It was a close call for the Shenango High girls basketball team Wednesday night.
The Lady Wildcats trailed Central Valley by two points before Janie Natale drained a 3-point shot shortly before the buzzer to win the nonsection match, 37-35.
“It was a tight game. It was nice to get back on the winning column,” Shenango coach Ricci LaRocco said. “Janie Natale hit a three with six seconds left and we were down two. We run what we run. Janine is obviously our perimeter threat; she showed a lot to step it up and knock it down.”
Shenango (8-5) held a one-point over the Lady Warriors going into halftime.
Central Valley (4-7) would go on to tie the game in the third quarter before falling short.
Natale chipped in 16 points for the Lady ‘Cats and grabbed 10 rebounds. Kylee Rubin netted 11 points and had 12 rebounds.
“We had a big section game against Neshannock and to come back a couple days later, we’re getting better,” LaRocco said. “They’re fighting and working hard; execution isn’t where I want it to be, as always their effort is outstanding.”
Neshannock 80, New Brighton 13
The Neshannock High girls basketball team took an early lead and continued its momentum during the first half against New Brighton on Wednesday.
The Lady Lancers had a clear grasp on the Section 1-2A matchup victory.
“We jumped out big early and scored 38 in the first quarter, and you kind of just got to back off and let everyone play,” Neshannock coach Luann Grybowski said. “We subbed freely throughout the game, but the second half our top five sat. The kids just play so well together, they make an extra pass to get the open guy. No one on this team is selfish and that’s the beauty of these kids ... it’s fun to watch and fun to coach.”
Neshannock (6-0 section, 13-1 overall) picked up 21 additional baskets in the second quarter before going into the second half.
The Lady Lancers defensive pressure was on full display against the Lady Lions (0-6, 2-9).
New Bright could only net nine points in the first half and was shut out in the fourth quarter.
The win marks the 698th career victory for Grybowski, who is in her 42nd year of coaching.
“It’s a milestone for sure,” Grybowski said. “This doesn’t happen without good kids. It’s really a testament to everywhere I’ve been. Every place I’ve gone has really treated me well, the kids are great and the parents are great.”
Neleh Nogay drained 15 points with five steals and five assists.
Mairan Haggerty and Megan Pallerino both chipped in 14 points. Haggerty also grabbed 10 rebounds, seven steals, five assists and three block shots.
Addi Watts had seven assists and five steals and Hunter Newman had eight rebounds, three assists and three steals.
CENTRAL VALLEY 54, SHENANGO 25
Shenango dropped a 54-25 nonsection decision against Central Valley.
“We’ve just got to get back to the drawing board and get ready for Laurel and put this behind us and move on,” Shenango coach Bob McQuiston said. “We’ve just got to look at the film. We didn’t play well, we had 19 turnovers tonight. We took 32 shots with 19 turnovers.”
The Wildcats (2-10) struggled to find a tempo in the first half, putting up 11 points to Central Valley’s 23.
Shenango trailed the entire game and into the second half while Central Valley (5-4) netted 31 points to cruise to the victory.
“We have to reevaluate ourselves as a team and start putting some points on the board,” McQuiston said. “That’s been our Achilles’ heel is turnovers.”