouble beating Seton-LaSalle, but is a strong favorite to at least make the title game opposite the favorites. Bishop Canevin lost to Seton-LaSalle a year ago in the championship. ... The field features the top two scorers in the WPIAL. Besides Jeannette's Gregory, McGuffey's Weiss finished second in scoring at 27.5. ... You also could call Burrell and Deer Lakes sleepers. They come from the same section and Burrell has a 20-2 record. Deer Lakes is 19-3.
The seeds: Vincentian first, Serra second, North Catholic third and Quigley fourth.
Leading scorers: Lauren Wolosik, North Catholic, 27.1; Brenna Wise, Vincentian, 23.2; Courtnee McMasters, California, 22.2; Mallory Heinle, St. Joseph, 19.6; Madison Raber, West Greene, 18.7; Mariah Ward, Monessen, 18.6; Morgan Berardi, Carmichaels, 17.6; Mason DePetro, Cornell, 16.1; Aila Bradford, Eden Christian, 15.9; Olivia English, Avella, 15.6
The winner will be: Vincentian. The Royals were undefeated until losing Monday to Gateway in a non-section game. Wise is a force in the middle for the Royals, the defending WPIAL champions.
Sleeper: Carmichaels. Greene County teams usually don't fare well in the postseason, but the Mikes could pull a surprise or two. They are 19-3.
The scoop: Saying North Catholic will make the title game isn't exactly going out on a limb. Since moving down from Class AAA, North Catholic has made the Class A title game five of six seasons. Wolosik, a senior guard, is averaging more than 30 points a game the past few weeks. ... Serra is a team to watch. Although the Eagles' competition in Section 4 was suspect, they lost to Vincentian by only eight points.
First Published February 13, 2013 12:00 am