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Chartiers Valley and four other WPIAL teams win in AAA

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The WPIAL proved to be a tough out in the first round of the PIAA Class AAA boys basketball tournament. Five of the six WPIAL qualifiers won, including another big victory for Chartiers Valley, 96-66, against Central Tech.
The tournament is only in the second round, but six of those eight games Tuesday will feature either WPIAL or District 12 teams.
Archbishop Carroll (23-4), the District 12 third seed and defending champion, beat District 1 winner Holy Ghost Prep, 37-30, while District 12 champion Neumann-Goretti pounded Susquehanna Township, 64-44, and runnerup Dobbins (17-8) defeated Springfield Delco, 57-52.
With Oliver, Greater Johnstown and East losing, Chartiers Valley and surprising Bradford (22-2) of District 9 are the only No. 1 seeds at the bottom half of the bracket.
You know what that means? See you in State College, T.J.
After Chartiers Valley (26-1) plays West Allegheny for the fourth time Tuesday, the Colts will be tested by the Lancaster Catholic/York Suburban winner. Both are 23-5.
Prediction: CV routs West Allegheny again and, eventually, finds itself in the Western Final, giving WPIAL runnerup Hampton another chance. CV is 3-0 against West Allegheny and 2-0 against Hampton.
One more thought: One of those District 12 teams will reach the Bryce Jordan Center, opposite Chartiers Valley, in the final March 26.
Worth noting
T.J. McConnell’s 3 3s Friday gave him a WPIAL record 327 for his Chartiers Valley career. … Lincoln Park’s Chaquille Pratt scored 46 points in an 89-53 Class A victory against Penns Manor of District 6. … Serra Catholic, the fourth Class A seed from the WPIAL, lost to District 5 champion Southern Fulton, 48-43, after Serra’s Rob Heatherington turned an ankle in the second quarter and played the second half at half-speed. Heatherington still scored seven of his team-high 16 points on that bad wheel. … Mt. Lebanon and Baldwin are the only local teams left in the Class AAAA girls tournament, and they could stage a WPIAL title-game rematch in the quarterfinals next Friday. … If I didn’t have to work Tuesday, I’d buy a ticket to see the Jeannette/Avonworth girls in the Class AA second round. Lots of desire, lots of talent, lots of coaching savvy on both benches. … It’s hard to believe that Greensburg Central Catholic is the only one of seven WPIAL AA teams that lost in the first round. … Doesn’t matter, though: Villa Maria (24-2) and Notre Dame recruit Kayla McBride are coming out of the bottom half of the bracket where half of the eight remaining teams are from the WPIAL.
Final thought:
Has any noticed that Mt. Lebanon coach Dori Oldaker is chasing her fourth state title, including two at Blackhawk? That’s the only stat this season more impressive than McConnell’s 327 3-pointers.

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