High school notebook: WPIAL splits decision on Lincoln Park transfers
The WPIAL issued a split decision on two Lincoln Park transfers Wednesday when it ruled Jihad Cromer ineligible and Michael Smith eligible.
Both basketball players transferred from Sto-Rox in August. Cromer is a junior. Smith is a sophomore.
The WPIAL board found that Cromer’s move was motivated at least partially by athletic intent, executive director Tim O’Malley said. However, Sto-Rox’s claim that Cromer was recruited to the charter school’s strong basketball program was unfounded, O’Malley said.
With Smith, Sto-Rox’s administrators argued that he transferred to avoid a disciplinary issue that included suspension from the basketball team. But that assertion wasn’t proven in Wednesday’s testimony, O’Malley said.
Lincoln Park will appeal Cromer’s decision.
“I believe that (Cromer), with all his difficulties, will be ruled eligible at the state,” athletic director Mike Bariski said. “There are some extenuating circumstances that can’t be shared.”
Another Lincoln Park basketball player has an eligibility hearing later this month.
The WPIAL will re-examine the case of junior Nick Aloi on Nov. 17.
The board in April declared Aloi ineligible until Jan. 21, 2015, the one-year anniversary of his transfer from Ellwood City. After Aloi appealed, the PIAA returned the case to the WPIAL for reconsideration.
Teams start practice Nov. 17. The season begins Dec. 5.
Perdue ruled eligible
McKeesport senior Khalil Perdue, a 17-point scorer last basketball season, was granted an additional year of eligibility. Perdue, in his fifth year of high school, was eligible under the PIAA bylaws for a hardship waiver, O’Malley said.
Root Sports will televise live the Class AAAA quarterfinal between No. 3 Central Catholic (8-1) and No. 6 Woodland Hills (7-2). Kickoff is 7:30 p.m.
Another Class AAAA matchup, No. 2 Penn-Trafford (10-0) and No. 7 North Allegheny (7-2), will be available to Comcast Xfinity customers starting Saturday through its on-demand service.
The Tri-County South went winless in the WPIAL Class A football playoffs for the fourth consecutive year. The conference is 0-16 since 2011. No. 4 seed Beth-Center came closest to ending the streak. The Bulldogs fumbled into the end zone with 23 seconds left in a 21-20 loss to No. 13 Riverside.
The four WPIAL football championship games will start at 11 a.m., 2 p.m., 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. But in what order the classifications will play has not been decided, O’Malley said. The championships are Nov. 21 at Heinz Field.