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St. Joe’s, PV girls move on; Bellefonte ousted from playoffs

by on February 20, 2020 1:31 PM

SPRING MILLS — A trio of Centre County girls’ high school basketball teams opened District 6 tournament play last week, including Penns Valley, which received a career-high 31 points from Hannah Montminy in a 67-25 victory over visiting Mount Union in a Class 3A quarterfinal-round game on Feb. 17.

St. Joseph’s also kept its hopes of a PIAA tournament berth alive by defeating visiting Saltsburg, 42-39, on Feb. 18 in Class 1A quarterfinal action. Bellefonte, meanwhile, dropped a heartbreaker in the Class 5A quarterfinals, falling 46-43 at Du-Bois on Feb. 17.

Leah Beban added 11 points as the Lady Rams earned a shot at top-seeded Tyrone in the 3A bracket. Penns Valley is the eighth seed. Mount Union was seeded ninth.

The top four teams advance to states in the classification, so, if Penns Valley can pull the upset of the Lady Eagles, it will return to states. The Lady Rams were district runners-up last year.

Penns Valley only outscored the visiting Lady Trojans by more than 10 points in one quarter — the Lady Rams carried the fourth stanza 21-4 — but it didn’t give up more than eight points in any quarter in running its record to 11-12. Kennedy Welshans and Kailen Winkelblech each chipped in with seven points for the victors, while Camille Posey’s 11 points led Mount Union, the No. 9 seed.

Montminy scored eight points in each of the first two quarters and nine in the third.

Fourth-seeded St. Joseph’s got 16 points from Kathleen Simander to prevail in its opening-round game. The Wolfpack improved to 13-9 and earned a semifinal matchup at Blacklick Valley, the top seed, on Saturday.

Regardless of the outcome of that, St. Joseph’s has two more games, as the top three finishers qualify for states. The Wolfpack just needs to win one of those to reach interdistricts.

Bridgid Scanlon scored six for St. Joseph’s, which came back after scoring just four first-quarter points and trailing by five heading to the second quarter.

Abbie Dickie scored 12 and Mariah Simpson 10 to front Saltsburg.

Bellefonte came up just short of avenging a regular-season-ending home defeat to DuBois, leading 31-25 through three quarters. However, Saige Weible scored nine of her game-high 21 points in the final frame to send the Lady Beavers into the semifinals.

The Lady Raiders finished Marcus Toomer’s first season as coach with a 10-13 record.

“It is a tough way to end the season,” Toomer said. “The team played valiantly throughout the entirety of the game. They put their heart into this game, and it is shame that we could not get the victory. DuBois is a tough team, especially on their home floor.

“The team is disappointed, but they are still hungry to improve and learn from this experience. I couldn’t be more proud.”

Maddie Tice paced the Lady Raiders with 15 points, while Mia Johnson finished with 10 and Sara DeHaas eight. Bellefonte jumped out to a 12-6 lead but was unable to distance itself from the hosts.

State College also qualified for the postseason, but the Lady Little Lions weren’t scheduled to be in action until Friday, Feb. 21. They’ll take on archrival Altoona at Mount Aloysius College at 6 p.m. for the District 6 Class 6A championship.

If State College wins that, it automatically advances to the PIAA playoffs. If State loses that game, it still has a chance to qualify for states playing through a consolation bracket that also includes teams from District 10 and District 8.

The Lady Little Lions are the No. 1 seeds.

REGULAR SEASON CONCLUDES

Mallorie Smith scored 21 points and Bellefonte turned in another strong performance on the defensive side of the court as the Lady Raiders posted a 54-38 Mountain League victory at Clearfield in the last game of the regular season involving county squads on Wednesday, Feb.

12.

The team did a great job bouncing back from the tough loss the night before,” Toomer said. “After a slow start, our defense really picked up, and we were able to score the basketball on a consistent basis.

“We were shorthanded as we only played six girls, but they did a great job pushing through on the road.”

Maddie Tice added 19 points for the Lady Raiders, who had a three-point lead after a quarter but expanded the margin to 10 by halftime.

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