Girl’s – Dakota and Pandas still heading north in state tourney

By Matt Smith

Bonner & Prendergast is the complete package.

The Pandas run, shoot and defend. And they have players who dominate the low post with their combination of size and athleticism.

They had some tough setbacks this winter, but are built for the long run in the PIAA Class 4A tournament.

After a 73-47 romp of District 3’s Bishop McDevitt, the Bonner & Prendie girls team joined the boys team in their respective PIAA Final Four showdowns.

“This is our best team we’ve had in the last four years. We all want it,” said senior guard Maeve McCann, who was outstanding. “We’re all trying our very best. We’ve improved our defense so much, it’s crazy. Having everyone’s shots falling, and having everyone on the same page, it changes the whole entire game.

“Even from the regular season, we just have a whole new mindset.”

Bonner & Prendergast will meet Bethlehem Catholic in the semifinal round Tuesday.

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Wong, Ingraham help get Bonner & Prendergast back to state semifinals

Dave Burman with Tariq Ingraham after Bonner-Prendie defeated Archbishop Carroll. Our post game interview with Tariq is at the 1:56:56 mark of the game archive.

By Rich Flanagan

When Isaiah Wong and Tariq Ingraham transferred over to Bonner & Prendergast prior to last season, the expectations for the Friars grew exponentially.

Having both come from out of state (Wong from Notre Dame in New Jersey and Ingraham from Salesianum in Wilmington, Del.), they, along with Ajiri Johnson (Rider) took Bonner & Prendie to new, hyped heights, with an appearance in the Philadelphia Catholic League championship game as well as a trip to the state semifinals.

But Wong noted the Friars needed to realize hype doesn’t necessarily translate into results on the court.

“This year, we wanted to play a lot smarter,” Wong said. “Last year, we felt over-hyped and we got that into our heads. It’s something we still struggle with as a team and I feel like we’re going to continue to work on it going into the next game.”

They put some of that improved composure to work Friday night with a ferocious comeback against Nanticoke and they carried that into Friday’s clash with neighboring Catholic League rival Archbishop Carroll.

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Webmaster’s note: The PIAA 4A quarter-final round playoff game between Bonner-Prendie and Archbishop Carroll was our Game-of-the-Week and can be heard in its entirety below or on our Archived Broadcasts link listed in the menu at the top of our page.

Girl’s – DeSimone’s barrage leads Archbishop Carroll past Archbishop Wood in PIAA-5A quarters

By Andrew Robinson

Mary DeSimone really wanted to make Archbishop Wood pay.

Within the first few possessions of Saturday’s PIAA 5A girls basketball quarterfinal against Wood, the Archbishop Carroll senior saw the Vikings were leaving her open, daring her to beat them. DeSimone used it as fuel and then torched Wood.

Behind DeSimone’s blistering shooting and another sterling game from Erin Sweeny, the Patriots beat the Vikings for the third time, with the 63-48 win at Cardinal O’Hara sending Carroll to the state semifinals for the second straight year.

“It makes you a little angry,” DeSimone said. “All you can do it shoot it and prove them wrong.”

The Patriots will tangle with District 11 champion Southern Lehigh in Tuesday’s semifinal round.

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Sun Valley falls to defending champ, doesn’t lose pride

Sun Valley’s Marvin Freeman scores in the second half over Pottsgrove’s Ryan Bpdolulus, right, as Pottsgrove defeated the Vanguards in PIAA 5A District semifinals at Norristown Area High School Wednesday night. (Digital First Media/Pete Bannan)

By Bob Grotz

Drained like his basketball team, Sun Valley coach Steve Maloney turned the corner from the locker room to a rousing ovation.Vanguards basketball fans flooded both sides of the hallway, cheering and clapping as he walked up the corridor at Bethlehem Freedom High School.

The crowd stuck around to pay its respects long after the Vanguards were ousted, 61-46, in the quarterfinal round of the PIAA Class 5A playoffs by defending state champion Abington Heights.

At that point it was the only thing that could put a smile on the face of Maloney, whose squad got within six points of the fast-starting Comets just once in the second half, with 6:17 remaining, on a turnaround by Isaac Kennon.

Now for the bad news. Jack Nealon, who scored 19 points, ended the threat with a three-pointer almost from the Comets’ gym in Clarks Summit, that mountainy place at the northern end of the Northeast Extension.

“We got it to six,” Maloney said. “We battled. We just didn’t come up with that one big play to get us over the hump. And they’re really good. They’re talented. You don’t win a championship and bring four starters back and not be good. And I think that was the coach’s 800th win.”

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Girl’s – McAteer, determined Jaguars fashion quarterfinal comeback

Garnet Valley players celebrate at the close of their 47-45 victory over Council Rock North in a PIAA Class 6A girls basketball quarterfinal game Friday night at Norristown Area High School. PETE BANNAN – MEDIANEWS GROUP

By Matt Smith

Garnet Valley had one quarter to figure everything out.

Council Rock North’s run-and-gun offense had left the District 1 champion Jaguars catching their breath for three periods Friday night at Norristown Area High School. They were getting beaten down the floor. The fifth option in CR North’s offense was cutting to the basket uncontested and scoring.

On the other side of the court, GV had put up eight points in the third quarter. A 3-for-10 shooting effort from the floor wasn’t good enough. The District 1 champion Jags trailed the District 1 seventh-place finisher by seven points.

But it almost felt like an insurmountable deficit.

Garnet Valley, a team consisting of five senior starters, didn’t panic, even when the Jags were frustrated to the point of screaming. That’s what guard Morgan Falcone nearly did when she was clearly hacked in the process of shooting a buzzer-beating 3-pointer that fell short.

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Girl’s – Mullin, Neshaminy put end to O’Hara’s growing season

Cardinal O’Hara sophomore Siobhan Boylan, left, scored 12 points Friday night in the Lions’ loss to Neshaminy in the quarterfinals of the PIAA Class 6A tournament. Photo by: Digital First Media

By Matt Smith

Cardinal O’Hara’s surprising run in the PIAA Class 6A tournament was halted in the quarterfinal round Friday night.

The District 12 champion Lions couldn’t quite contain Neshaminy senior Brooke Mullin, who collected 11 of her game-high 15 points in the second half to lead the Redskins to a 47-35 victory.

“Brooke Mullin is so good,” O’Hara senior guard Kerry Patterson said. “Alli (Harvey) is a good shooter and their point guard, Kristin (Curley), is a real good player. They have a lot of girls who can shoot and score. They all work really good together, so to guard them was kind of hard.

“Overall, I thought we did a pretty good job, it was just toward the end of the game when we started to get down on ourselves a little bit.”

Which is what happens with young teams sometimes.

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