ShareThis Page

A-K Valley notebook: Wrestlers continue pipeline to UPJ

| Friday, May 19, 2017, 9:09 p.m.
Barry Reeger | For The Tribune-Review
Kiksi Area's Matt Siszka starts to turn Valley's Kain Stone during their 120-pound quarterfinal bout during the Westmoreland County Coaches Association wrestling tournament at Franklin Regional on Jan. 6, 2017 in Murrysville. Siszka won by fall at 3:55.
Ken Reabe Jr. | For The Tribune-Review
Jefferson Morgan's Gavin Teasdale wrestles Burrell's Dillan Jeffrey (left) in their 126-pound championship bout during the PIAA Class AA Southwest Regional tournament Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017, at Kovalchick Center in Indiana.

The Alle-Kiski Valley seemingly has a pipeline to the Pitt-Johnstown wrestling program, and that trend continued this spring.

Burrell's Dillan Jeffrey and Kiski Area's Matt Siszka committed to the Mountain Cats as part of their 2017-18 recruiting class, which UPJ announced recently.

The pair will join Burrell graduates Al Beattie, Steve Edwards and Corey Falleroni, as well as Kiski Area's Cole Landowski as part of the UPJ program. Burrell in particular has a strong UPJ contingent, with past graduates including Travis McKillop and current Burrell assistant coaches Chris Como and Isaac Greeley.

Jeffrey went 34-13 as a senior, finishing second at the WPIAL Class AA championships and the PIAA Southwest Regional tournament. He qualified for the PIAA individual championships for the first time and also helped Burrell win its 11th consecutive WPIAL Class AA team championship.

Siszka finished 32-13, earning his 100th career victory at the WPIAL Class AAA championships. He came within one victory of qualifying for the PIAA individual championships and also helped Kiski Area win the WPIAL Class AAA team title and finish third in the state team tournament.

Trojan horse

Leechburg softball coach Debbie Young sent one of her assistants to scout the WPIAL Class A first-round game between California and Union on Tuesday, with the winner slated to play the Blue Devils.

When she got an early score update — Union led 11-0 in the third inning — Young announced to her players the likelihood of a quarterfinal matchup with Union.

Not so fast. California stormed back to win the game 19-15, in 11 innings.

“That had to be unbelievable,” Young said.

Leechburg made sure it wouldn't become California's second victim, pounding the Trojans, 15-2, Thursday to advance to Tuesday's WPIAL semifinals.

You again

The prevalence of perennial contenders across WPIAL sports means even teams from different sections can develop postseason rivalries after several matchups.

Deer Lakes boys volleyball encountered Montour in the playoffs for the second consecutive season, defeating the Spartans, 3-0, in the WPIAL Class AA quarterfinals Thursday. The Lancers also prevailed over Montour in last season's WPIAL consolation match, the 2012 WPIAL consolation match and the 2011 WPIAL championship match.

Freeport softball met South Park for the second straight season. Playing the Eagles in the same round (the WPIAL quarterfinals) and at the same location (Hampton Community Park), the Yellowjackets suffered the same result, bowing out of the postseason with a 13-3 loss.

Deer Lakes baseball will attempt to avoid a similar fate Monday with a matchup against No. 12 Quaker Valley in the WPIAL Class 4A quarterfinals. In the teams' last postseason meeting, the 2014 WPIAL consolation game, Quaker Valley won in 10 innings to deny the Lancers a spot in the PIAA playoffs.

Let's play two

By virtue of advancing to the WPIAL semifinals, the Deer Lakes and Leechburg softball teams assured themselves of one thing: Tuesday won't be their last game.

Should Deer Lakes beat South Park in the Class 4A semifinals and Leechburg beat West Greene in the Class A semifinals, the teams would advance to the WPIAL championship game later next week at Cal (Pa.).

But even a loss won't end their seasons: They would then play in the WPIAL consolation game, with a win there giving them entry into the PIAA playoffs.

Doug Gulasy is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at dgulasy@tribweb.com or via Twitter @dgulasy_Trib.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.