Justina Mascaro, Shannon Conely chosen to The Almanac’s Girls Basketball All Star team

Russell Finelsen, Assistant Editor, Sports Editor

The girls basketball team had a great season. After starting the year 3-4, the team wound up with a 21-6 record and a WPIAL Class AAAA crown. This great record was mainly due to the Lady Hawks winning 17 straight before losing to Penn Hills in the WPIAL semifinals. They then entered the PIAAs with high spirits before losing to Norwin early in the tournament. Even with the disappointing loss, some players got rewarded for their hard work.

Justina Mascaro and Shannon Conely were chosen for this year’s edition of The Almanac’s Elite Eleven. They will play on the first squad of All-Stars, which also includes Seton-La Salle’s Nicolete Newman, Bishop Canevin’s Gina Vallecorsa, and Canon-McMillan’s Danielle Parker. The roster was released on April 7.

1. Justina Mascaro: Sophomore forward. The second tallest player on the team, Mascaro was a valuable asset to the team. After averaging less than 7.5 points per game in her freshman year, when she was Rookie of the Year, Mascaro raised her points-per-game average to 15.5. In addition, she got seven rebounds per game. In addition, she made key shots in many games that helped Bethel Park emerge as a victor.

“Justina plays hard all of the time,” coach Jonna Burke said to The Almanac. “She became a force in the passing for us this season. She had potential to add even more to her game for her remaining seasons [in Bethel Park].”

Mascaro will be a big force in her last two years as a Lady Hawk.

Shannon Conely: Senior guard. In her final season in Bethel Park, Conely became an even bigger star on the team. Wherever she was on the court, she could sink in a shot and get her team needed points.

“Shannon came up big for us time and time again,” Coach Burke said to The Almanac. 

This year, Conely averaged 13.8 points per game. Whether it is inside the paint or outside the arc, Conely is a great player on every team.

Even though no one made the second team, Kaitlyn Chess and Mia Mattes were chosen as honorable mentions. Chess, a senior forward who was a captain on the team, was chosen for the second team on the Section 4 All-Star team. Meanwhile, Mattes was an honorable mention for the all-section squad. In addition, the senior guard is known around the league as one of the best three-point shooters.

Furthermore, Coach Burke was chosen to be the Coach of the Year.

Congratulations to these great individuals. They did well on the basketball court this year and will do even better in years to come.

To see more about the All-Star team’s roster, click here.