BETHEL PARK – The celebration in the Peters Township High School boys basketball team’s visiting locker room at Bethel Park was so loud, it might have been heard back in McMurray.

The Indians’ joy was well earned.

Peters Township (4-1, 11-3) jammed a flag at the top of Class 5A’s Section 1 with a pulsating 75-67 win on Jan. 17.

The Indians were paced by three double-digit scorers in Jack Dunbar (26 points), Jake Ziegler (15 points) and Nate Miller (12 points).

Brendan McCullough was held to seven points by the Black Hawks (4-1, 9-4) but his 10 assists were key in helping the Indians hold off Bethel Park throughout the night.

“He’s seeing the floor real well for us now and is a willing passer,” Peters Township coach Joe Urmann noted. “We’re real lucky to have him.”

Bethel Park was paced by Shawn Davis’ 23 points. Ben Guffey added 16 for the Black Hawks.

Dunbar announced his presence with authority early with 13 first-quarter points, two of which came off an emphatic dunk that seemed to send a message the Indians meant business.

“He has a heck of a motor and a special skillset, for sure,” Urmann added.

A 13-2 Peters Township run helped give the visitors a 24-17 lead midway through the second quarter. But a 19-9 Bethel Park surge pushed the Black Hawks to a 36-33 halftime advantage.

Bethel Park seemed to assume control late in the third as Davis scored consecutive baskets to give the Black Hawks a 52-48 lead with 1:30 left. But the toughness and resolve Peters Township had in storage was displayed over the final 9:30 of the contest as the Indians took the game over and never looked back.

A 13-0 run, keyed by transition baskets courtesy of Dunbar, McCullough and Ziegler, spurred the Indians to a 61-52 lead midway through the fourth quarter.

Bethel Park rallied behind Davis as he scored off a layup with 1:44 left to slice the Peters Township lead to 66-64. Davis tied the game moments later with a putback, but the Indians put the game away courtesy of Miller’s four-for-six performance from the foul line down the stretch.

A key moment also occurred late when Thomas Aspinall drew a charge from a driving Davis that turned the ball over to the Indians and drew a technical foul from Bethel Park coach Dante Calabria.

“We did a real good job just staying in the moment,” Urmann noted. “That was one of those plays that was very big for us.”

It was here that Miller went to work from the foul line and took the Indians home to an important section win on the road.

“Our guys had a really good next play mentality,” Urmann added. “When you play fast like us, if you think about the past, it takes away from the ability to play fast.”

For BP, the loss came on the heels of an 82-71 win against Thomas Jefferson. The Jaguars had beaten Peters Township previously but it took three overtimes.

In the win against the Jaguars, Davis (24), Mike Mathias (19), Guffey (19) and Jack Bruckner (12) all finished in double figures.

Previously, the Indians thumped Trinity, 75-44. McCullough (17), Dunbar (11) and Ziegler (10) were in double digits.

OTHER ACTIONIn Class 6A action, Upper St. Clair and Mt. Lebanon both defeated Canon-McMillan.

Julian Dahlem (12), Devin Hall (12), Matthew Gaither (11) and Christian Ito (10) led USC in a 65-39 triumph against the Big Macs.

Nate Girod tossed in 18 markers to pace the Blue Devils to victory, 62-41, over the Big Macs.

Previously, Lebo dispatched Norwin, 69-50. Lucas Garofoli topped out with 23 tallies while Tanner Donati followed with 14 points.

USC needed overtime to dispatch Baldwin, 47-46. Ito tossed in 10 tallies in the triumph.

In Section 4, Class 5A action, both South Fayette and Chartiers Valley succumbed to top-ranked North Hills.

The Lions fell in overtime, 62-61. Michael Plasko fired in 29 points while Gavin Orosz and Elijah Hall followed with 14 and 13 tallies.

The Colts dropped a 78-74 decision to the Indians. Jayden Davis tossed in 24 markers while Drew Sleva (15), Rudy Morris (14) and Julian Semplice (13) also finished in double figures.

Previously, Colts lost to Mars, 71-34. Sleva had 14 points in the game.

SF rebounded to beat West Allegheny, 59-36. Elijah Hall topped out with 23 points while Nico Lamonde and Plasko finished with 13 and 10 markers.

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