Neshannock's boys season comes to end with loss to
Neshannock (54) Vs. Quaker Valley (69)
Feb 22, 2016
By Ron Poniewasz Jr.
New Castle News

DORMONT — The Neshannock High boys basketball team had two rough quarters Monday night.

That was enough to seal the Lancers' fate.

Neshannock scored just four points in each of the second and fourth quarters in dropping a 69-54 WPIAL Class AA play-in game to Quaker Valley at Keystone Oaks High School. The loss ended the Lancers' season at 17-7.

Neshannock led 28-16 after one quarter and was up 50-46 heading to the fourth.

“Some of our shot selection wasn’t good," Lancers coach John Corey said in particular about the fourth quarter. "We came out and shot the ball really well (early in the game) and our shot selection early in that fourth quarter was just uncharacteristically poor."

Neshannock went cold to open the fourth quarter as the Quakers (20-5) went on a 13-0 run to build a lead with just 2:20 to go.

"When we saw them on tape and saw how well they shoot, we knew it would be a difficult matchup," Quaker Valley coach Mike Mastroianni said. "We made some adjustments and put Amos (Luptak) on (Ethan) Moose and (Jason) Swope, trying to get some better matchup.

"Mitch came in and did a great job defensively for us. He creates havoc and helped us out a lot."

The Lancers had an 8-2 edge in fouls in the second half, but that quickly evaporated and ended 16-8. That was a key in Quaker Valley opening up the lead in the final frame.

"Fouls were 8 to 2 and Mike started complaining about the officiating and I think they went 14 straight fouls on us," Corey said. "How that’s done at this level of basketball is amazing to me.

"We had some moments where we didn’t do the right thing and I expect those fouls to be made."

The game got out of control with a minute left, when Neshannock was whistled for an intentional foul and then a technical. That pushed the lead from 61-52 to 63-52 and signaled the end of the Lancers' hopes.

Neshannock, which lost a 63-61 heartbreaker to section foe Lincoln Park in the quarterfinals Saturday, started the game strong. The Lancers raced to a 28-16 buffer after one stanza, draining six of their 11 3-pointers in that period.

"We shot the ball really well coming out of the gate," Corey said. "That got us off to a fast start. We knew they were a good team and we knew they were going to come back.

"I wouldn’t say that, at any point, we got comfortable because we didn’t. We kept battling, but it’s tough to see a lead like that evaporate.

The hard-fought loss to the Leopards on Saturday didn't affect Neshannock according to Corey.

"I was unbelievably proud of our effort against Lincoln Park. I was worried Sunday where our heads would be, but our guys came in and were upbeat and excited about this opportunity. I don’t think there was any negative carryover. We came out in the first quarter and got up 12. We were ready to go, it took us some time defensively to adjust to them. By the time we did, they dominated the game."

Swope netted 15 of his game-high 27 tallies in the first quarter. He was 10 of 18 from the field and pulled down a team-high 11 rebounds.

"Jason played a spectacular game," Corey said. "Down the stretch he really evolved into a tough player for us. He’s the type of guy that, when I’m talking, he's locked in and listening to every single word. To see him play as well as he has down the stretch, despite the disappointment now, it’s good to see."

Jake Rylott chipped in 13 markers for the Lancers.

Turnovers proved costly in the second stanza for Neshannock. The Lancers turned the ball over nine times in the period, allowing the Quakers to get back in the game and forge a 34-32 halftime lead.

"We called two timeouts during that stretch to try and slow it down, but it seemed like it was inevitable," Corey said. "We scored four points in the second and fourth quarter. You can’t win a regular-season game doing that, let alone a game this time of year. It’s unfortunate for our guys."

Neshannock finished with just 13 total turnovers, but the inability to take care of the ball in the second period proved costly.

The Lancers lose seven players to graduation, including Rylott, Frank
Fraschetti, Swope, Mark Munnell, Richie Serignese, Ethan Moose and Mike Nuzzo.

“I'm proud of our accomplishments, it was a very unselfish group," Corey said. "Watching our team work on the floor throughout the season was tremendous. Just a good group of guys that I’ll miss and this program will miss greatly."

The Quakers move on to meet Washington on Thursday in a play-in game.

Nightly Roundup
Feb 22, 2016 Nightly Roundups
Game Scoreboard
Neshannock 28 4 18 4 0 54
Quaker Valley 16 18 12 23 0 69
Box Scores
Coletrane Washington 4 2-2 13
Amos Luptak 5 5-9 17
Wolfie Moser 3 2-2 8
Colin Hill 4 1-2 9
Ricky Guss 4 4-6 12
Mitch Luton 3 4-5 10
Totals: 23 18-26 69

Jake Rylott 4 0-0 10
Frank Fraschetti 2 0-0 6
Ethan Moose 2 0-1 4
Jason Swope 10 1-2 27
Richie Serignese 1 0-0 3
Ean Oprean 1 0-0 2
Brandon Scheidemantle 0 2-2 2
Mike Nuzzo 0 0-0 0
Mark Munnell 0 0-0 0
Chis Scott 0 0-0 0
Mark Slinn 0 0-0 0
Totals: 20 3-5 54

QUAKER VALLEY 16 18 12 23 — 69
NESHANNOCK 28 4 18 4 — 54

3-point goals — Quaker Valley 8 (Luptak 5, Washington 3), Neshannock 11 (Swope 6, Fraschetti 2, Rylott 2, Serignese 1).
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