WPIAL soccer teams are out in force at PIAAs
It's the WPIAL's drive for five.
The PIAA boys and girls soccer championships are Friday and Saturday at Hersheypark Stadium, and the WPIAL is represented in five of the six games.
It's only the fourth time the WPIAL has had five PIAA soccer finalists.
There are more classifications now than in any time in the past, but that won't do anything to diminish the championships that Upper St. Clair (Class AAA boys), Sewickley Academy (Class A boys), Peters Township (Class AAA girls), Moon (Class AA girls) or Greensburg Central Catholic (Class A girls) could potentially win this weekend.
If nothing else, the WPIAL has a chance to come home with three titles. The district has never won more than two in a single year, including girls teams from Peters Township and Mars last season.
“It's exciting to see western Pennsylvania soccer developing,” Sewickley Academy senior defender Max Proie said. “It's cool all those other teams are going up to states, too. We all want western Pennsylvania soccer to do well.”
A closer look at the local teams:
• Greensburg Central Catholic's Frannie Crouse (Penn State) and Malea Fabean (Pitt) are Division I recruits who have helped the Centurions (22-1) meet their lofty expectations thus far. WPIAL champion Greensburg Central Catholic carries a 22-game winning streak coming into the PIAA title game against District 12 champion Conwell Egan (11-6-1) at 5 p.m. on Friday.
• Sewickley Academy (21-1-1) has made it one step farther than it did last season, when it lost in the PIAA semifinals. Led by J.P. Bowell's 28 goals, the Panthers play District 2 champion Mountain View at 7:30 p.m. on Friday. Mountain View (17-0) is undefeated and has scored 14 goals in its three PIAA tournament games.
• Led by 11 seniors, Moon (23-2) goes after its first PIAA championship in its third appearance in the title game, when the Tigers play District 12 champion Archbishop Wood (18-2-2) at 11 a.m. on Saturday. Antonia Grese, Kallie Conte and Chelsea Leipold have combined for more than 50 goals this season for WPIAL runner-up Moon.
• At 4 p.m. Saturday against District 3's Cumberland Valley (22-2-1), Peters Township (23-1) will go for its third consecutive PIAA championship in its fourth PIAA title game appearance over the past five years. Veronica Latsko and Olivia Roberson have combined for 74 goals this season for the Indians.
• Upper St. Clair is making its sixth PIAA title game appearance, including last year, when it lost, 1-0, to Conestoga. The Panthers (21-2-1) lost out to Peters Township for the Section 5-AAA title and to section foe Canon-McMillan in the WPIAL title game but can win their third PIAA championship at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday against Wilson (25-2-1) of District 3.