ShareThis Page
5 players to watch in the opening round of the WPIAL boys basketball playoffs |
High School Basketball

5 players to watch in the opening round of the WPIAL boys basketball playoffs

Chris Harlan
Woodland Hills’ Keandre Bowles dunks over Gateway’s William Kromka (23) and R.J. Stevenson during their game Friday, Dec. 14, 2018, at Woodland Hills.
Highlands’ Johnny Crise dunks against Freeport on a put back Friday, Jan. 25, 2019 at Freeport Middle School.
Butler’s Ethan Morton drives to the basket to score between Pine-Richland defenders during their game Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019, at Butler Area High School.
Lincoln Park’s Keeno Holmes celebrates his three-pointer during overtime against Aliquippa Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, at Aliquippa High School.

The five-day forecast calls for cold weather across Western Pennsylvania, but here are five WPIAL boys basketball players worth braving the wind chill to watch.

All five are in action during the first round of the WPIAL playoffs.

Keandre Bowles, Woodland Hills, senior

Bowles was the WPIAL’s leading scorer in the regular season at 29.3 points per game. The 6-foot-3 guard helped Woodland Hills reach the WPIAL Class 6A semifinals last season. This year, now in Class 5A, the Wolverines earned the No. 4 seed.

Woodland Hills (17-5) faces No. 13 West Allegheny (9-13) at 8 p.m. Monday at Mt. Lebanon.

Johnny Crise, Highlands, junior

The 6-foot-7 forward averages 16.2 points but also is a double-digit rebounder many games for Highlands, which drew the No. 5 seed in Class 4A. Robert Morris was the first school to offer Crise a Division I scholarship last year.

Highlands (15-7) plays No. 12 Belle Vernon (8-14) at 8 p.m. Wednesday at North Hills.

Deamontae Diggs, McKeesport, junior

The 6-5 forward averages a double-double for McKeesport with 20 points and 12 rebounds. Diggs set a school single-game scoring record Jan. 8 when he had 42 points and 20 rebounds against Woodland Hills (Bowles scored 43 that night).

No. 9 McKeesport (11-9) plays No. 8 Shaler (15-7) at 8 p.m. Monday at Fox Chapel.

Keeno Holmes, Lincoln Park, senior

The 6-2 guard is trying to lead Lincoln Park to consecutive WPIAL Class 3A titles. He’s averaging a team-best 17.5 points as one of three double-digit scorers for the top-seeded Leopards. He recently announced a college offer from Clarion.

Lincoln Park (18-4) faces No. 16 Shady Side Academy (9-11) at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Fox Chapel.

Ethan Morton, Butler, junior

Morton is the biggest college recruit in the WPIAL today. The 6-6 guard has scholarship offers from Pitt, Penn State, West Virginia, Michigan, Virginia, Wisconsin and many others. Morton is averaging 27 points for Butler, which earned a No. 5 seed in Class 6A.

Butler (17-4) plays No. 12 Connellsville (8-14) at 8 p.m. Tuesday at Canon-McMillan.

Chris Harlan is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Chris via Twitter .

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using 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.