At 11-0, the Charleroi girls basketball team is tied with Vincentian Academy (Class A) for the best record in the WPIAL.
* According to Trinity football coach Ed Dalton, boys basketball coach Joe Dunn is going for career victory No. 300 tonight against McGuffey. I'll check the totals later today when I get to the office.
Dunn, one of the WPIAL's good guys and one of my favorite coaches to watch in-game, will probably be happier if the Hillers just beat McGuffey to pick up their first section win.
And anyone else notice Josh Valentic is averaging almost 32 points per game?
* Wash High won't be at full strength tonight at home against South Fayette in what I consider the area's premier basketball rivalry. Julien Anderson is out with an ankle injury and the flu bug has hit the team, leaving the status of Eric Ellis uncertain.
* Drew Denham is an occasional contributor here to The Varsity Letters and a former multi-sport standout at Mapletown before moving on to an athletic career at Waynesburg University.
Denham sent an e-mail to myself and Chris Dugan, the Observer-Reporter sports editor, last week that brought life to a wild fact.
Mapletown varsity sports is 0-for the 2010-11 school year.
Football, girls volleyball, boys basketball and girls basketball are all winless.
I immediately thought two things when Denham sent the e-mail: 1. This provides further proof that more school mergers should take place, and 2. It's a credit to the student-athletes and coaches at Mapletown who continue to work hard despite getting no reward in the win total.
* Mapletown isn't the only boys teams struggling in Section 3-A.
Avella, the preseason favorite to win the section, is 4-6 overall. That stands as the best won-loss record in the section.
Carmichaels is 3-6. Bentworth and Jefferson-Morgan are each 1-8. West Greene is 0-9 and Mapletown is 0-10. That's a combined record of 9-47.
Avella, Carmichaels and Bentworth all play challenging non-section schedules and the guess here is those three teams will be the top three teams by the end of the section season. Still, it's difficult to imagine a scenario where any team from the section gets a decent seed in the postseason.
* The surprise of the WPIAL boys basketball season? Ringgold has to be a leading candidate.
The Rams are 7-1 overall and, at 3-0, sit alone atop Section 5-AAA, a half-game ahead of Montour and South Fayette. Clearly, the drop in classification has helped the Rams but Section 5 is no pushover.
With Montour, South Fayette, Washington and Trinity, it could be argues that Section 5 featured four of the top teams in the classification. Ringgold has already beat Trinity and Washington at home, making the Rams a significant factor in the postseason picture.
Ringgold plays three of its next four section games on the road and the lone home game is against Montour. It could prove to be a vital stretch of the season for a team that has struggled for several years prior.
* Speaking of improvement, the Canon-McMillan girls are playing its best basketball since a group of underclassmen that included Natasha Williams, Brittany Taylor and Cameron Jones were all healthy and playing.
The Big Macs are 5-4 overall but lost their section opener at Baldwin Thursday night. The 56-47 loss against a Baldwin team that looks like the best in the classification at this point of the season was impressive for a couple reasons.
First, it's a game where Canon-McMillan would not have been competitive the past couple years. Second, Emily Hansen scored 20 points despite drawing the defense her way. Third, C-M is getting more from its other players, particularly Taylor Petras.