South Allegheny girls basketball inexperienced but athletic
TribLIVE Sports Videos
South Allegheny, despite an inexperienced team and a short bench, enters the girls basketball season believing it is making progress.
“We were competitive last year. We're getting there,” fourth-year South Allegheny coach said Ashleigh Hays.
It has been eight years since South Allegheny reached the WPIAL playoffs.
“We're inexperienced, but we'll see what we can do with the talent that we have,” said Hays, a Thomas Jefferson product who played college basketball at Point Park. “We'll try to use our quickness and athleticism to our advantage.”
Half of South Allegheny's eight victories last season were by nine points or less. There also were two similar losses.
The Gladiators settled for an 8-14 record in 2012-13, including a 3-9 mark in their first season in Section 3-AA. But Hays said the team benefitted from playing against strong WPIAL playoff qualifiers such as Greensburg Central Catholic and Jeannette.
“The girls are working hard,” Hays said. “You can't knock their effort at all.”
Five freshmen are on a roster of 11 players, but only three starters return. Among them, 5-foot-11 junior forward Abby Dranko averaged 10.2 points and 7.5 rebounds per game as a sophomore.
“Abby is such a great leader. She plays year-round,” Hays said. “She's great at taking girls under her wings.
“We've had some soccer players come out for the team — we have great soccer programs — and they are learning the game of basketball. Some of them have said, ‘Why didn't we do this earlier?' We're going slow to put the fundamentals in place.”
Joining Dranko as returning starters are 5-8 senior forward Mikayla Stearns and 5-7 senior guard Carly Galley.
The most significant loss from last season was Jaylee Patterson, a career 1,000-point scorer who led South Allegheny at 15.0 points per game.
“That's tough to overcome, but we have a lot of young, athletic players coming in,” Hays said.
South Allegheny opens its schedule at the two-day Cornell Tournament against the host team Friday.
Dave Mackall is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- W.Pa. to observe International Overdose Awareness Day
- Animal welfare groups see opportunities in dialogue about Vick signing
- Pitt star running back Conner remains grounded despite success
- Brashear cornerback Coleman picks Pitt
- Rock DE Martin plans to bedevil quarterbacks
- What’s Holdren hiding?
- Heyl: Charlie’s recognizability a tragic flaw for Pittsburgh fishmonger
- Steelers notebook: Tomlin mum on Bryant suspension
- Rossi: Beleaguered Steelers need MVP from Big Ben
- NFL notebook: Redskins torn over QB Griffin’s fate
- Man critical after being shot in Pittsburgh’s Knoxville neighborhood