By Josh Verlin
Half of the 128 teams who started off last weekend with Pennsylvania state title hopes are gone, with 16 left in each of the state’s four classifications for the second round that takes place over the next two days.
We’ll be splitting our previews of the second round up by night–Class A and AAA play on Tuesday night while AA and AAA play on Wednesday.
AAA: Neumann-Goretti (12-1) vs. Manheim Central (3-4)
Garden Spot HS; New Holland, Pa., 7:30 PM
The defending champion Saints are going to have their hands full in this one, against a tough, physical team from the Harrisburg area. The Barons finished a perfect 16-0 in Lancaster-Lebanon Section 3 play, making it to the semifinals of the District 3 AAA tournament before consecutive losses to Bishop McDevitt and Susquehanna Township handed them the fourth seed. They boast one of central Pennsylvania’s top player in 6-foot-5, 220-pound senior forward Matt Walsh, a tough, physical wing who can score from inside and out. Walsh could certainly cause some problems, especially when paired with 6-8 sophomore Taylor Funk, a Division I prospect with good shooting range and a Boston U offer already under his belt.
But those Neumann-Goretti guards are going to present a huge matchup problem for a Manheim Central squad that just can’t match N-G’s four Division I prospects in the backcourt. Carl Arrigale‘s squad, led by SJU commit Lamarr Kimble and super sophomore Quade Green, a pair of 6-0 guards who can both knock down shots from the perimeter as well as get into the lane and find their teammates. As the Saints go for their fifth state title in six years, don’t expect that journey to end this soon.