Upper St. Clair girls basketball is under construction and Pete Serio had donned a hard hat to build the Panthers into a playoff contender in 2020.
“We’ve lost all five starters to graduation so while we have depth, we lack experience,” said Serio, who is in sixth year as floor boss. “I’m looking forward to seeing what we can do with the mix of returning players and newcomers.”
Serio expects his five incoming freshmen will “contribute” immediately. They include: Kate Robbins, Ava Keating, Mia Brown, Sam Prunzik and Paige Dellicarri.
Yet, the Panthers have big shoes to fill as they lost much of their offensive punch.
Sarah Price, who averaged 11 points and seven rebounds, has taken her 6-foot skills to Allegheny College. Lindsay Meyer, who led USC in steals and deflections while also managing eight points a game, is playing at Penn-State Berhend. The squad’s leading 3-point field goal shooter, Cassie Kartsonas, has departed as well. She supplied nine points per game.
Lost to graduation also were: Allison Dellicarri, Marley McClintock, Bella Goldman and Chloe Schuler.
Blending in with the newcomers are some seasoned veterans like juniors Alex Prunzik and Izzy Psillidis along with Emily Rocco. This year’s senior group includes: Sarah Steve, Jill Rocco, and Casey Bakayza while Molly James was on the roster last season as a freshman.
In a division that boasts Peters Township, the reigning district and state champion, as well as rivals like Bethel Park and Mt. Lebanon, Section 6A promises to be a challenge for a young club like USC that its objectives are simple.
“Our section is so difficult,” Serio said, “we are taking this one game at a time and looking to grow and learn.’