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Blackhawk's Omogrosso nears 2,000 points

Written by Mike White on .

Chassidy Omogrosso has four "O's" in her last name. She will soon have three zeroes in her scoring total.

Omogrosso is a senior guard on the Blackhawk girls basketball team who will, barring injury, reach 2,000 career points either tonight or Friday. Blackhawk plays Ellwood City tonight and Mercyhurst Prep Friday.

Omogrosso has 1,972 points. She has been a starter since her freshman year and is a two-time Post-Gazette Fabulous 5 selection. She has signed with Duquesne University.

A total of 36 players in WPIAL history have scored 2,000 career points. The last to do it were Hopewell's Shatori Walker-Kimbrough and Jeannette's Ciara Gregory two years ago. The way Omogrosso scores, she would seemingly have a chance to reach the top 10 scorers in the WPIAL by the end of the season. Blackhawk is one of the top Class AAA teams in the state and the defending PIAA champion.

The WPIAL's all-time leading scorer is Monessen's Gina Naccarato, a 1996 graduate who scored 3,364 points. The No. 10 scorer in WPIAL history is Albert Gallatin's Lou Hall, who scored 2,440.

But Omogrosso likely won't be the only WPIAL player to reach 2,000 this season. Vincentian's Brenna Wise entered the season with 1,685 career points.

Wise is a Pitt recruit.

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PIAA upholds WPIAL rulings on two Lincoln Park basketball players

Written by Mike White on .

The PIAA had appeal hearings today with two boys basketball players who had transferred to Lincoln Park in the past year.

The PIAA upheld the WPIAL on both cases. Nick Aloi was ruled ineligible to play at Lincoln Park until Jan. 21. Aloi transferred from Ellwood City to Lincoln Park on Jan. 21 of this year and the WPIAL ruled the move was at least partly for athletic reasons.

When Aloi first had a hearing with the WPIAL in April of this year, he and his parents claimed he switched to Lincoln Park, a charter school, to better himself academically to become a doctor, like his parents.

Lincoln Park had become a basketball power in Class A and moved up to Class AA this season. While Aloi will miss more than a dozen games, he will still be able to play the final six, as well as the playoffs. Aloi is a junior guard who averaged 15 points a game two years ago as a freshman at Ellwood City. Aloi missed his sophomore season because of a knee injury. Ellwood City was 7-37 the past two seasons.

The PIAA also ruled Jihad Cromer ineligible to play at Lincoln Park this season for allegedly transferring from Sto-Rox at least partly for athletic reasons. At a WPIAL hearing in November, Cromer's mother said her son transferred for academic reasons. But at the hearing, Sto-Rox officials said Cromer's mother never showed much interest in her son's academics while he attended Sto-Rox.

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Ambridge coach Jula wins 500th

Written by Mike White on .

Mark Jula joined an elite group of WPIAL boys basketball coaches with a win Tuesday night.

Ambridge defeated Ellwood City, 69-37, to give Jula his 500th career win.

Fewer than 20 WPIAL coaches have 500 career wins. The only active coaches known to have 500 wins are Ringgold's Phil Pergola, Monessen's Joe Salvino, Central Catholic's Chuck Crummie and Sewickley Academy's Win Palmer.

Jula is in his third season at Ambridge but he has been a head coach for 34 seasons. His record is 500-321.

Besides Ambridge, Jula has coached Center, North Allegheny, Butler and Moon in the WPIAL, and Solanco and Boyertown in eastern Pa. 

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Hayes' run leads South Fayette to state title

Written by Mike White on .

 This time, the Bucks were chasing the Hunter – but couldn’t catch him.

With his team trailing late in the third quarter of the PIAA Class AA championship game and backed up deep in its own territory, South Fayette running back Hunter Hayes took a handoff, burst into the open and outran a number of defenders on his way to a 95-yard touchdown run.

South Fayette celebrationThe score gave South Fayette the lead for good and the Lions went on to defeat Dunmore, 28-16, at Hersheypark Stadium.

Hayes’ run was memorable – and not just for South Fayette, the WPIAL champion. It was the longest touchdown run in 27 years of state championship games.

(At left, Matt O'Rourke and Ryan Schmider hold up some new hardware for the South Fayette trophy case. P-G photo by Matt Freed).

Hayes, a senior, finished with 263 yards on 27 carries and scored two touchdowns to help South Fayette win its second consecutive PIAA title and the Lions finished with a perfect record for the second year in a row. South Fayette’s 16-0 finish ran its winning streak to 32 games, fourth-longest in WPIAL history.

South Fayette needed Hayes’ effort because quarterback Brett Brumbaugh, the most prolific passer in the history of Pennsylvania football, had an off day. Brumbaugh went over 11,000 yards passing for his career, but was only 8 of 18 for 120 yards.

Hayes’ long touchdown came after South Fayette’s defense made a great stand. Dunmore moved to the South Fayette 1, but an illegal substitution penalty moved the ball back to the 6. Facing fourth-and-goal from the 5, Dunmore elected not to kick a field goal. But a pass fell incomplete.

Hayes scored on the next play and Brumbaugh tacked on a 37-yard touchdown pass to Dam Trimbur in the fourth quarter to seal the win.

The win completed a comeback for the Lions. South Fayette had to feel fortunate, trailing by only 16-14 at halftime. Brumbaugh was not sharp in the first half, completing only 5 of 14 for 65 yards.

Dunmore took a 6-0 lead on Garrett Murray’s 34-yard touchdown run, but South Fayette went ahead, 7-6, on Hunter Hayes’ 9-yard scoring run and Trimbur’s kick. But Dunmore got a 4-yard touchdown run by Colin Holmes and a 27-yard field goal from Joey Capooci to take a 16-7 lead.

South Fayette closed within two points when Ryan Schmider caught a 9-yard touchdown pass from Brumbaugh with 1:28 left in the half.

Holmes fumbled the ball and Jeremy Carter recovered for South Fayette at the Dunmore 42 with 29.3 seconds left in the half. The Lions picked up a first down, but Trimbur missed a 37-yard field goal with 1.6 seconds left in the half. 

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Live Saturday Class AA championship blog - South Fayette wins Class AA state title

Written by Mike White on .

Live blog from Saturday's PIAA Class AA championship game between South Fayette and Dunmore.

FINAL SCORE: SOUTH FAYETTE 28, DUNMORE 16

South Fayette wins the title for the second year in a row and finish perfect for the second year in a row.

SOUTH FAYETTE 28, DUNMORE 16

And the Lions are roaring. After Dunmore punts, Brett Brumbaugh throws a 37-yard TD pass to Dan Trimbur. PAT good.

Hunter Hayes now has 205 yards rushing on 18 carries after three quarters.

SOUTH FAYETTE 21, DUNMORE 16

What a turnaround. Dunmore close to scoring and going up by nine. Within 14 seconds, South Fayette is winning 21-16. On first play after Dunmore went for it on fourth-and-goal from 5, Hunter Hayes takes a handoff and goes 95 yards for a touchdown. Wow. PAT good and suddenly South Fayette leads, 21-16.

2:08 South Fayette defense digs in. Dunmore gets to the 1. Illegal substitution penalty moves it back to the 5. Go for it on fourth and turn it over.

2:03 Good blocking up front. Strong runners. Dunmore running over South Fayette.

1:59 Now Dunmore on the move. To the South Fayette 23.

1:50 South Fayette on the move in the third quarter. It seems good ol "Mo" is on South Fayette side.

1:43 Second half has begun.

Below, Hunter Hayes battles for yardage (P-G photo by Matt Freed).

SFayette-Dunmore

STATS: Brett Brumbaugh 5 of 14 for 65 yards passing in first half. Dunmore's Garrett Murray has rushed for 63 yards on 7 carries.

HALFTIME: DUNMORE 16, SOUTH FAYETTE 14

Dan Trimbur missed 37-yard field goal with 1 second left in half.

1:16 Third-down pass complete by Brumbaugh for 22 yards to the 20. Timeout with 6.8 seconds left.

1:14 Big mistake by Dunmore. Holmes fumbles and South Fayette's Jeremy Carter recovers at Dunmore 42 with 29 seconds left.

DUNMORE 16, SOUTH FAYETTE 14

Brett Brumbaugh hits Ryan Schmider with 9 yard touchdown pass. Kick good. With the TD pass, Brumbaugh went over 11,000 yards passing for career.

1:03 South Fayette defense digs in. Dunmore punts from own 1. South Fayette takes over at Dunmore 24 with 2:28 left in half.

1:00 - Big mistake by South Fayette. Lions driving but Hunter Hayes fumbles and Dunmore's Eric DeLuccie recovers at 8-yard line. Less than 5 minutes now left in half.

12:54 Brett Brumbaugh is struggling and he knows it. Just missed a pass and snapped his chin strap off helmet in frustration. Brumbaugh now only 2 of 9.

But the kid has had games where he is off target for a while, and then something clicks in. We'll see.

DUNMORE 16, SOUTH FAYETTE 7

Dunmore gets 27-yard field goal from Joe Capooci with 9:09 left in half.

12:46 First-quarter stats: Dunmore with 118 yards rushing and 149 total yards. South Fayette with 72 total yards. Brett Brumbaugh has completed 2 of 7 for 28 yards.

12:44 Dunmore inside the South Fayette 20. South Fayette can't stop power running game.

12:43 First quarter has just ended. Dunmore still leads, 13-7.

DUNMORE 13, SOUTH FAYETTE 7

South Fayette can't stop Dunmore's power run. Dunmore goes 67 yards for a score. 4-yard run by Colin Holmes. PAT good by Joe Capooci.

12:26 South Fayette is ganged up to stop the run. 9-10 players within five yards of line of scrimmage.

SOUTH FAYETTE 7, DUNMORE 6

South Fayette answers with impressive 60-yard drive. Only one pass completion in drive by Brumbaugh. Hunter Hayes caps it with a 9-yard run. Dan Trimbur kick.

DUNMORE 6, SOUTH FAYETTE 0

Few plays after interception, Dunmore's Garrett Murray goes 34 yards off tackle for TD. PAT missed.

12:14 South Fayette throws on first two plays and Brett Brumabugh overthrows a receiver and is intercepted Dunmore takes over at 50.

 

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