Top 20



ed note: We are pleased to bring to you the MASN/ State Ratings. If you feel that we missed a team, please email us and will consider the info. This ranking includes all PA teams.





March 27, 2004

1. Philadelphia Simon Gratz (25-3) (Philadelphia Public League)

Won the Public League championship with a 71-53 win over Frankford. Public League MVP, Mark Tyndale led with 27pts and he was the leader all year long on this fine team. The Bulldogs won 21 of their last 22 games.

2. Philadelphia St. Joseph's Prep (27-4) (Philadelphia Catholic League)

The Hawks won the Catholic League title when they surprised season long #1 Cardinal Dougherty 84-61 in the finalJohn Griffin (27pts) and Chris Clark (25pts) combined to shoot 15-for-21 from the floor and 17-for-18 from the foul line in the title game. Then in the Alhambra Catholic Invitational Tournament, St. Joseph defeated Severn Archbishop Spalding, MD 75-65 in triple-overtime in the 1st round. They were beaten by Arlington Bishop O'Connell, VA 63-60 in the semifinals, but bounced back and finished third with a 72-58 win over Roman Catholic.

3. Philadelphia Cardinal Dougherty (26-6) (Philadelphia Catholic League)

Tim Smith led Dougherty with 16pts and DeSean White and Shane Clark scored 14pts apiece in the Catholic League championship loss to St. Joseph's Prep. In the Alhambra Catholic Invitational Tournament the Cardinals defeated DeMatha Catholic 71-68 and Roman Catholic 73-71 in overtime to reach the championship game where they were defeated by Arlington Bishop O'Connell 83-79. Kyle Lowry had a giant tournament scoring 24pts against DeMatha, 33pts, including the game winner at the buzzer against Roman and he had 42pts, 9rebs, 5 assists and 4 steals in the final loss to Bishop O'Connell. Kyle's three game total was 99 points.

4. Chester (23-6) (District 1 AAAA)

The District 1 champion, Clippers ended their season short as they were defeated by York 63-55 in the 1st round of states. But they had at least 5 academic causalities, when to their credit they set their standards higher that the PIAA standards. The loss was the first of the season to a PIAA team and the great season they had before this one loss must not and cannot be overlooked. Simply put they were the best PIAA team in the state. Also they did defeat #1 Simon Gratz 63-61, but lost to #3 Cardinal Dougherty 70-65 and to an early season Public League power, Southern. All other losses were to out of state powers, Mount Vernon, NY, Mt Zion Christian Academy, NC and Manhattan Rice.

5. Penn Hills (24-6) (District 7 AAAA)

The Indians hung around the bottom of the top 25 all year mostly because of early season losses to Hempfield Area, Mount Lebanon and New Castle. I had a couple of emails from western fans telling me to get them out but I didn't listen and man I'm thankful for that. After a 50-48 loss to Connellsville in the WPIAL quarterfinals, Penn Hills had to settle for 6th place in the district, because they do not have playbacks. Well it didn't matter, because after a first round state win over Pittsburgh Schenley, 69-58, Penn Hills got another shot at Connellsville and this time got the win in a 55-54 game. Then they dumped Pittsburgh Central Catholic 65-54 and defending AAAA state champ, State College 60-55 to reach Hershey. And the rest is history as they came away with a 57-48 victory over Parkland for their first ever state championship.

6.State College (26-3) (District 6 AAAA)

The Little Lions fell one game short of a certain AAAA state title repeat when they lost in the western finals to Penn Hills 60-55. It was their second loss to the Indians this year. Earlier they downed Mount Lebanon 57-37, McKeesport 56-49 and WPIAL champion, Chartiers Valley 64-50.

7. Erie McDowell (27-2) (District 10 AAAA)

Considered all year as one of the top 2 PIAA teams in the state along with Chester the Trojans were upset way to early. They rose to fame when they won the Hoop Group summer tournament defeating Philadelphia St. John Neumann in the championship game. They also beat some top Metro D.C., including Washington Catholic runnerup, Fairfax Paul VI teams to reach the final. McDowell, the District 10 champions defeated Upper St. Clair 62-45 in 1st round of states, but then were upset in 2nd round by Pittsburgh Central Catholic 65-61 in overtime. It was their only loss of the season to a Pennsylvania school. The other loss was to prep school power, Newark St. Benedict's, NJ 66-50.

8. Philadelphia St. John Neumann (19-8) (Philadelphia Catholic League)

Knocked out of Catholic League tournament in semifinals by #3 Cardinal Dougherty 66-62. Had won 7 consecutive games, before loss to Dougherty.

9. Philadelphia Roman Catholic (22-7) (Philadelphia Catholic League)

Cahillites ended season finishing 4th in the Alhambra Catholic Invitational Tournament where they defeated Baltimore Mount St. Joseph, MD 81-74, lost to Philadelphia Cardinal Dougherty 73-71 in overtime in the semifinals and then in the 3rd place game, they lost to Philadelphia St. Joseph's Prep 72-58. It was their 3rd loss of the year to St. Joseph's Prep.

10. Philadelphia Germantown Academy (24-8) (Philadelphia Inter-Academic League)

Ended season finishing 2nd in Inter-Ac League to Penn Charter. Penn Charter is not ranked because they use 5th players. GA lost three times to Penn Charter, including 86-75 in league tournament. Patriots should be ready for a big year in 04-05 as they will return juniors, Ryan Ayers 6-6, Brian Grimes 6-7, Kirk Jones 6-4 and 6-9 Soph Ed Ott.

11. Philadelphia Southern (20-5) (Philadelphia Public League)

Easily the 2nd best Philly Public School during the regular season to Simon Gratz, the Bulldogs were upset in the Round of 16 by University City 62-55 but the season they had cannot be overlooked.

12. Chartiers Valley (29-2) (District 7 AAAA)

Opened state tournament with 69-38 drubbing of Kiski Area and then knocked off George Junior Republic 60-54. Season ended with 64-50 loss to State College.

13. Sto-Rox (27-3) (District 7 AA)

AA state champs after a 62-53 victory over Trinity. Got to the final after avenging WPIAL semifinal loss to Beaver Falls with a 69-62 victory. Before the win over Beaver Falls they defeated Northwestern 72-57, WPIAL champion, Aliquippa, 58-53 and Freeport 66-44. It was their 3rd consecutive trip to the state final and the first win in that time.

14. Trinity (31-2) (District 3 AA)

Shamrocks were not tested at all in their run through the east bracket with wins over Warrior Run 81-41, Pottstown St. Pius X 79-60, Northwest 74-56 and Green Pond Notre Dame 90-76. Then in the finals, Trinity faced a fired up Sto-Rox team and a combination of Rox defense and just plain ole bad shooting even on uncontested shots caused them to suffer just their 7th loss against 125 wins in the last four years as they lost the final 62-53. Trinity's record over the last three years was 95-3, one of the best of all-time in the PIAA.

15. Moon (29-3) (District 7 AAA)

Ranked all year as our #1 western AAA team, Moon took the state title with a hard fought 52-50 win over previously undefeated Holy Ghost Prep. To get to Hershey they defeated Slippery Rock 75-43, Grove City 52-45, Pittsburgh Perry 59-58 and Bradford 54-36.

16. Holy Ghost Prep (31-1) (District 1 AAA)

Raced to wins over Lancaster Catholic 60-51 (not that close) and Hanover Area 68-35 to set up the big match with Steelton-Highspire. The Firebirds surprised the Rollers 48-43 then rallied from 10-point halftime deficit to down Conrad Weiser 49-39. May have had a little letdown after all that, when they lost to a very good Moon team 52-50 in the state title game.

17. Steelton-Highspire (26-4) (District 3 AAA)

Rollers ran past Harriton 75-60 and Bethlehem Catholic 56-41 in 1st two rounds of state tournament before losing to Holy Ghost Prep 48-43 in eastern semifinals.

18. Reading (26-5) (District 3 AAAA)

District 3 champions, opened state play with a 58-42 win over William Tennent. Was then upset by Parkland 54-52 in east quarterfinal. Knights not hurt much in ratings, because they earlier owned a 15-point win over Parkland, lost this one on a last second shot and the loss was Parkland's closest game until they lost in state final to Penn Hills.

19. George Junior Republic (20-7) (District 10 AAAA)

Started off state tournament by crushing New Castle 87-58 but then was beaten by WPIAL champion, Chartiers Valley 60-54 and saw season end quick.

20. Cheltenham (26-3) (District 1 AAAA)

The Panthers opened PIAA state tournament play with an 84-67 win over Mechanicsburg but then fell behind upstart Central Dauphin by 17pts in the 3rd quarter. They used an all out rally in the final 8 minutes to pull within 2pts but could not pull out win and lost 64-62.

21. Connellsville (26-4) (District 7 AAAA)

Defeated both Penn Hills (50-48) and Pittsburgh Central Catholic (54-50) in WPIAL playoffs before losing to Chartiers Valley 57-47 in the final. In the state tournament they opened with a 75-70 win over Latrobe before sent home for the season by Penn Hills 55-54.

22. Whitehall (27-4) (District 11 AAAA)

Zephers defeated Wissahickon 54-28 in 1st round of states but then were beaten by Red Lion 33-32 on a last second shot at the buzzer. Still they beat Parkland four times and that can not be overlooked.

23. Parkland (24-10) (District 11 AAAA)

Started off state tourney with a 51-47 overtime win over Ridley, then came the shocker over Reading 54-52 when they overcame a 7-point deficit in the last 3 minutes on a throw in shot with 4-seconds left. After that it was a 56-47 win over Central Dauphin, no surprise, and a 54-50 win over York, a mild surprise, that led the Trojans into the state final. But once there, they ran into a team with way to much height and lost to Penn Hills 57-48. The four losses to Whitehall, two league games, one in Lehigh Valley Tournament and one in District championship plus a 15 point loss earlier to Reading and 10 losses overall prevents this team from being rated any higher.

24. York (25-9) (District 3 AAAA)

The Bearcats found it hard going getting out of District 3, losing to Harrsiburg and Central Dauphin to finish #6. But once in the state tournament they made waves right away with a 63-55 win over Chester. It was a big win even though the Clippers were without a half dozen or so players at the time. They then defeated Plymouth-Whitemarsh, who had just defeated Harrisburg, 51-48. Next came their 3rd win of the season over Red Lion 57-44. Now in the eastern final, they came up short losing to Parkland 54-50.

25. Plymouth-Whitemarsh (24-7) (District 1 AAAA)

Opened state tournament play with a 57-51 win over Harrisburg but then was defeated by York 51-48 to end a successful season. Should be heard from next year as the started a junior, 2 sophomores and a freshmen.

26. Aliquippa (24-4) (District 7 AA)

WPIAL champs after a 70-64 victory over Beaver Falls in title game. Opened state play with 59-47 win over Ligonier Valley. Then was beaten by eventual state champ, Sto-Rox 58-53.

27. Beaver Falls (26-5) (District 7 AA)

Knocked off Sto-Rox 50-46 in WPIAL semifinals, but lost championship to Aliquippa 70-64. In state tournament play, the Tigers advanced to the western finals with wins over Conemaugh Township 77-54, Jeannette 70-52 and Keystone 80-63. Then they were beaten by Sto-Rox 69-62.

28. Pittsburgh Central Catholic (24-6) (District 7 AAAA)

Makes ratings almost solely on the strength of 65-61 overtime upset of Erie McDowell in west quarterfinals. Opened playoffs with 69-43 romp over Hollidaysburg. After the win over McDowell they were sent home by Penn Hills 65-54.

29. Red Lion (29-4) (District 3 AAAA)

Lions defeated Harrisburg 68-62 in District 3 semifinals, but then were stung by Reading 54-24 in the final. In state play they started off well with a 73-61 win over Glen Mills, then knocked off Whitehall 34-33, but the season was ended again by York High 57-44. Red Lion lost only to York and Reading.

30. Harrisburg (22-7) (District 3 AAAA)

It's been along time since the Cougars have fallen this far in these ratings. But it was a combination of losses to Red Lion 68-62 in the District 3 semifinals and Plymouth-Whitemarsh 57-51 in the first round of states along with some big time upsets in the eastern bracket in AAAA, AAA and AA and even a couple of surprises in state final games that sealed the gloom for the proud Cougar program. Actually we feel Harrisburg was better than this, but usually its hard to overlook two playoff losses. Actually York was beaten by Harrisburg and lost three playoff games, but they beat the two teams Harrisburg lost to and made it to the eastern final.

HONORABLE METION: Philadelphia - John Bartram 16-8, Olney 22-4, LaSalle 19-8, West Catholic 17-9, Frankford 15-10, Franklin Learning Center 21-5, Central 16-6, Engineering & Science 20-5, Archbishop Ryan 16-9, Archbishop Wood 15-12, Strawberry Mansion 15-10, Ben Franklin 15-10 and University City 15-11.

PIAA AAAA - Erie Cathedral Prep 18-7, Ridley 24-6, Wissahickon 23-7, Central Dauphin 19-12, Hazleton Area 21-7, McKeesport 18-8, Pittsburgh Allderdice 19-7, Pittsburgh Schenley 19-8.

PIAA AAA - Oxford 26-5, Pittsburgh Perry 24-6, Conrad Weiser 30-4, York Northeastern 22-8, Harriton 19-8, Allentown Central Catholic 17-11, Bethlehem Catholic 22-8, Johnstown 25-4, Bradford 21-7, Lewistown 26-5, West Allegheny 17-11, Lebanon 26-6, Hanover Area 27-3, Milton 21-6, Danville 21-5, General McLane 23-5, Kennett 21-7.

PIAA AA - Jeanette 21-7, Green Pond Notre Dame 24-8, Freeport 18-7, Pottstown St. Pius X 20-8, York Catholic 19-11, Northwest 22-9, Keystone 24-5, Wilkes-Barre GAR 17-12.

PIAA A - Kingston Bishop O'Reilly 30-4, Sewickley Academy 26-5, Elk County Catholic 27-3, Elkland 27-3, Roseto St. Pius X 20-9, Johnsonburg 26-5, Scotland 22-6, Kennedy Catholic 24-5, Faith Christian 24-7, Vincentian Academy 22-10, Muncy 23-5, Philadelphia Girard College 21-8.

NOTES: The Honorable Mention teams are in no special order..

There were many more upsets this year than most years in AAAA and some minor surprises in AAA and AA. Two teams Oxford (26-5) and Philadelphia Olney (22-4) are teams who should have finished in the top 30 but there was just no room this year. Have a great spring and summer I am off to Florida for three weeks probably by the time you are see this.

~ Jerry Shenk


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