Seneca Valley pulls away for win over New Castle
New Castle (33) Vs. Seneca Valley (55)
Dec 14, 2007

HARMONY — The New Castle High boys basketball team is in a consistent pattern.

Unfortunately for the Red Hurricane, it’s not a good one.

New Castle has rotated wins and losses for the last five games and last night Seneca Valley posted a 55-33 victory in a WPIAL Section 3-AAAA contest.

“They needed it and it was a road game for us,” ’Canes coach Mark Stanley said. “We didn’t set the tone early and it cost us.”

New Castle (1-2 section, 3-4 overall), still seeking consecutive wins for the first time this season, was coming off a 77-63 decision over Shaler on Tuesday.

Suddenly, the balance of power in the series seems to have shifted to the Raiders’ side. Last year, Seneca Valley swept New Castle for the first time in 15 years and are in position for another.

“I don’t know? The intimidation factor is gone?,” fourth-year Raiders coach Vic Giannotta said. “Personally, I’ve never been intimidated by anyone or any thing.”

The win was big for the Raiders (1-2, 5-2), as they avoided going 0-3 and digging a big early hole in section play.

New Castle held just one lead at 2-1 on a bucket by Tyrone Steals.

However, the Raiders closed the quarter on a 14-5 run to take command at 15-7.

Mike Andrews, the ’Canes’ inside force averaging nearly 11 points a game, was limited to just two third-quarter free throws. His slow start helped Seneca Valley get started.

“(Ryan) Turner did a nice job on Andrews,” Giannotta said. “That got us going.

“I kind of expected this type of game. I’ve know Mark (Stanley) for a long time. The way we play 55 points is going to be what it takes to win a game.”

The ’Canes closed to within 18-14, but Ryan Turner made a pair of foul shots and split a pair of technical freebies with 5:22 to go. Seneca Valley kept possession and Dan Rohm buried a 3-pointer seven seconds later for a 24-14 advantage.

“You have to overcome stuff like that,” Stanley said. “It’s adversity and you have to put it behind and overcome them; it’s our own fault.

“Good teams overcome things like that. The worst part is they got a 3-pointer, too.”

The Raiders were never seriously threatened in the second half. New Castle got within 45-33 with 5:43 to play, but would not score the rest of the way.

Steals, New Castle’s leading scorer at 13.8 points a game, was held to just nine markers. He sat the last 14:27 of the game after receiving a technical foul.

“You have to game plan around stopping Steals; Tyrone is a good player,” Giannotta said.

Tonio Fulena paced the ’Canes with a career high 11 points on 4-of-8 shooting.

“Fulena plays hard all the time. I never have fault with Tonio Fulena,” Stanley said.

C.J. Brown led all scorers with 18 markers for the Raiders, 13 of which came in the first half.

“Brown was tremendous tonight,” Giannotta said. “He gets the basketball and does good things with it. He makes great decisions and he stepped up and made big shots.”

New Castle will try and bounce back at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday when section rival Pine-Richland invades the Ne-Ca-Hi Field House.
Nightly Roundup
Game Scoreboard
New Castle 7 11 8 7 0 33
Seneca Valley 15 18 9 13 0 55
Box Scores
Field Goals Attempted Foul Shots Made Foul Shots Three Points Total Points Fouls
New Castle
#10 Nick Colella242170
#11 Tyrone Steals421090
#4 Tonio Fulena4321110
#34 Mike Andrews022020
#5 Chris Richards120020
#13 Jajuan Jay100020
Seneca Valley
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