HIGH SCHOOL BOYS' BASKETBALL ROUNDUP: Homer-Center's Rado wins 400th career game
First-place Homer-Center turned a tight game into a blowout in the second half, helping head coach Bob Rado earn his 400th career win with a 72-57 victory over host Marion Center in a Heritage Conference boys’ basketball game Wednesday.
The Wildcats built a two-point halftime lead, 38-36, and then outscored the Stingers, 34-21, in the second half, including 20-13 in the fourth quarter.
“It’s a great feeling,” said Rado, who’s coaching in his 35th season. “Marion Center is the first place I ever won a basketball game, so it’s definitely ironic. This is really all about the kids, though. I’ve coached a lot of good players over the years, but this year has been really fun.”
Robert Della Penna scored a career-high 25 points to pace Homer-Center. Darren Carr chipped in 16 points, and Joe Capitosti had 11.
Todd Fetsko scored a game-best 28 points to lead the Stingers. Hunter Stiteler added 10 points.
Homer-Center (14-1, 9-0 conference) plays host to Penns Manor on Friday. Marion Center (9-6) welcomes DuBois on Monday.
BLAIRSVILLE 62, SALTBURG 42: Troy Williams scored a season-high 28 points, two other Blairsville players reached double figures in scoring, and the Bobcats rolled over visiting Saltsburg in a Heritage Conference game.
The Bobcats jumped out to a 13-point halftime lead, 31-18, before scoring 20 points in the third quarter to carry a 20-point lead, 51-31, into the fourth.
“We put a full-court press on and got some turnovers and got up pretty early,” Blairsville coach Mark DeMarines said.
Colton McMillan chipped in 14 points for Blairsville. Cameron Livingston added 10 points.
Nick Porter led Saltsburg with 11 points. Ian Satler tacked on 10 points.
Both teams play Friday. Blairsville (11-1, 9-0) plays host to United and Saltsburg (6-7, 4-5) welcomes Purchase Line.
UNITED 91, NORTHERN CAMBRIA 50: Two United players posted career-highs in points, and the Lions tallied a season-best in field goals and points to thump host Northern Cambria in a Heritage Conference game.
The Lions’ Mike Gill notched career-highs in points and rebounds with 22 and 15, respectively. James Currie grabbed seven rebounds and scored a career-high 16 points, Jake Beacker added nine points, six assists and five steals, Blake Brendlinger had nine points and six assists, and Caleb McAdoo chipped in 11 points and seven rebounds.
Joe Olish scored 15 points to lead Northern Cambria. Seth Bearer added 12 points.
United made 40 field goals and 8 of 13 free throws.
Both teams play on the road Thursday. United (6-8) travels to Blairsville and Northern Cambria heads to Ligonier Valley.
PENNS MANOR 61, PURCHASE LINE 53: Penns Manor jumped on Purchase Line early and used a late burst to notch its first win of the year in a Heritage Conference game in Kenwood.
The Comets built an eight-point first-quarter lead and held a six-point halftime advantage, 28-22.
Penns Manor outscored the Red Dragons, 33-31, in the second half.
Mitch Hamilton scored 15 points to lead Penns Manor. Brandon Alter added 13 points, and Brad Remaley scored 11.
Eric Faught scored 11 points to pace the Red Dragons.
Both teams play on the road Friday. Penns Manor (1-14) travels to Homer-Center and Purchase Line (5-7, 3-6) heads to Saltsburg.
HIGHLANDS 63, APOLLO-RIDGE 46: Apollo-Ridge got off to a sluggish start and never recovered, and the Vikings lost to Highlands in a WPIAL non-section game in Natrona Heights.
Freshman Duane Brown scored 14 points to power the Vikings. Alex Smith added 10 points.
Apollo-Ridge (13-3) travels to Deer Lakes on Friday.