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Pittsburgh Classic features a coaching matchup for the ages

Written by Mike White on .

The Pittsburgh High School Classic is a two-day basketball event this weekend at Montour High School. John Giammarco of the Pittsburgh Basketball Club runs the event and makes the matchups of teams.

Little did Giammarco know that he created a coaching matchup for the ages.

Monessen plays Sewickley Academy Sunday at 4:45. The game matches two coaches with 1,214 wins between them.

Monessen is coached by Joe Salvino, who surpassed 600 wins last season and has a record of 614-244. Sewickley Academy's Win Palmer just got his 600th win Tuesday night and has a record of 600-271. 

Only 12 coaches in the history of the WPIAL have won more than 600 games. It is believed to be the first time that two with 600 have ever met. Palmer started his coaching career in Virginia in 1981 while Salvino started at Monessen in 1984.

Besides the coaching matchup, Sewickley Academy vs. Monessen is one of the best games of the Pittsburgh High School Classic. Monessen is ranked No. 1 by the Post-Gazette in WPIAL Class 1A while Sewickley Academy is ranked No. 2 in WPIAL 2A.

Besides the games this weekend, the eighth annual Pittsburgh Basketball Club hall of fame class will be inducted at a brunch Saturday. I'll have highlights from that brunch over the next few days.

As for the games, there are four Saturday and five Sunday at Montour. 

On Saturday, Vincentian meets Quaker Valley at 3. Vincentian has a 12-game winning streak, but the Royals, No. 2 in Class A, might find it hard to stay with the No. 1 team in 4A. Bethel Park meets Seneca Valley at 4:30 and will be followed by Pine-Richland and Montour at 6 p.m. Hempfield meets Bishop Canevin in the final game at 7:30.

On Sunday, Seton-LaSalle and Montour kick things off at noon, followed by Chartiers Valley and Aliquippa at 1:30. Another interesting game at 3 matches North Hills against Allderdice. The Monessen-Sewickley Academy game is at 4:45 and the event concludes with Mars playing Lincoln Park at 6:15.

The Mars-Lincoln Park would have featured two of the premier guards in the area in Mars' Robby Carmody and Lincoln Park's Nelly Cummings. But Carmody will not play because of an injured ankle. Carmody has missed the past few games because of the injury and it is not known when he will return. I would guess maybe next week.

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