The PIAA boys’ basketball tournament will continue Wednesday with Class 6A, 3A, and 2A second-round contests.
The action is highlighted by a pair of top-10 showdowns in 6A: Abington, ranked No. 2 in Southeastern Pennsylvania by the Inquirer, vs. No. 8 St. Joseph’s Prep; and No. 5 Roman Catholic vs. No. 3 Plymouth Whitemarsh. Roman has won state crowns in two of the last three seasons.
Here is a closer look at the games involving local squads, along with our predictions.
Abington vs. St. Joseph’s Prep, at Archbishop Ryan, 7 p.m. Abington is especially hungry to make it to Hershey after losing in the first round of states last season and in 2015. St. Joseph’s Prep’s best run in the tourney was in 2013, when Speedy Morris’ squad reached the semifinals before losing to Chester.
The Ghosts are spurred by 6-foot-7 forward Eric Dixon, 6-6 wing Lucas Monroe, and guard Robbie Heath. The Hawks counter with 6-7 center Ed Croswell and guards Darius Kinnel and Kyle Thompson.
Pick: Abington, 59-54.
Lincoln vs. Hempfield, at Pottstown, 7:30 p.m. Hempfield is led by 6-5 forward Ryan Moffatt and guard Anthony Alston. Moffatt shot 21 for 24 from the line en route to 29 points as the Black Knights ousted Jhamir Brickus and Coatesville, 66-53, in the first round.
Pick: Lincoln, 72-65.
Lower Merion vs. Neshaminy, at Council Rock South, 7:30 p.m. Lower Merion’s attack centers around savvy point guard Steve Payne, wing Jack Forrest, small forward Darryl Taylor, and guard Harrrison Klevan. Forrest and Klevan are three-point threats.
Neshaminy’s spark plug is 6-4 senior guard Chris Arcidiacono (25.5 ppg.). He went 13 for 14 from the stripe on the way to 27 points in a 62-47, first-round win over East Stroudsburg South.
Pick: Lower Merion, 64-53.
Reading vs. Central Bucks West, at Bethlehem Liberty, 7:30 p.m. Behind senior mainstays Collin MacAdams, Shane McCusker and Jake Reichwein, C.B. West looks to take down the defending state champs.
Reading is paced by guards Wesley Butler (15.8 ppg.), Larry Wingo (10.5), Xavier Starks, Hector Dixon, and 6-4 center Ricki Lopez.
Pick: Reading, 68-57.
Roman Catholic vs. Plymouth Whitemarsh, at Bensalem, 7 p.m. With Roman’s potent offense and PW’s tenacious defense, this could be a major slugfest.
The Cahillites are powered by 6-6 dynamo Seth Lundy, floor general Lynn Greer, and high-leaping wings Hakim Hart and Allen Betrand.
The Colonials, who rattle foes with their full-court press, are keyed by 7-2 center Naheem McLeod, twins Ahmin and Ahmad Williams, and fellow guard Ish Horn. The team’s fifth starter, 6-4 forward Alan Glover, is expected to sit out after suffering a concussion in the fourth quarter of Saturday’s 71-47 defeat of Dallastown.
Pick: PW, 67-65.
Neumann-Goretti vs. Wyoming Seminary, at Bethlehem Freedom, 7:30 p.m. Seminary, which is making its first state appearance since 1992, has a strong one-two punch in 6-2 forward Dimitri Gnall (16.8 ppg.) and guard Jeremy Callahan (10.2). N-G guard Christian Ings averages 14.7 points.
Pick: N-G, 78-59.
Bishop McDevitt vs. Notre Dame-Green Pond, at Council Rock South, 6 p.m. Notre Dame is fueled by juniors Filippo Baldo, Zach DeFoe, Billy Cornish, and Jaden Cunningham.
Pick: McDevitt, 48-47.
Valley Forge Military Academy vs. Loyalsock, at Milton Hershey, 7:30 p.m. Junior guard Gerald Ross hit a buzzer-beating jumper to lift Loyalsock to a 62-60 win over Holy Redeemer in the opening round. Valley Forge guard Arion Lewis averages 21.6 points.
Pick: Valley Forge, 59-55.
Dobbins vs. Trinity, at Governor Mifflin Intermediate School, 7:30 p.m. Trinity’s Sean Good, a 6-11 senior and Lafayette recruit, has totaled more than 1,000 points, 1,000 rebounds, and 500 blocks in his career.
Pick: Trinity, 67-57
Math, Civics & Sciences vs. Dock Mennonite, at Harriton, 6 p.m. MC&S is paced by guards Jihad “Squid” Watson (15 ppg.), Kwahzere Ransom, and Semaj Mills; Dock’s backcourt features Miz Nyagwegwe and Jackson Scialanca (78 treys).
Pick: MC&S, 72-53.
Constitution vs. Bishop Guilfoyle, at Cumberland Valley, 7:30 p.m. Guilfoyle’s Luke Ruggery, a 5-10 junior point guard and a 1,000-point career scorer, has committed to St. Francis (Pa.).
Pick: Constitution, 68-49.