High school notebook: Seton-LaSalle girls basketball has a chance to be stronger
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The Seton-LaSalle girls basketball team has all but one player back from its undefeated team of last season, and the Rebels got stronger recently with the addition of a top player who transferred into the school.
Yacine Diop is a 5-foot-10 junior guard who transferred to Seton-LaSalle from Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va.
She originally is from Senegal and is a member of Senegal's 18-and-under national team.
Duquesne, as well as colleges in the Atlantic Coast Conference and Southeastern Conference, are showing interest in Diop, and she already has a scholarship offer from Dayton.
Diop still must be cleared by the WPIAL to play this season, and WPIAL executive director Tim O'Malley said the league's board of control will discuss her eligibility Monday.
The league could bring in Diop for a hearing to determine if she transferred to Seton-LaSalle for athletic reasons, which is against WPIAL and PIAA rules.
Diop played AAU basketball this summer for a Pittsburgh-area team (Western PA Bruins) that had a number of the top players in the WPIAL and was coached by Ron Mumbray, who was a Seton-LaSalle assistant coach for one season.
Mumbray also has become Diop's legal guardian, although he said she is living with another family.
Mumbray, who has resigned as a Seton-LaSalle assistant, said Diop left Oak Hill Academy because the girls basketball program folded after last season.
Mumbray also is the legal guardian for Seton-LaSalle standout Naje Gibson, a junior who already has a handful of Division I scholarship offers.
"I've known Yacine for a good, solid year," Mumbray said. "The kid was without a place to go. She has people in the Pittsburgh area from Senegal who she knows.
"We brought her up here this summer, and she played with us in July. She decided she wanted to go to school and stay here.
"Everything was done above board. There are only certain schools she can go to in this area because of the visa she has, and Seton-LaSalle is one of them. She knows the area and she has been to Pittsburgh several times. There are people from her country in this city. It just made sense."
Seton-LaSalle might have four future Division I college players in its lineup this season.
Besides Diop and Gibson, senior guard Angela Heintz and sophomore guard Cassidy Walsh have made verbal commitments to Duquesne.
Mumbray said Diop is extremely talented.
"She could be another Shatori Walker-Kimbrough," Mumbray said of the Hopewell senior and University of Maryland recruit.
"She is extremely quick. Some people say she might even end up rated higher than Shatori."
But Diop might not be the only highly touted player new to Seton-LaSalle's team. Morgan Henderson is a 6-2 sophomore who also transferred to Seton-LaSalle from The Woodlands High School in Texas. Henderson was considered one of the top sophomores in Texas before moving to the Pittsburgh area with her family.
Her eligibility also must be approved by the WPIAL.
Also at Seton-LaSalle, the school still hasn't named a girls basketball coach to replace Dennis Squeglia, who resigned last month for undisclosed reasons.
When Johnstown and Westmont Hilltop play a football game tonight, they will be wearing "throwback" jerseys ... from a movie?
"All the Right Moves" was an early 1980s football movie that starred Tom Cruise and Craig T. Nelson.
The movie was filmed in Johnstown, and the two fictitious rival schools in the movie were Ampipe and Walnut Heights.
Tonight, Johnstown will wear replica jerseys of Ampipe in the movie while Westmont Hilltop will wear replicas of Walnut Heights.
The movie also has a tie to the WPIAL.
Don Yannessa, who was Aliquippa's coach when the movie was filmed, had a few lines in the movie as the coach of Walnut Heights.
Cruise's character (Stefen Djordjevic) was the star player at Ampipe.
Shady Side Academy will officially dedicate the new Michael J. Farrell Stadium before the game tonight against Valley.
Farrell is a former Shady Side Academy trustee who gave a significant amount of money for the completion of the stadium.
Over the past few years, the stadium has added lights, artificial turf, new grandstands, concession stands and a three-level brick press box.
Farrell had three sons -- Mike, Chris and Jake -- play football at Shady Side Academy.
Mike is now an offensive lineman at Penn State.
Correction/Clarification: (Published September 26, 2012) Yacine Diop is a transfer student at Seton-LaSalle High School from Senegal. A story in Friday's editions incorrectly stated her native land. Also, former Seton-LaSalle assistant coach Ron Mumbray is not the legal guardian of another Seton-LaSalle player, and Mumbray was an assistant coach at Seton-LaSalle for only one season.
Correction/Clarification: (Published September 26, 2012) Josh Gibson III and Dawn Washington are the guardians of Seton-LaSalle High School girls basketball player Naje Gibson. A story in editions of Sept. 14 incorrectly stated former Seton-LaSalle assistant coach Ron Mumbray was her guardian.
First Published September 14, 2012 12:00 am