After a 6-0 start to this season, not many teams were hotter than Freedom going into Monday’s action.

By night’s end, though, Keystone Oaks had put the Bulldogs’ fire out while starting one of its own.

The Golden Eagles (6-2) withstood a furious second-half rally by visiting Freedom and held on for a 60-47 win, earning a bit of payback in the process for a season-ending defeat in the 2022 WPIAL Class 3A quarterfinals. The Bulldogs (6-1) had taken a 45-43 lead after trailing by 15 at halftime, but Keystone Oaks regained momentum and controlled play down the stretch to push its own winning streak to six games.

“Basketball is a game of runs,” Golden Eagles coach Ron Muszynski said. “They are a good team, and they were prepared in the second half. They changed up a couple things on us, made a run, and we responded back with a good little run of our own.”

Bailey Rieg had a team-high 25 points to lead Keystone Oaks, while Julz Mohrbacher led all players with 30 points for Freedom, which is in Class 2A this season.

“Our girls really remember last year’s loss in the playoffs to them,” Muszynski said. “They are so happy. They work so hard, and last year, we had a lot of bad breaks go our way, and we pretty much have our same team back from last year.

“We started a little slow, but we’re catching our groove.”

Mars girls edge Hampton

Vita Vargo was the star of the show for the Mars Planets (5-1, 1-0) in a dramatic 56-55 road win, scoring a team-high 15 points and making a go-ahead basket late in the fourth quarter to stun the Hampton crowd. Meghan Murray led all scorers with 18 points for the Talbots (5-2, 1-1).

Armstrong girls remain unbeaten

Kyla Fitzgerald scored a game-high 19 points for the River Hawks (6-0, 2-0), who kept their perfect record in tact with a 57-30 win against North Hills (4-3, 0-2). Olivia Waters led the Indians with 11 points.

Chartiers Valley girls clip Canon-Mac

Emma Reynolds scored 14 points and Ella Cupka finished with 13 to help the Colts (4-2, 1-0) pick up a 57-44 home win against Canon-McMillan (1-6, 0-2). Kelsey Wandera had a team-high 10 points for the Big Macs.

Mt. Lebanon girls blow past Bethel Park

Jenny Smith scored a game-high 17 points to help the defending WPIAL champion Blue Devils (4-2, 2-0) pick up a 57-39 win at the rival Black Hawks (0-6, 0-2).

Oakland Catholic soars past Connellsville

Halena Hill had 19 points and Alexa Washington chipped in 16, leading four players in double figures for the Eagles (5-2, 2-0) in a 96-23 win against the Falcons (2-5, 0-2).

North Catholic girls overpower Freeport

Alayna Rocco led all players with 22 points, while Dacia Lewandowski scored 11 and Anna Waskiewicz added 10 for the Trojanettes (5-2, 2-0) in a 66-28 win against the Yellowjackets (3-5, 1-1).

Seton LaSalle girls storm by Montour

Mallory Daly led three players in double figures for the Rebels (3-2, 0-0) with a game-high 21 points in a 53-41 home win. Raegan Kadlecik paced the Spartans (2-6, 1-1) with 16 points.

Wade carries Clairton girls again

Already emerging as a leading candidate to win this year’s WPIAL girls scoring title, Iyanna Wade kept up her blistering pace with a 36-point effort in a 50-9 win for the Bears (2-1, 1-0) against Ellis School (2-4, 0-2).

Angela Jones of Ellis School, left, and Clairton’s Kevionna Jones battle for the ball Monday night in host Clairton’s 50-9 victory. (Steve Mellon/Pittsburgh Union Progress)

Rochester girls rout Sewickley Academy

Aleaya Mercier scored a game-high 21 points to help Rochester (1-5, 1-1) pick up its first victory of the season with a 55-15 win against Sewickley Academy (2-3, 0-1).

Three stars

*** — Alex VanSickle did everything he could for Waynesburg (2-6, 0-1) in a 77-67 loss to California (2-3, 0-0), knocking down six 3-pointers and finishing with 30 points for the Raiders.

** — Tiffany Zelmore could have changed her name to “Tiffany Scoremore” with the way she played Monday night. Zelmore poured in 35 points for Mount Pleasant (5-1, 0-0) to lead the Vikings to a nail-biting 61-59 win at McGuffey (5-2, 0-0).

* — Gemma Walker was automatic for Peters Township, going 20 for 20 from the free-throw line and scoring a game-high 26 points for the Indians (6-1, 2-0) in a 60-49 win against Baldwin (3-4, 0-2).

Steve is a sports writer at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, but he's currently on strike. Email him at

Steve Rotstein

Steve is a sports writer at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, but he's currently on strike. Email him at