Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Senior Has Vital Role in 'Hounds' Success

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Senior Has Vital Role in 'Hounds' Success

Article excerpt

There were many times this season when longtime coach Joe Salvino has reached out to Noah Rullo.

As a senior member of Monessen's boys basketball team, Rullo welcomed his role as Salvino's "go-to" veteran player regarding issues both on an off the court.

"Noah has been the guy I've relied on," Salvino said. "Whether it's getting something across to the team on the court or if we have to change practice, Noah is the guy I go to.

"For a coach to have someone like that on their team means a lot. He makes sure everyone is on board with what we need to get across to the team. They listen to Noah and understand he's our captain."

A 5-foot-9 guard, Rullo was well prepared for his new job entering his senior season.

"When we were playing in our summer league, I knew I was going to be a captain and had to be the guy who people went to for advice," Rullo said. "I accepted that role and wanted to live up to it this season."

One week after winning a WPIAL Class A championship, Monessen (21-6) cruised past Venango Catholic, 76-41, in opening-round action of the PIAA Class A tournament. Venango Catholic, located in Oil City, was the fourth-place team out of District 9.

The Greyhounds (22-6) are riding an 11-game winning streak and outscoring opponents by an average of 76.6-49.9 after defeating District 6 runner-up Portage Area, 69-49, in the second round Tuesday at Hempfield Area High School.

Lavalle Rush poured in 27 points to lead the Greyhounds. Monessen fell behind, 10-0, early but used a big second quarter -- outscoring Portage, 22-6 -- to take control.

"We've been playing very well, but we still haven't played to our true potential," said Rullo, who also plays football and baseball at Monessen. "We practiced very hard this season to get where we are. …

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