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Guido: State playoffs give teams Erie feeling

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By George Guido
Wednesday, March 5, 2014, 12:01 a.m.
 

Three local basketball teams will enter the PIAA Tournament this weekend, with two heading north to Erie County.

WPIAL runner-up Burrell (25-1) will play Clarion-Limestone (16-9) in a first-round Class AA girls game at North Hills.

The Bucs won two games in the state tournament last year, in their first PIAA appearance since 1994.

Clarion-Limestone lost the District 9 title game to Karns City, 47-22, on Saturday.

A rural school district, Clarion-Limestone is located between New Bethlehem and Clarion and serves Limestone and Clarion townships and other small towns such as Strattanville and Corsica.

Part of the school district flows into Jefferson County.

The Fox Chapel girls (19-5) will face District 10 champion Erie McDowell (15-7) at Mercyhurst at 6 p.m. Friday.

This is the Foxes' first appearance in the PIAA tournament since 2010 when Fox Chapel defeated Hollidaysburg in a play-in game before losing to Mt. Lebanon.

The last time the Foxes played McDowell, it was huge upset for Fox Chapel in the 1998 PIAA first round, 47-26, at Gannon University's Hammermill Arena.

Not only was Fox Chapel winning a surprise to many, but McDowell was never really in the game.

The Kiski Area boys (17-6) will take on McDowell (22-3) at 4 p.m. Saturday at General McLane in Edinboro.

It's the first PIAA appearance for the Cavaliers since 2004 when Kiski Area lost a first-round game to Chartiers Valley.

The last time Kiski Area played McDowell was March 15, 1986, in the state quarterfinals where the Cavaliers knocked off the Trojans, 63-50, en route to the PIAA title game.

McDowell High School serves Millcreek Township, located just outside Erie. Millcreek has a population of 53,515, making it the third-largest municipality in Western Pennsylvania, behind Pittsburgh and Erie.

It's the state's 14th-largest municipality.

General McLane

The site of Kiski Area's game, General McLane, serves the Edinboro area.

The school was built in 1959 and was named before William McLane actually became a general.

Col. William McLane led the 83rd regiment from Erie County into the Civil War, first at Fairfax, Va.

A further foray south into the Virginia Peninsula resulted in the 7-Day Battle at Gaines Mills, where McLane was mortally wounded June 27, 1862.

Nearly 100 years later, in 1961, the Pennsylvania General Assembly bumped McLane up to a brigadier general.

Kennedy Catholic out

Eisenhower lost the District 10 Class A boys consolation game to Kennedy Catholic on Saturday, 66-62, in double overtime.

But instead of putting its equipment in storage Monday, Eisenhower found out it will, indeed, be heading to the PIAA Tournament.

Kennedy Catholic discovered it had used an ineligible player during the game and forfeited the game.

The Warren County school will play Ridgway in the PIAA opener Friday at Clarion University.

Eisenhower opened in 1956, right in the middle of its namesake's eight years in the White House.

George Guido is a Valley News Dispatch scholastic sports correspondent. His column appears Wednesdays.

 

 
 


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