Mapletown senior Dereck Riggleman arrived at the high school early on Jan. 6 to prepare for a home game against Geibel.
He was 33 points shy of 1,000 for his career and with a key Section 3-A matchup looming, the senior wanted to get into the gym to practice his shooting. He was not even thinking about the scoring. He simply wanted to win.
During warm ups, his shots were falling and with Mapletown being at home for just the second time this season, Riggleman was feeling optimistic about his team’s chances against the Gators.
He scored 33 points and then some. The senior scored a school-record 51 points on the Geibel defense to lead the Maples to a 66-60 victory over the Gators.
“It was a special moment,” Riggleman said. “Going into the game, I had to score 33 to reach 1,000, and I don’t think most people thought I could do that. It’s a night I’ll never forget.”
The Maples needed every one of Riggleman’s points. Mapletown trailed Geibel, 49-48, heading into the fourth quarter. With Mapletown looking to secure a playoff spot in Section 3-A, it could not afford a loss. Their senior leader’s historic performance propelled the Maples to a victory when they needed it the most.
“A lot of people hear he scored 51 points and they ask how I let him score that many points,” Mapletown head coach Craig Hoone said. “For it to be such a clutch performance makes it so much more impressive. We needed every basket he got.”
Riggleman is averaging 25.9 points per game for the Maples (1-2, 5-7) and attributes his success during his senior season to his offseason workout regimen. He spent hours watching game tape of NBA players and perfecting his moves inside the lane. While Mapletown has struggled at times this season, Riggleman’s has been a steady leader. He wants his teammates to see the extra work he puts into his game and prides himself on his ability to lead by example.
“I always try to work around the schedule and whenever we have practice, shoot as much as I can,” Riggleman said. “I’m not one of the loudest people you hear talking the whole time, but I want my teammates to know I am always paying attention and looking to help anyone no matter what.”
Gray named Top 100
Trinity junior Olivia Gray, a shortstop on the Hillers’ softball team, played a key role in the school’s Section 2-AAA title last season.
Her all-state selection as a freshman garnered Division I offers from multiple programs and she will continue her career at Pitt following her graduation in the spring of 2015. As Gray prepares for the Hillers’ softball season, she has earned another accolade. StudentSports.com has named her as the 87th best softball prospect in the country for the class of 2015.
Mike Marino, who served as the Trinity’s head coach last season and as an assistant during Gray’s freshman year, is not surprised by the attention the junior is receiving.
“Watching her workout is contagious,” Marino said. “It’s nothing for her to take 100 ground balls or take extra batting practice when everyone is gone. The way she handles herself on and off the field, it’s almost like it’s a leadership without having to be boisterous, but when she does speak, everyone listens. She knows the game, doesn’t panic and just has that calm confidence about her. You are fortunate as a coach to have a player like that who comes around once in a lifetime.”
Brumbaugh an All-America player
South Fayette junior quarterback Brett Brumbaugh’s postseason honors continue to roll in. His 3,917 passing yards and 41 touchdowns earned him the Observer-Reporter Player of the Year and the Pennsylvania Football Writers’ Class AA Player of the Year.
He can now add All-America to his résumé. MaxPreps.com named Brumbaugh as a second-team All-America player for medium-sized schools on Monday.