Anderson, ’Canes slam door on Seneca Valley
New Castle (79) Vs. Seneca Valley (45)
Jan 05, 2013
By Andrew Petyak
New Castle News

HARMONY — On the scoresheet, it went down as two points.

To Shawn Anderson, it served as a message to all of Class AAAA.

A monster dunk with a minute to play capped a 31-point effort, as the New Castle High boys basketball team rolled in a Section 3-AAAA game at Seneca Valley, 79-45.

“This is the kind of environment we’ve been waiting for. We’ve been hearing about Quad-A this, Quad-A that, we were just waiting for our moment,” the Red Hurricane forward said. “We wanted to come out and show we could play with the best of the best. As the captain, I feel like I need to set the tone every night. My dad and my uncle have been all over me. They’ve missed all my dunks this year. When you get a chance, you got to just put it down. That one was for them.

“My teammates kept giving me the ball, Brandon Domenick and Anthony Richards started hitting threes and it just started to snowball. It just kept getting better and better as the game went on.”

New Castle, ranked No. 1 in the WPIAL in Class AAAA by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, moved up from Class AAA this season. Having already gone through Pine Richland, Butler and North Hills, the hostile confines of Seneca Valley was the next Section 3 challenge for the undefeated squad.

The ’Canes (4-0 section, 10-0 overall) stormed out of the gate, going on a 17-2 run to start the contest. The frame was highlighted by a quick-passing perimeter game that opened up Richards and Anthony for wide open 3-pointers. Richards scored all eight of his points in the quarter, with two from 3-point land. Anthony tallied two 3-pointers for six points.

“The energy was good and we shot well. That combination always has worked for us,” New Castle coach Ralph Blundo said. “We were playing hard and making shots. It was important because we were playing in a hostile environment and a packed house. To take the crowd out of it early was a good thing.”

The second quarter belonged to Anderson. He racked up 14 of his 31 points in the quarter and played a physical offensive game with teammate Malik Hooker inside. Hooker, who registered 20 total points, impressed with an excellent individual effort in the quarter, slam dunking a loose ball. New Castle led 41-21 at halftime.

“Malik’s arms are so long, same thing with Shawn. They go get the ball,” Blundo said. “We played well. If you come down to Seneca Valley and you win by that much, you played well.”

In the third quarter, the ’Canes struggled to find a rhythm. A hard press by the Raiders limited New Castle to nine points. Lack of energy to start the second half has been a theme for the team all season. Seneca Valley (2-2, 6-3) outscored New Castle 16-9 in the quarter.

“That’s on me. We have to be better out of halftime,” Blundo said. “To be honest, we haven’t been great out of the half all year. It was quite the opposite of last year. We rebounded well and played a really good fourth quarter, but we have to be better in the third.”

With the lead cut to 50-37, the Raiders and their fans could feel momentum swing back to their side. Facing its first real adversity of the night, New Castle responded, hanging 29 points on the Raiders with Anderson’s dunk being the proverbial cherry on top.

“I was a little upset about our third quarter, but you learn to play through it,” Anderson said. “In the third quarter, we’ve been down compared to last year. We’ve been trying to figure out what’s going on. Our energy is just low.”

Anderson, a Navy recruit, shot 13 of 15 from the field for the game, with three steals and eight rebounds.

“He was Shawn Anderson. He was very efficient in what he was doing,” Blundo said. “He was strong with the basketball. He was finishing layups and making threes. He just had an all-around basketball game. We’ve come to expect that from Shawn. I’m super proud of him.”

(Email: a_petyak@ncnewsonline.com)
Nightly Roundup
Game Scoreboard
Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 OT SCORE
New Castle 22 19 9 29 0 79
Seneca Valley 11 10 16 8 0 45
Box Scores
NEW CASTLE (79)
Brandon Domenick 2 0-0 6
Antonio Rudolph 2 0-0 5
Shawn Anderson 14 2-4 31
Anthony Richards 2 2-2 8
Malik Hooker 8 2-3 20
Jesse Salzano 2 0-0 4
Stew Allen 0 0-0 0
Drew Allen 1 0-0 2
Tyler Fitzpatrick 1 0-0 2
Micah Fulena 0 0-0 0
Jake McPhatter 0 1-2 1
Robert Natale 0 0-0 0
Totals: 32 7-11 79

SENECA VALLEY (45)
Matt Darby 1 0-0 2
Easton Bazzoli 3 2-2 8
T.J. Holl 2 0-0 4
R.J. McCaulley 6 0-0 14
Alex Snyder 2 2-3 6
Dakota Topf 2 0-0 4
Eric Woods 2 0-0 5
Kyle Snyder 0 0-0 0
Michael Smith 0 0-0 0
Zach Snyder 1 0-0 2
Bryce Schnaterly 0 0-0 0
Totals: 19 4-5 45

NEW CASTLE 22 19 9 29 — 79
SENECA VALLEY 11 10 16 8 — 45

3-point goals — New Castle 8 (Hooker 2, Richards 2, Domenick 2, Rudolph 1, Anderson 1); Seneca Valley 3 (McCaulley 2, Woods 1).
JV score: Seneca Valley 51, New Castle 45. High scorer: NC — Jake McPhatter 9.
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