New Castle News

Sports

March 6, 2013

Players of the Week: The WPIAL champion New Castle basketball team

NEW CASTLE — Days after its second consecutive WPIAL championship, it is business as usual for the New Castle High boys basketball team.

“A couple of days after, it still feels good,” senior guard Brandon Domenick said. “It’s going to feel good for awhile, but we know we have to put it aside because we know we have four or five more games to play, and we have to get ready for state.”

A fitting mindset for this Red Hurricane team — one that came into the season with high hopes and high pressure to succeed for the second year in a row and did exactly that.

“I’d have to say the attention has been the biggest mountain for us to overcome. We didn’t really look at it, because coach (Ralph) Blundo and the coaching staff did a good job of keeping our minds out of the newspapers and what people were telling us,” senior forward Shawn Anderson said. “It’s definitely hard to not think highly of yourself when everyone is telling you every five minutes how great you are and how great you could be. That’s definitely something we’ve had to overcome and I think we’ve done a good job of keeping our mindset pretty levelheaded.”

The ’Canes again have reached the mountaintop, at least as far as the WPIAL is concerned. This season they did it in style, accumulating a 26-0 record, culminating in a 68-53 championship game victory over Hampton at the A.J. Palumbo Center on Saturday. By winning the crown this year in Class AAAA, New Castle made history. It became the first school to win back-to-back WPIAL championships in different classifications, having taken home gold in AAA last season. The ’Canes year-long efforts have earned them Lawrence County Athlete of the Week honors, an award sponsored by Washington Centre Physical Therapy and selected by the New Castle News sports staff.  

“It feels good with people telling you congratulations. It feels good winning back-to-back WPIAL championships, this time in Quad-A,” junior guard and sixth man Drew Allen said. “People doubted us, and we did it.”

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