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Big Second Quarter Propels North Catholic Over Warren in PIAA 4A First Round

North Catholic's Max Hurray and Warren's Brady Berdine battle for a loose ball with Warren's Tommy Nyquist in pursuit. Photo by Mark Evans.

WARREN, Pa. – A 12-2 second-quarter run helped give North Catholic a lead that was too much to overcome as the Trojans topped Warren, 67-58, in the first round of the PIAA Class 4A Tournament.

The run contributed to North Catholic (17-9) outscoring Warren (20-6), 18-9, in the second to take a 34-25 lead into the half.

“In the second quarter I thought they were able to get a working margin,” Warren coach Jeff Berdine said. “I didn’t think that we were able to score the ball really well in the second quarter.”

See Berdine’s full interview:

Warren wasn’t able to score in the early going as North Catholic jumped out to a 6-0 lead. Braylon Barnes got the Dragons on the board with a putback, then scored four more to cut the lead to 8-6. Barnes’ points were part of a 14-4 run that gave Warren its first, and only, lead of the game, 14-10, with two minutes to play in the first.


That was the kind of first-quarter run that had lifted Warren to big leads through the District 10 tournament. But North Catholic was prepared to rally.

“Watching the film, and knowing how fast they like to play, I didn’t think really today would be one of those days where any lead was safe,” Berdine said.

The Trojans answered back with a 6-0 run to reclaim the lead, but Logan Crissy hit a pair of free throws with 12 seconds left to send the teams into the second quarter tied at 16-16.

North Catholic appeared ready to salt the game away early in the third quarter. Eli Stofko knocked down a three to push the Trojans’ lead to 41-27 less than a minute into the second half.

Brady Berdine completed a 3-point play 20 seconds later to slow the Trojans’ momentum, but North Catholic did enough through the rest of the quarter to take a 53-41 lead into the fourth.


Crissy hit a 3-pointer less than a minute into the fourth quarter to get the deficit back to single digits, and Barnes’ triple cut the lead to seven, 60-53, with 4:45 to play.

Again, the Trojans found an answer and got the lead back to nine with 2:36 to play.

“Every time we’d kind of cut into (the lead), get it down to seven or so, we’d have a turnover or they’d make a big shot,” Jeff Berdine said.

Jason Fredericks hit a 3-pointer, then Max Hurray stole the inbounds pass and made a layup with 47 seconds left to give the Trojans a 67-56 advantage.

Warren kept battling as Berdine turned a steal into a layup with 25 seconds left, but North Catholic was able to bleed the clock and come away with the win.

Murray led the Trojans with 21 points and Owen Maddalon had 13 points.

Berdine led all scorers with 22 points, while Barnes had 15 points, and Crissy had nine points.

North Catholic will take on Avonworth, a 65-43 winner over Punxsutawney, in the second round on Tuesday at a time and location to be announced.


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