Westmoreland high school roundup: Ligonier Valley advances to Heritage Conference final
Ligonier Valley and Saltsburg will have another go-round on the basketball court.
The Heritage Conference rivals will play for the conference's boys basketball title Friday night after each won semifinal matchups Tuesday.
Collin Smith scored 21 points and Marrek Paola had 16 as Ligonier Valley defeated West Shamokin, 57-43. The Rams (17-5, 12-2) used a 27-2 run to take control. Saltsburg (21-1, 13-1) earned a 71-49 decision over Purchase Line.
The boys championship will follow the girls final between Homer-Center (20-2, 14-2) and West Shamokin (21-2, 14-1). Both games will be played at IUP's Kovalchick Center.
Hempfield 58, Penn-Trafford 39 — Braden Brose scored 11 points and Zak Mesich added 10 as Hempfield (8-13, 5-8) kept its playoff hopes alive with a Section 3-6A win over host Penn-Trafford (5-15, 1-12). Hempfield needs to beat Norwin Friday and have Woodland Hills lose to Penn-Trafford. Hempfield took a 36-20 lead into the half and held Penn-Trafford to four points in the third quarter.
Plum 60, Norwin 57 — Josh Ratesic had 17 points for Norwin (7-14, 2-11), but the Knights dropped a Section 3-6A game. Adam Mahr had 15 points and Lamar Whiting scored 14 for Plum (9-10, 4-9), which led 32-22 at halftime.
Franklin Regional 69, Greensburg Salem 54 — Hunter Stonecheck had 16 points and Nate Leopold had 15 as playoff-bound Franklin Regional (11-9, 6-4) wrapped up Section 3-5A play with a victory. Marvel McGowan had 32 points, as Greensburg Salem fell to 6-14 overall and 0-10 in section play.
Freeport 60, Derry 54 — Conner Watt had 17 points and Justin Huss had 14, but Derry (6-13, 3-8) lost in a Section 1-4A game.
Indiana 79, Mt. Pleasant 43 — John Benhart had 21 points and Carlos Carter added 19 as Indiana (14-7, 10-1) earned a win in Section 1-4A. Mt. Pleasant (4-17, 3-8) fell behind 28-13 in the first quarter, and Indiana used a 17-5 run in the third quarter to pull away. The Vikings were eliminated from playoff contention.
Jeannette 93, Riverview 56 — Mike Pompei had 30 points to pull within 62 to 1,000 for his career as Jeannette (11-9, 9-2) rolled to a Section 1-2A victory. Tre Cunningham and Rylan Bumoskey each scored 18 for the Jayhawks, who closed the game on a 31-9 run.
Southmoreland 69, Yough 35 — Southmoreland (17-4) opened a 23-6 lead en route to a nonsection win. Tommy Pisula, who needs one point for 1,000 in his career, scored 25 for the Scotties. John McClaren had 13 for Yough (1-21).
Latrobe 57, Fox Chapel 53 — Laura Graytok had 21 points and Shelby Wetzel scored 10 as Latrobe (8-13, 2-7) earned a Section 2-6A victory.
Hempfield 11, Fox Chapel 1 — Jared Gerger had four goals and two assists as Hempfield (8-8-1) won a Class AA game. Connor Lawrence had four assists and Nick Koziara had a goal and three assists.
Monday's late highlights
• Olivia Miller had 17 points, nine rebounds and five steals, and Lacie Flickinger scored five points with five assists and four steals as Ligonier Valley (8-14, 6-8) defeated Marion Center, 29-26, in a Heritage Conference girls basketball game.
• Blake Rossi had two goals and Paxton Knupp added a score, but Latrobe (8-8-1) lost 4-3 to Hampton in a PIHL Class AA game.