Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Surges Make the Difference Undefeated Red Hurricanes Run off to Semis New Csatle 80, Erie Cathedral Prep 70

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Surges Make the Difference Undefeated Red Hurricanes Run off to Semis New Csatle 80, Erie Cathedral Prep 70

Article excerpt

EDINBORO, Pa. -- New Castle's basketball team is eagerly trying to leave its mark as being perhaps the best to come out of the WPIAL in at least a decade.

Still, the team's coach chose to use an analogy from another sport when discussing one of the things his players do best.

"If we were running backs in football, we wouldn't be 3 yards and a cloud of dust," Ralph Blundo said.

"We might have some empty possessions here and there, but, eventually, we'll break a big one."

New Castle broke two big ones Saturday, and it was the difference for the Red Hurricanes in an 80-70 win against Erie Cathedral Prep in a PIAA Class AAAA quarterfinal before an overflow crowd of more than 3,000 at Edinboro University's McComb Fieldhouse.

New Castle (28-0), the only undefeated boys team in the PIAA, advanced to the semifinals for the first time since 2002.

The Red Hurricanes will play District 1 runner-up Lower Merion (26-3) Tuesday. Lower Merion edged Harrisburg, 63-62, in another quarterfinal.

Cathedral Prep (23-3) outscored New Castle in three of four quarters, but it was what the Red Hurricanes did in the other quarter that allowed them to continue their season.

New Castle trailed, 22-20, after the first quarter, but the Red Hurricanes made the second quarter their own private playground, outscoring Cathedral Prep, 28-12, on their way to a 48-34 halftime lead.

This New Castle team has become known for their ability to go on quick spurts to separate themselves from their opponents, and they used two of them in the second quarter to pull away from Cathedral Prep. New Castle surrendered the first two points to fall behind by four, but went on a 10-0 run in just 1:13 to go ahead, 30-24.

The Red Hurricanes later led, 38-32, but finished the half on a 10-2 run in 1:51 with Brandon Domenick's 3-pointer at the buzzer being the exclamation point. …

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