Top-ranked Tigers Survive Shaler Rally, 53-46
North Allegheny staved off a fourth quarter rally by the Shaler Titans and hung on for its 16th straight win, defeating the Titans, 53-46, on Monday night in a Section 3-AAAA contest. The Lady Tigers constructed a 47-31 lead in the final period before Shaler went on a 14-2 run to trim the NA advantage to four points with 1:05 to play, 49-45. Sophomore Taylor Lake scored three of NA’s next four points and Shaler’s shooting went cold in the final minute as the Lady Tigers held off the Titans for the win.
In the first quarter, Quinn Page and C.J. Harris dropped in a pair of three-pointers to lift the Titans to an early 6-2 lead. Unfazed, North Allegheny rolled off a 13-2 run to take a 15-8 lead into the second quarter. By the midway point of the second, the Lady Tigers were in front 25-10 and maintained a double a digit lead for most of the game. Spearheading North Allegheny’s effort was sophomore guard Abby Gonzales who scored a team-high 15 points and added five assists, four rebounds and three steals. For her overall effort, Gonzales was named the Wright Automotive Player of the Game.
In their previous meeting, it took overtime for North Allegheny to knock off then-unbeaten Shaler on January 9. In the rematch, the Tigers were rolling along and stretched their lead to 16 points on a Taylor Brennan jumper with 5:37 remaining in the game. Brennan finished the night with 11 points and six rebounds.
However, before North Allegheny could run away from the Titans, junior Andi Lydon sparked a 14-2 run for Shaler with a three-pointer following the Brennan score. The 6-2 forward scored nine of Shaler’s 14 points on the run and finished strong with 15 points despite a quiet first half. Aiding the Titans cause, the Tigers missed six consecutive free-throws down the stretch, three of which came on one-and-one attempts, helping Shaler inch its way back into the game. While the Titans pulled to within four, they could come no closer as North Allegheny stays perfect in section play.
Contributing to North Allegheny’s win was junior Devvin LaBarge who poured in 10 points and was 3 of 3 from beyond the arc. On the inside, Lake scored seven points and pulled down 10 boards. For Shaler, Quinn netted 13 points and six rebounds.
North Allegheny improves to 17-1 overall and 11-0 in Section 3. Shaler falls to 14-5 and 7-4 in section play. The Titans remain in second place in the section thanks to Oakland Catholic’s upset win over Seneca Valley. The Lady Tigers will round out their section schedule with a visit to North Hills on Thursday night. The Titans host Pine-Richland on Thursday.
Girls Basketball vs. Shaler, 2-3-14
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