New Castle News

Sports

March 8, 2013

'Canes look for magical season to continue in state tourney

NEW CASTLE — One postseason journey ended successfully for the New Castle High boys basketball team on Saturday.

A second — and even bigger one — is about to begin for the Red Hurricane.

At 3 p.m. tomorrow, New Castle will embark on a journey toward a PIAA Class AAAA championship against Gateway at North Allegheny High School. The ’Canes have never won a state championship in boys basketball.

Last week, New Castle won its second straight WPIAL championship, capturing gold in Class AAAA. Last year, the ’Canes won the Class AAA title. New Castle became the first WPIAL program to win consecutive basketball championships competing in different classifications as well as going undefeated en route to the crown two years in a row.

“I gave them two days off after the championship game,” ’Canes coach Ralph Blundo said. “We had a good practice on Tuesday and a solid scrimmage against West Middlesex on Wednesday.

“The guys know what’s at stake and how to address it. I don’t think I need to tell them what’s in front of us. Their work ethic has been great. The opportunity they have is once in a lifetime. We’ll be prepared. We’ll work hard and do the best we can.”

New Castle has strung together consecutive 26-0 campaigns which spanned the regular season through the WPIAL championship game each of the past two seasons. The ’Canes finished 27-1 last season.

“We haven’t spoke about the championship in three days. Everything we do is geared for preparing for Gateway at this point.”

New Castle knocked off the Gators (16-6), 87-55, on Feb. 23 at Ambridge in the WPIAL quarterfinals. The win ended Gateway’s two-year WPIAL reign as Class AAAA champions.

“They’re a great team,” said Gators coach Mitch Adams, who is in his eighth season at the helm. “Their record indicates it.

“It’s not very easy to win a title, let alone go undefeated. It’s a tribute to the program Ralph has built and to the kids. For us, it’s an opportunity to win a state playoff game.”

This is the Gators’ fourth straight trip to the state playoffs.

Adams feels the ’Canes enter the rematch with a decided advantage.

“They’re the WPIAL champions,” Adams said. “I knew the last two years, because we won the WPIAL title, that the team you beat in the quarterfinals, you’ll play them again in the state playoffs.

“There’s no question it’s a whole new season now. We have expectations here. I really think my guys are hungry after they beat us. There hasn’t been too many Quad-A teams in the state playoffs four years in a row.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • MANGINO.jpg Mangino finding new home at Iowa State

     The first time Iowa State defensive end Cory Morrissey saw Mark Mangino, the former Kansas coach and current ISU offensive coordinator stopped him in his tracks.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates.jpg Pirates jump on Haren early, top Dodgers 6-1

    Josh Harrison had two hits with two RBIs and the Pittsburgh Pirates jumped on Dan Haren early in a 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Aloi.jpg Aloi's PIAA eligibility hearing postponed

    The wait continues for Nick Aloi. Aloi, who transferred from Ellwood City Lincoln High to Lincoln Park Performing Arts Charter School on Jan. 21, still does not know if he will get to play a full season for the Leopards’ basketball team

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates.jpg Polanco, Walker lift Pirates over Dodgers 12-7

    Gregory Polanco broke out of a slump with a solo home run and a tiebreaking two-run single, lifting the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 12-7 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday night.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • ManzielJersey.jpg Manziel scores as NFL’s top-selling jersey

    Second on Cleveland’s depth chart, Johnny Manziel already tops one NFL list.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Huston.jpg Greg Huston: Pedro, Steelers' Training Camp and LeBron

    Pedro Alvarez’s throwing woes have not subsided after the All-Star break and he has become a defensive liability, especially late in games.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates.jpg Pirates beat Rockies 5-3 for 3-game sweep

    Taking the extra base was the key for the Pittsbur‘gh Pirates in completing a three-game sweep of the Colorado Rockies. Andrew McCutchen hit a tiebreaking single in the seventh inning, Neil Walker followed with a home run and the Pirates overcame a three-run deficit to beat the Rockies 5-3 Sunday.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • NC_Hoops.jpg Former Lady 'Canes stars reunite for tour of Europe

    Ryenn Micaletti and Abby Allen are headed to Europe. Micaletti and Allen — both members of the 2007 WPIAL Class AAAA girls basketball championship team — have joined forces with News Release Basketball to spend nearly three weeks in Germany and Belgium later this summer playing basketball and helping run clinics.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • pickle.tiff Pickleball players return

    Pickleball season is back, but some Neshannock Township residents said have no place to play.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • cutch.tiff Pirates Baseball: Resilient Bucs looking for post All-Star surge

    The Pittsburgh Pirates find themselves in an average, every day — if still heated — pennant race. A season after shedding the yoke of two decades of failure with a stirring run to a playoff berth, the Pirates are just another solid if not spectacular team trying to keep pace in the jam-packed NL Central.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

Shoot For 2
House Ads
Photo of the Day