By Will Slover
The field for the Pennsylvania Independent School Athletic Association (PAISAA) semifinals might look a little familiar to some, as the same four teams who reached this round last year will all be back for another shot at the title.
The only differences from last year are that this year’s bouts will take place at Malvern Prep, as opposed to last season’s venue of Penn Charter and the match-ups differ as well. Last season, Westtown Academy was pitted against Episcopal and Germantown Academy took on the Hill School.
So while the settings surrounding the contests may be different, four familiar teams are back and will be giving it their all to reach PAISAA glory and win the coveted state championship.
Here’s a look at Friday night’s games:
Game 2: No. 2 The Hill School vs. No. 3 Episcopal Academy (8:00 PM)
The second matchup of the night will pit the two losers of last year’s semifinal games against each other to see who will be able to reverse last year’s fortunes and earn a spot in the championship. The Hill School’s game plan will depend on the potential return of 7-foot-1 senior Solomon Ruddell. Ruddell, the UC-Irvine commit, has been sidelined for the last two games with a concussion. Filling in for Ruddell in his absence has been Chase Audige, Colton Lawrence, and Ethan Norton. Audige, a 6-foot-4 junior, stuffed the box scored in Hill’s 63-46 quarterfinal win over the Haverford School as he turned in a 22-point, seven-assist, six-rebound, four-steal performance to lead the way for the Blues. Lawrence, a senior, added in another 15 points and eight rebounds while Norton dished out six assists, grabbed five rebounds, blocked four shots and stole the ball twice.