BG takes section title

By Michael Boytim

Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic celebrated its senior night Thursday with a chance to clinch Section 1 of the Laurel Highlands Athletic Conference, and things got off to a slow start at the Pleasant Valley Gymnasium.

With 3:38 to play in the first quarter, Cambria Heights led the Marauders by two, and BG’s Nick Scaramozzino had just picked up his second foul.

Then Mark Conrad’s 3-pointer seemed to flip a switch.

Bishop Guilfoyle went on a 24-0 run in an eventual 77-44 triumph.

“I’m always nervous on senior night, because everyone’s routine is off,” Bishop Guilfoyle coach Chris Drenning said. “There’s a lot of emotion, but tonight we got off to a good start and things kind of snow-balled.”

Senior A.J. Labriola led all scorers with 19 points while fellow senior Charles Patterson had nine points and 12 rebounds.

On the other side of the LHAC, Johnstown clinched Section 2 with a 58-46 victory over Bishop McCort. The Marauders beat the Trojans at Pleasant Valley Gymnasium, 74-67, on Jan. 22.

“Section 1 is brutal,” Drenning said. “This is our third year in a row. We may have been a year ahead of schedule two years ago, and the last two years it has worked out. There’s a lot of good teams in the section with scholarship players on their teams. To get through that three years in a row says a lot about our senior class.”

Another senior, Mike Scharf, finished with 13 points and connected on three of Bishop Guilfoyle’s 10 3-pointers.

Along with the LHAC championship game, the Marauders still have plenty to play for before the regular season ends.

“If we win Monday against a really good Homer-Center team, we should be the No. 1 seed,” Drenning said. “The biggest thing is we want to be playing better basketball going into the playoffs. We had a little rough patch where we weren’t doing the right things in practice, but the last couple practices have been very good. We’ll get a week off before playoffs, and I think that will really help us.”

Cambria Heights got 13 points from Liam Wholaver and 11 points from Brandon Bearer. The Highlanders finished the season 6-16.

“It was definitely a battle,” Cambria Heights coach Eric Nagle said. “We play in the Laurel Highlands night in and night out, and there’s some really good teams in there. You saw one here tonight. We had six games where we lost by an average of five points. We were there every night ready to battle. That’s this league.”

Bearer, Nick Brawley and Lucas Fox played in their final games for Heights.

“They are high-character kids,” Nagle said. “You talk about a group of kids who are good kids, respectful kids and kids who are going to do something in life, that’s those three. They are high-quality kids.”

Notes: Kathy Shaffer won a drawing at halftime for $10,000. … Cambria Heights turned the ball over 24 times. … Saint Francis commit Luke Ruggery scored 14 points off the bench.

CAMBRIA HEIGHTS (44): Wholaver 4 3-5 13, Brawley 4 0-0 8, Bearer 3 3-4 11, Maul 1 0-2 3, Fox 1 0-0 2, Lieb 3 1-2 7, Ratay 0 0-0 0, Weakland 0 0-0 0, Lee 0 0-0 0, Coover 0 0-0 0. Totals — 16 7-13 44.

BISHOP GUILFOYLE (77): Labriola 9 0-2 19, Scaramozzino 2 0-0 4, Pleva 1 0-0 3, Patterson 4 1-2 9, Conrad 2 0-0 6, Scharf 5 0-0 13, L. Ruggery 5 2-2 14, Montecalvo 1 0-0 3, Helton 0 0-0 0, K. Ruggery 0 0-0 0, Witherspoon 1 0-0 2, Kenner 2 0-0 4, Yanoshak 0 0-0 0. Totals — 32 3-6 77.


Cambria Heights 6 7 17 14 — 44

Bishop Guilfoyle 18 23 17 19 — 77

3-point goals: Cambria Heights 5 (Wholaver 2, Bearer 2, Maul); Bishop Guilfoyle 10 (Scharf 3, Conrad 2, L. Ruggery 2, Montecalvo, Pleva, Labriola).

Records: Cambria Heights (6-16, 2-8 in LHAC Section 1); Bishop Guilfoyle (16-5, 8-2 in LHAC Section 1).

Officials: Tyler Fink, Dave Pray, John Thompson

JV: Bishop Guilfoyle, 61-19. High scorers–Travis Lee, CH, 9; Kyle Ruggery, BG, 13.