GUESS WHAT? DISTRICT 9 CAN PLAY SOME HOOPS
By Chris Rossetti
CLARION – Extra, extra, read all about it! District 9 can play a little basketball.
What’s that you say? You haven’t heard the news?
Well let me break it to all of you who have been sleeping over the last few years. District 9 might be a lot of country folks and non-athletic looking basketball players, but those boys can play a little bit of hoops.
With DuBois Central Catholic’s 51-50 win over perennial powerhouse and heavy favorite Kennedy Catholic in the PIAA Class A boys’ semifinals Tuesday night, District 9 has now put a Class A boys’ team in the PIAA championship game in two straight years. And some of you might remember, District 9 is the defending champion in the “A” bracket with Elk County Catholic winning that title last year. And District 9 has placed in the top four in Class A in three of the past four years. Not only that, but since the 2004 season in Class A D9 has had two finalist, three semifinalists and six quarterfinalists.
That talent is starting to show up at small-time college as while including at Penn State-DuBois, a four-year program playing in the Pennsylvania State University’s Athletic Conference (PSUAC), which won the PSUAC title with an 85-82 two overtime win over Penn State-Abington March 10 capping a 24-7 season that also saw the Nittany Lions finish second at the United State Collegiate Athletic Association National Champion. Nine of PSU-DuBois’ 11 players including all five starters were District 9 graduates.
“This win means a lot for District 9,” DCC head coach Mike Nesbit said. “This has been building. You can see this building over the last six years. Two or three teams going into the quarterfinals or semifinals. The quality of basketball just keeps getting better and better and better. My eighth graders play all the time. These kids are playing basketball all the time now. They are really more dedicated to it than they have been in the past.”