The Meadville girls basketball team has a pretty big chip on its shoulder.
“People always underestimate us,” said Bulldogs senior Cadi McCoy. “But we’re better than our record is showing.”
Central Tech happened to be the team that knocked that chip off.
The Lady Bulldogs beat the Region 7-leading Falcons 46-44 Saturday afternoon at the House of Thrills.
“The most exciting game that I’ve coached, I think,” said Meadville head coach Casey O’Shea.
This was the second meeting between the two teams. In the season-opener on Dec. 6, Central Tech beat Meadville handily, 48-31.
“It was a totally different outcome,” said O’Shea. “It wasn’t even close, the first game. So, this game, I’m thrilled with them. I think they played great. They played as a team. They played loose and comfortably and just played.”
Meadville had led by as much as 13 points in the first half, but Central was able to take over the lead before halftime, and held onto in for most of the second half.
“We gave up that big lead,” said O’Shea. “I think that we haven’t really been in situations like that. So we’re not really sure yet about situational basketball, where we work for a good shot and work the clock. That kind of stuff, I think, will come.”
The Bulldogs were still trailing by five points halfway through the fourth quarter. Kiashiah Newsome cut that to two with a trey. It was her second 3-pointer of the period and fifth for the game. She would end the night with 20 points, scoring half of them in the decisive fourth. Simply put, she was hot when it mattered most.
Central Tech’s Noelle Vallimont, however, quickly followed up Newsome’s trey with a layup, quelling the momentum shift, and making it a 44-40 game with a minute and a half to play.
“When we were down by four I thought, ‘Oh boy’,” O’Shea said.
Making matters even more tense was the fact that many of the Bulldogs’ leaders were just a whistle away from leaving the game.
“I was a little uneasy about that,” O’Shea said. “Cadi had three fouls. Kiashiah had four fouls. Tomera (Schweter) had four fouls. Pretty much all of our starters were in foul trouble.”
However, the Bulldogs played the final minute and a half like a team that was fed up with watching games slip away.
Central Tech would not get in the hoop the rest of the afternoon as the frantic Bulldogs’ defense forced the Falcons into a handful of turnovers during their final possessions.
Now the ’Dogs needed to score some points.
Schweter got things going with an offensive rebound and a putback with a minute left to make it 44-42.
Then with 30 ticks remaining, Newsome picked off an inbounds pass and took it wire-to-wire for a layup to tie the game at 44-44.
Back down the court, Central Tech gave the ball to their leading scorer, Abby Klemm, who had 18 points in the books already.
Klemm drove the lane and went up to shoot. Instead she met with a wall of upraised arms that were attached to McCoy. Both Klemm and the ball landed out of bounds. MASH ball.
The Bulldogs hustled down the court as the final seconds drained off the clock. The clutch kid, Newsome, fired up a mid-range jumper. It bounced off the backboard and missed the hoop ...
... and fell into the hand of McCoy. She was up and in with the putback. The buzzer sounded. Bulldogs win.
“Any time Kiashiah or anybody shoots, I’m the rebounder,” said McCoy, who finished with a dozen points. “I like to go in and rebound. So when she’s driving in I’m not going to let her go in there by herself.
“I’ve got backup,” said Newsome.
“Yeah, I’m the backup,” McCoy said.
“That was a big rebound and a big putback,” said O’Shea.” Sometimes our little putbacks don’t bounce our way. But today they did.”
The loss drops Central’s record to 7-8 on the season.
Meadville improves to 3-10. Yet, as the Lady ’Dogs proved yesterday, that record doesn’t mean teams should expect an easy win.
They should, according to Newsome, “Expect the unexpected. That’s a quote from Kiashiah Newsome.”
“Kiashiah, I don’t think you actually made that up,” said McCoy.
“Well,” Newsome replied, “I did today.”
The Meadville girls basketball team has a pretty big chip on its shoulder.
Scots top Knights for PSAC crown
Home sweet home.
Edinboro University’s Valerie Majewski, the former General McLane standout who returned to the ’Boro this season after two years at the University of Buffalo, was in her old comfort zone Sunday afternoon.
NCAA MEN'S BASKETBALL: Hollins helps Minnesota beat Penn State
The pressure on Minnesota will ratchet up in a few days. This afternoon was for reflection -- and some fun.
Austin Hollins had 14 points and three steals in his last scheduled home game, a fitting senior spark for the Golden Gophers in an 81-63 victory over Penn State on Sunday to set up a rematch between these teams in the first round of the Big Ten tournament.
Reed on a roll, wins a World Golf Championship
He wore black pants and a red shirt, his Sunday colors. He took a lead into the final round, quickly expanded it with a pair of birdies and then relied on his short game to keep everyone chasing him. He even played it safe off the 18th tee, caring more about the trophy than the final score.
Breese closes career with second straight title
Sam Breese now knows how it feels to be perfect.
Breese finished with an undefeated season record of 35-0, with win No. 35 being the sweetest one of all.
The Lakeview senior stared into the face of the pressure that comes with defending a title, and made the Giant Center in Hershey feel like home. Undeniable talent and an incredible determination are the hallmarks of Breese’s approach to wrestling, and for the second straight year, he can call himself a champion.
McLane’s Wheeling comes up short in final
On a night when six wrestlers repeated as PIAA Class AAA champions, Chance Marsteller and Thomas Haines stole the show.
Marsteller, of Kennard-Dale, and Haines, of Solanco, became the 11th and 12th four-time gold-medal winners in Pennsylvania history. Marsteller (166-0) also is the first four-time champion to complete his career without a loss since Cary Kolat (1989-92) and the fourth overall.
Serra outlasts Cardinals
For the second time in as many days a basketball team from Cochranton High School played a private school from the WPIAL, put forth a valiant fight, but ultimately had its heart broken.
On Friday, it was the Cochranton boys team, which fell to Vincentian Academy 95-85.
Breese lone local to reach Class AA finals
A busy and entertaining Day 2 of wrestling at the PIAA Individual Wrestling Championships in Hershey came and went, as did the dreams of a gold medal for a handful of local wrestlers.
The one local wrestler that doesn’t apply to is Lakeview’s Sam Breese, who had the Giant Center crowd in aw during his two matches Friday. The two bouts equated to two wins, which means a shot a defending his championship.
Lee, Wheeling survive Day 2 in Hershey
Ehrin Lee’s smile following his quarterfinal win Friday at the PIAA Individual Wrestling Championships told the whole story.
Lee has had his eyes on the state championships all season long, and just getting there wasn’t enough. The Titusville 160-pounder has wrestled like one of the best grapplers in the state during the tournament thus far, and his 3-2 overtime win over Northampton’s Bobby Fehr proved that if nothing else, he’s one of the four best wrestlers in his weight class.
Cards can’t slow Vincentian
The starters on the Cochranton boys basketball team probably slept like logs on Friday night.
They left every ounce on the hardwood of Meadville High School’s House of Thrills, going up against the high-intensity attack of Vincentian Academy in the opening round of the PIAA Class A playoffs.
McLane rolls past Neshannock
Sarah Jay has made a habit of presenting her players with in depth scouting reports prior to each and every game.
But the report she handed them on Neshannock, the Lady Lancers’ first round opponent in the PIAA Class AA playoffs, was nothing like they had seen before.
- More Sports Headlines
- Scots top Knights for PSAC crown