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High School Sports

Mt. Lebanon girls basketball team advances to fourth straight final

| Wednesday, Feb. 29, 2012

Resilient No. 14 seed Upper St. Clair trailed by just two points entering the fourth quarter, but Section 4 rival and No. 2 seed Mt. Lebanon took over in the fourth to earn a 49-33 victory in the WPIAL Class AAAA semifinals at Chartiers Valley on Tuesday night.

Mt. Lebanon outscored the Panthers, 16-2, in the final period to advance to the championship game for the fourth straight season.

The three-time defending state champion Blue Devils (22-3), led by Christine Ehland's 12 points, will next try to win their first league title since 2010 and third in four years against top-seeded Oakland Catholic on Friday at the Palumbo Center. Upper St. Clair (13-12), which has qualified for the PIAA tournament, was paced by Jordan Serio's 13-point effort.

Oakland Catholic 58, Baldwin 41 — After a closely-contested first quarter, top-seeded Oakland Catholic opened a 21-12 halftime lead and held on for a semifinal-round victory at North Allegheny. Jess Madjenovich scored 22 points for the Eagles (24-1). Mandi Johnston scored 12 points for No. 5-seeded Baldwin (17-7), which has qualified for the PIAA tournament.

Class AA girls

Seton-La Salle 78, Keystone Oaks 38 — Four players scored in double figures, as top-seeded Seton-La Salle cruised to a semifinal victory at North Hills. Naje Gibson led the way for the Rebels (24-0), with 24 points. Natalie Piaggesi (15), Angela Heintz (12) and Cassidy Walsh (11) also paced Seton-La Salle, which will face No. 2 Bishop Canevin in the finals Friday at the Palumbo Center. Keystone Oaks (19-7) will still advance to the PIAA tournament.

Class AAA boys

New Castle 72, Beaver 31 — Shawn Anderson scored 20 points, all in the first half, to propel top-seeded New Castle to a semifinal-round victory at North Allegheny. Anderson hit 9 of 12 shots, including two 3-pointers, for the Red Hurricanes (25-0). Malik Hooker, who had 10 rebounds, and Antonio Rudolph added 10 points each. Beaver (18-7), which was held to single digits in each quarter, will continue its season in the PIAA tournament.

Class A boys

Cornell 57, North Catholic 49 — After trailing by 10 points at halftime, sixth-seeded Cornell rebounded with a dominating second-half to earn a semifinal-round victory at West Allegheny. Cornell (19-5) outscored No. 2-seeded North Catholic (18-6) by 18 points in the second half. The Raiders will play top-seeded Lincoln Park in the finals Friday at the Palumbo Center. Cornell lost to Lincoln Park twice this season, 92-81 and 76-52.

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