Leechburg girls lose, 56-0; Coach says opponent "wanted" shutout

Written by Mike White on .

In tomorrow's paper, the Post-Gazette will run leading scorers from both teams for every WPIAL basketball game played tonight.

But next to the Leechburg girls will be white space.

Final score from tonight: Ford City 56, Leechburg 0.

Seriously. A shutout in basketball.

Really? Yes. Has it ever happened before in the WPIAL? Yes, at least once in boys basketball. Wilkinsburg beat Kiski Area, 8-0, in 1978. Yes, the game was a slowdown.

And technically, there was a shutout earlier this year in girls basketball. Serra was leading Wilkinsburg, 28-0, after the first quarter earlier when Wilkinsburg left because of a snowstorm. The official score is 28-0.

But a girls game ends in a shutout after four quarters? When there wasn't a slowdown? Yes, incredible. But Leechburg is bad - with a 1-12 record. And the team had scored only 4, 5 and 9 points in three of its past four games.

Still, it makes you wonder what Ford City did? Should Ford City have done something to let Leechburg score?

Well, we don't know yet what Ford City coach Al Davis has to say about the game. Someone at his home said earlier tonight that he wasn't feeling well and was already asleep.

Leechburg coach Joel Ceraso wasn't feeling very well, either, but only because of what happened tonight at Ford City. He did not have a lot of good to say about Davis and his team.

"The bottom line is we really have only one girl who can play [Missy Jones] and she didn't play because of a concussion," Ceraso said. "She's about the only one who can dribble. The other ones really couldn't handle the pressure.

"But honestly, [Davis] put it to us and kept the accelerator on into the fourth quarter. I really think he wanted the shutout and he got it."

Ford City led by 16-0 after the first quarter, 32-0 at halftime and by 46-0 after the third quarter. When asked if Ford City pressed much, Ceraso said, "They pressed the whole first quarter. Then he played half court man-to-man the rest of the way, but it was with a lot of pressure on the ball out high. And he let his starters in pretty much until well into the fourth quarter."

When asked if he was bitter, Ceraso said, "I'm not really bitter. Just a little disappointed. But it is what it is. Some people are like that. But there is a life lesson to be learned here."

And what would that lesson be?

"It would be that sometimes nobody will cut you a break," Ceraso said. "Life is tough sometimes and no matter how hard it is going to be, people won't cut you a break."

Maybe Ford City could not have guarded Leechburg sometimes. In other words, just let them dribble up the court to the basket and let them shoot. Ceraso didn't necessarily want that.

"I'm not a big guy for participation trophies and I'm not big on just letting someone do something," Ceraso said. "But I would've liked to see them maybe play a little more zone. Maybe we would've had a chance at a shot or two. But he didn't play hardly any zone.

"But I believe in karma, too. Everything goes around, comes around."

By the way, Leechburg is 1-12 and the only win was over Wilkinsburg. The score was 44-17. It makes you wonder what is Wilkinsburg like.


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