Boys’ Basketball Falls in WPIAL Semi-finals

John Madeira

The 2102-2013 school year has been a historically good one for Seneca Valley varsity sports, and the boys’ basketball team has continued that.

Girls’ soccer made the WPIAL finals, boys soccer made it to the quarters, football made it to the semifinals, swimming sent 19 swimmers/divers to WPIALs, and boys’ basketball continued that trend as they were semifinalists.

The Raiders finished fourth in the historically difficult WPIAL AAAA section 3, behind New Castle, Hampton, and North Allegheny.  Section 3 sent four teams to the semifinals, the first semifinals to include all four teams from the same section.

A 16-7 regular season record earned the Raiders a 12 seed in the 16 team playoff, and had a date with fifth ranked Central Catholic at North Hills high school.

Seneca Valley captains Easton Bazzoli and RJ McCauley came up huge for the Raiders as they rolled to an easy win. McCauley went off for 26 points and Bazzoli scored 22 in a blowout 72-41 win over the Vikings.

Next up was the Panthers from Upper St. Clair, and again the Raiders took care of business.

Playing the fourth seeded Panthers who had a regular season record of 20-3, McCauley and the rest of the team weren’t impressed.

Upper St. Clair was held scoreless until 4:44 to go in the second quarter, and the Panthers were never able to recover.

For the second straight game McCauley led the team in scoring, putting up 13 points, as the Raiders rolled to a 44-34 victory. The win against Upper St. Clair earned the Raiders a date with the number one seed, the New Castle Red Hurricanes.

New Castle proved too much to handle for third time this year as the two section 3 teams battled it out again.

Bazzoli led the Raiders in scoring with 18, but New Castle rolled to another victory by a score of 71-46. New Castle’s Shawn Anderson was the leading scorer for the game with 28.

The WPIAL finals for AAAA match up New Castle against Hampton, two teams in their first year as members of AAAA.

Despite the loss, Seneca Valley qualified for the PIAA state championship tournament.