HERMITAGE, Pa. (WKBN) – The defending PIAA Class 2A champions are back for more. Last year, in the state tournament, Kennedy Catholic won each of its’ five games by a margin of 12-points or more including the title tilt against Homer Center (65-45).

Coach Justin Magestro must replace the graduation of three key contributors – Hayden Keith (7.0 ppg, 2.3 apg), Casandra Dancak (6.1 ppg, 5.0 rpg) and Isabella Bianco (9.4 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 2.0 apg).

Kennedy returns a pair of starters in juniors Layke Fields (19.3 ppg, 10.9 rpg) and Monique Vincent (9.0 ppg, 4.8 apg, 2.6 spg). Fields was named the state’s Player of the Year in Class 2A as well as WKBN’s Starting 5 team.

They’ll be joined by sophomores Bella Magestro (12.2 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 4.0 aog, 2.5 spg) and Ka’Mya Thompkins as well as juniors Madison Pfleger and Lochlyn Shimrack. As a freshman, Magestro was named to the Second-Team All-State.

“With six returning players from the state championship team,” coach Magestro pointed out, “We have a nice mix of youth and experience. We expect to be deep and balanced. Our expectations are high as every year and these girls understand the responsibility that comes with being a traditional girls’ basketball power.”

Keep an eye on freshmen Tori Harvey, Sophia Gargasz, Akira Cameron and Allison Perry as each could contribute towards this year’s team.

This year’s schedule should challenge the Eagles with matchups against Norwin (6A), North Catholic (4A), Blackhawk (4A), Canfield, Spire Institute, Wheeling Park and the defending West Virginia state champion Morgantown.

Magestro indicates, “If we can stay focused, we have a really good chance to get back to where we were last year and make some noise.”

Kennedy Catholic Golden Eagles
Fast Facts
Head Coach: Justin Magestro
2022-23 Record: 26-4 (14-0), 1st place in Region 1
2022-23 Post-Season Finish: Won PIAA (2A) championship over Homer Center

2022-23 Team Stats
Scoring Offense: 63.8
Scoring Defense: 30.2

2022-23 Individual Leaders
Scoring: Layke Fields – 19.3
Rebounding: Layke Fields – 10.9
Assists: Monique Vincent – 4.8
Steals: Monique Vincent – 2.6
Free Throw Percentage: Monique Vincent, 84.8%
Three-Point Percentage: Bella Magestro – 35.9%

2023-24 Schedule
Dec. 4 – at Canfield
Dec. 8 – at Morgantown
Dec. 9 – at University
Dec. 14 – Reynolds
Dec. 18 – at Farrell
Dec. 21 – Blackhawk
Dec. 27 – Norwin
Jan. 4 – Jamestown
Jan. 8 – at Lakeview
Jan. 11 – Commodore Perry
Jan. 15 – at Spire Institute
Jan. 18 – West Middlesex
Jan. 22 – at Mercer
Jan. 24 – at North Catholic
Jan. 25 – at Reynolds
Jan. 29 – Farrell
Feb. 1 – at Jamestown
Feb. 5 – Lakeview
Feb. 8 – at Commodore Perry
Feb. 12 – at West Middlesex
Feb. 14 – Wheeling Park
Feb. 15 – Mercer