Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Regulation not enough in Section 4-AAAA

If you're looking to play a little extra basketball, and you're a boy, Section 4-AAAA is the place for you.

All eight of the teams in the section have played at least one overtime game so far. And this only halfway through the section schedule. Check it out:

Bethel Park 7-0, 12-1 ... 2-0 in OT (wins over Trinity, Peters Township)
Upper St. Clair 6-1, 10-3 ... 2-0 in OT (wins over Peters Township, Mt. Lebanon)
Trinity 3-4, 9-6 ... 0-3 in OT (losses to Moon, Bethel Park and Canon-McMillan)
Canon-McMillan 3-4, 8-7 ... 2-0 in OT (wins over Trinity, Mt. Lebanon)
Moon 3-4, 7-7 ... 1-0 in OT (win over Trinity)
Mt. Lebanon 3-4, 6-9 ... 0-2 in OT (losses to Canon-McMillan, Upper St. Clair)
Peters Township 2-5, 5-9 ... 0-3 in OT (losses to Bethel Park, Upper St. Clair and Baldwin)
Baldwin 1-6, 5-10 ... 1-0 in OT (win over Peters Township)

No surprise that the standings show Bethel Park and Upper St. Clair up top, a combined 4-0 in OT games, 13-1 in section play.

The glut of teams at 3-4 -- Trinity, Canon-McMillan, Moon and Mt. Lebanon -- is certainly intriguing. Not shocked that Big Macs coach Rick Bell has willed two extra-time wins out of his team, including a triple-overtime thriller over a young Mt. Lebanon squad.

A little surprised that Trinity is 0-3 in overtime games, especially considering the Hillers returned all five starters. Granted one of them, Avery King, has missed time because of an injury, but no doubt the Hillers dropped some games they feel they should have won.

Speaking of that, think there's anybody in the WPIAL happier to close the books on the first half of the season than Peters Township, also 0-3 in the extra session or sessions. Here's a look at the Indians' section sked:

12/14 at Mt. Lebanon ... 48-45 L
12/18 vs. Moon ... 61-49 W
12/21 at Trinity ... 53-51 L
1/4 vs. Bethel Park ... 61-59 L (OT)
1/8 vs. Upper St. Clair ... 67-62 (2OT)
1/11 at Baldwin ... 60-52 L (OT)
1/15 vs. Canon-McMillan ... 59-49 L

Six conference losses by a total of 30 points, an average of five per contest.

"It's been a tough year," Indians coach Gary Goga told me after this past Saturday's loss at Wash High. "But we have a great group of kids, and we're going to keep fighting."

I don't doubt that. But this is one heck of a section to be doing it in.

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