Vincentian boys win, sets up showdown with Lincoln Park
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Vincentian Academy didn't show any signs of fatigue Tuesday in its 94-66 win over Homer-Center in the second round of the PIAA Class A playoffs Tuesday at Hempfield.
Vincentian (24-3) will play WPIAL champion Lincoln Park on Friday at a time and location to be determined.
After losing 110-95 to Monessen in the WPIAL semifinals, Vincentian had nearly two weeks off before its first PIAA playoff game, a 95-85 win over Cochranton.
They made the most of the rest.
“We may have been getting a little tired,” Vincentian coach George Yokitis said. “We go about 10 deep, but to play the way we do, they're just children. Maybe I'm wrong to play this way, but they seem to like it.”
The rest was especially important for junior guard Ryan Wolf, who scored a game-high 30 points for Vincentian.
He had missed time with a back injury toward the end of the season and was clearly hampered in the WPIAL playoffs.
“I've been going to physical therapy, and I feel a lot better now,” Wolf said. “I've been doing that for a couple weeks, and they take good care of me. It's just about keeping my abs strong.”
Jay Cortese added 25 points, Jim Kenna 14 and Kevin Fischer 12 to lead Vincentian to its first PIAA quarterfinal appearance since 2011. Vincentian was eliminated in the second round by Bishop Carroll last season and Visionquest in 2012.
Cortese has helped carry the scoring load in Wolf's absence.
“Coach told me that everyone has a job within the team, and he told me my specific job,” Cortese said. “I kept working on it and working on it.
“Doing your specific job is what makes you successful.”
Vincentian was on pace to score 100 points for its sixth time this season and looked to be running away with the game, leading 54-40 at halftime.
But Homer-Center (23-4) — the third seed from District 6 — wouldn't go away and went on a 10-0 run in the third quarter to pull within 61-56.
After a timeout, Vincentian's press defense forced a spree of turnovers, and the Royals countered with a 13-0 run to close the quarter and all but seal the game.
“We said, ‘Calm down and stick to what we do. We're a better team than this,' ” Yokitis said. “We started to attack their zone better.
“We got on a little run there with a bunch of steals. That's what we live for, little spurts.”
Lincoln Park and Vincentian were the top two seeds entering the WPIAL playoffs.
Having to take on the top-ranked team in the state doesn't intimidate the Royals.
“We're just going to come back to the gym tomorrow and get focused,” Cortese said. “We know they're tall. We know they're pretty good athletes, but we can take them.”
Joe Capitosti led Homer-Center with 18 points.
Gary Horvath 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.
- Montgomery’s 3s help team to Cager Classic win
- Teams set mark for 3-pointers as East boys nip West, 110-109, in Cager Classic
- Kittanning senior Kunst shoots lights out at Cager Classic skills event
- Bordonaro boosts East girls to 79-72 victory in Cager Classic
- Gorman: A rivalry like none other
- Seton-La Salle girls basketball team peaks with 8-game playoff run