While section honors were not on the line, this past Friday's girls basketball game between Quigley Catholic and Vincentian Academy had to be considered a measuring stick for both Catholic school programs. Both the Spartans and the Royals lead their respective groupings. At 10-0, Quigley has a three-game lead in Section 1-A over Cornell and Union, which share second-place honors with 7-3 records with just two section games remaining for all teams.
Vincentian also has two section games remaining with a 10-0 Section 2-A record and an overall standard of 19-0 that has earned the Royals the No. 1 position in the Post-Gazette's Class A girls basketball rankings.
Despite that, however, the Royals have a huge game for section pride looming on Thursday night when they host North Catholic at Marshall Middle School. In the first game between the two teams, the Royals eked out a 65-64 victory on a last-second basket by sophomore standout Brenna Wise. A reversal in the Royals' fortunes on Thursday would mean they would share the section title with North Catholic, which is what happened a year ago.
And so, there was a sense of intrigue that preceded Friday's game between the Spartans and the Royals. But there was no mystery about the outcome as the Royals took a 21-point halftime lead en route to a 73-45 victory.
Quigley Catholic's top scorer was Morgan Dillon, who had 12 points. Wise and Abbey Bartoszewicz outscored the Spartans with a combined 46 points, with Wise's 30 points leading the way. Quigley will again qualify for the WPIAL tournament as Section 1-A champion as the Spartans cannot be caught by any of their section rivals. But they certainly will have their work cut out for them if another matchup with the Royals takes place in the WPIAL Class A girls basketball playoffs.