Seton-La Salle girls avenge playoff losses to rival Bishop Canevin, advance to WPIAL title game
TribLIVE Sports Videos
To prepare for Tuesday's WPIAL Class AA semifinal against Bishop Canevin, the Seton-La Salle girls basketball team watched a VHS tape that showed the Rebels' loss to the Crusaders in the 2012-13 PIAA Class AA semifinals, played in the same Chartiers Valley gymnasium.
Then, Seton-La Salle's first-year coach Spencer Stefko said, “Someone in the room may have smashed it with a sledgehammer, scattered it all over the room.”
Top-seeded Seton-La Salle took out even more aggression on No. 5 Bishop Canevin with a 62-40 win Tuesday, advancing to the WPIAL Class AA championship game for the sixth consecutive season.
“We remembered what they did to us last year,” Rebels senior Naje Gibson said. “It was a personal game.”
Gibson led Seton-La Salle (21-4) with 17 points and nine rebounds. Yacine Diop added 15 points and Shaunay Edmonds 15.
The Rebels will meet No. 2 seed Burrell in Friday's WPIAL championship game.
Becca Turney scored 14 points for Bishop Canevin (19-6), but the Rebels held Johnie Olkosky and Gina Vallecorsa to a total of eight points — or about 19 less than they usually score.
“We played good defense,” Edmonds said. “We got it done.”
This was the 13th meeting over the past four years between the two Class AA powers, with Seton-La Salle winning 11 times.
Chances are they'll meet again. And if they do, well, at least Stefko doesn't have to reference the tape he popped in for this one.
“That was the only copy we had,” Stefko joked. “Now there's no more copies. That game was just a rumor.”
Seton-La Salle jumped out to an 11-3 lead Tuesday after a layup from Nicolette Newman forced a Bishop Canevin timeout.
Gibson had seven of those points, and the Rebels led, 18-8, after one.
Getting consecutive baskets from Turney and a jumper in the lane for Vallecorsa, Bishop Canevin cut it to 24-21 late in the second quarter.
“We know there were stretches in the first half that showed significant weaknesses on our part,” Stefko said. “We know we have to shore those up.”
Seton-La Salle had a 28-22 lead at the break and increased it to 39-25 when Diop made a beautiful cut to the hoop and Gibson drained a 3-pointer from the right corner midway through the third.
Overall, Seton-La Salle outscored Bishop Canevin, 19-11, in the third quarter to pull away.
“We came out the start of the half and struggled on offense,” Bishop Canevin coach Tim Joyce said. “Then we stopped rebounding.
“They're really athletic. What can you say?”
They were also, evidently, plenty motivated.
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.
- Riverview girls aim to build on memorable season
- New scenery for 1st-year Riverview boys basketball coach Sapotichne
- Plum boys basketball seeks section 3-peat
- Mt. Pleasant to rely on experienced, balanced group
- South Allegheny boys seeking bounce-back season
- Coach focused on building South Allegheny girls program
- Plum girls basketball team looking to take next step
- Monessen girls basketball eyes playoff return
- Expanded roster helps boost Kiski Area girls
- Knoch basketball team gets reinforcements
- Leechburg boys set to go up-tempo