What to watch in WPIAL sports on February 2, 2023: Women’s basketball teams look to break section lockouts


Thursday, February 2, 2023 | 00:05

Whether or not the groundhog sees its shadow on Thursday, an early spring or longer winter won’t affect the five-team chase in the crowded 2-5A section apex of WPIAL women’s basketball.

The top five teams are only separated by two games with two or three section games remaining.

On Thursday, Hampton (13-5) visits Armstrong (16-3).

The Talbots are tied for first with Mars (13-4), both with section records of 7-2. They are half a game ahead of the River Hawks, who are 7-3.

The other two teams in the crowded field are Fox Chapel (6-4, 12-7) and Shaler (5-4, 14-5).

On Friday, the Fightin’ Planets take on the host Titans.

Hampton is trying to even the score after losing 52-32 to Armstrong on Jan. 9.

Junior Kyla Fitzgerald had 18 points to lead the River Hawks while junior Meghan Murray had a season-high 19 points for the Talbots.

Class 3A fights for the first

There are two district women’s basketball sections in Class 3A that are crowded at the top with three-team pursuits for first place.

Avonworth (6-1, 12-5) has a one-game lead over Keystone Oaks (5-2, 13-6) and Our Lady of the Sacred Heart (5-2, 12-6).

Thursday, the Antelopes host the Golden Eagles.

Avonworth’s only section loss this season came on Jan. 9 at Keystone Oaks, 55-48.

Senior Eriona Neal led the knockout with 19 points while second Greta O’Brien had a season-high 20 points for the ‘Lopes.

Also on Thursday, OLSH travels to East Allegheny (0-7, 3-12).

In Division 4-3A, Waynesburg (6-1, 16-2) has a one-game advantage over Young (5-2, 10-8) and South Park (5-2, 9-10).

The Raiders can take a big step toward a sectional crown when they host the Cougars on Thursday. Yough handed Waynesburg its only division loss Jan. 9 against Cougar Mountain, 44-38.

Seniors Mikalah Chewning and Laney Gerdich each had 14 points for the Cougars while junior Josie Horne had 12 to beat the Raiders.

Thursday, South Park goes to Charleroi (3-4, 8-8). The Cougars have a one-game lead over McGuffey for fourth in the division.

Class A blocking

After Thursday’s action, there is only one week left in WPIAL’s regular season.

Thus, the winner of the Section 2-A showdown in the Mon Valley will take a big step towards a Section Championship.

West Greene (10-7) visits Monessen (12-4) with both teams tied for first place with 6-1 section records.

The Greyhounds’ only loss in the section was against the Pioneers in December 45-42.

It was also the last time Monessen lost. They currently have a 10-game winning streak.

West Greene’s only section loss was to Avella last week, 64-49. The Pioneers have lost two of their last three games overall.

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