Balance, experience pay off for Kennedy Catholic
balance too much
By MICHAEL BULLOCK
While the PIAA may have adjusted a few things and added several classifications to its basketball championships, that didn’t stop an experienced Kennedy Catholic squad from authoring a repeat.
Flashing all sorts of balance and popping four players into double figures, Kennedy Catholic defeated Girard College of Philadelphia 73-56 in the PIAA Class 1A boys championship Thursday at Giant Center.
The state championship was the second in a row for Rick Mancino’s Golden Eagles (26-2) — the Hermitage team claimed the Class A title in 2016 — and the eighth overall for the school that sits near the Pennsylvania-Ohio boundary.
Marcin Wiszomirsky cranked out a double-double (19 points/13 rebounds), Maceo Austin collected 16 points, Drew Magestro finished with 15 points and Mohamed Konate banked 11 for the District 10 champions.
Austin, a 6-5 sophomore who is receiving NCAA Division I interest, also grabbed nine rebounds and dished out six assists. Magestro, a 6-3 senior headed for Pitt-Johnstown, also doled out a half-dozen assists for Mancino’s Eagles.
An 8-0 spurt at the close of the first fueled by a pair of Austin treys had Kennedy up 16-9 after eight minutes. A 10-4 burst to open the second quarter really opened it up.
Although Girard College was able to draw within six points several times in the third quarter, a Cavaliers group (24-9) without a single senior on its 10-man roster could not climb any closer against Mancino’s club.
Daiquan Copeland poured in 26 and snared eight rebounds for Girard College (24-9), the District 1 champions. Clyde Jones’ outfit also picked up 16 points from Mikael Jones.