Shenango girls basketball team rolls past New Brig
Shenango (53) Vs. New Brighton (30)
Jan 30, 2017
The winning streak is at four in a row for the Shenango High girls basketball team.
The Lady Wildcats breezed to a 53-30 WPIAL Section 1-2A home win over New Brighton on Monday night to extend their winning streak and bolster their playoff hopes.
“We’re finally healthy and I think we’re starting to play some really good basketball,” Shenango coach Jason Rankin said.
The Lady Wildcats (6-5 section, 8-10 overall) are tied for third place with Burgettstown (6-5, 12-6). The teams split the season and they have three league games remaining apiece. Four teams plus ties that can’t be broken qualify for the WPIAL playoffs.
Shenango jumped out to a 24-11 lead on the Lady Lions (1-10, 2-15) at the half and never looked back.
Junior Madison Harden scored 18 points to lead the way for the Lady Wildcats in the rout, while senior Jacqui Baker followed with 16. Harden and Baker are the only upperclassmen on a Shenango team that seems to be rounding into form.
“They’re leaders for us,” Rankin said. “You know, we’re a pretty young team and we struggled a bit out of the gate. But those two are leaders and they set an example and I think our other girls are starting to catch on.”
Following the loss of four seniors to graduation, Shenango started the year 4-10 and was dealing with key injuries to Baker and starting guard Chaslin Hoover.
Since the return of each, however, the Lady Wildcats have played like one of the top teams in the section and have surged into a playoff spot.
“We just needed to settle our girls down a bit,” Rankin said. “These younger girls can play. But we don’t have a JV program so some of them are coming right up from junior high and I think the game was a little too quick for them at the beginning of the year.”
Hoover, a sophomore, chipped in with eight points for the hosts.
“We’ve got to keep our heads down and play within ourselves,” Rankin said. “Right now we’re not trying to do too much and we’re doing the little things well. We have to continue to do that.”