High school roundup: Ellis School, Pine-Richland win WPIAL field hockey titles
Ellis School won its fourth straight WPIAL Class A field hockey championship Wednesday night with a 2-1 victory over Shady Side Academy at North Allegheny's Newman Stadium.
Ellis School became the first team to win four consecutive WPIAL crowns since North Allegheny won seven in a row from 1998-2004. It is the eighth WPIAL title for Ellis.
For most of the night, the game had a back-and-forth pace, with each team getting a fair share of scoring opportunities. Shady Side goalie Clara McCormick and Ellis netminder Genna Barge kept the contest scoreless until the Tigers broke through on a penalty corner late in the first half. With 1:18 remaining before halftime, senior Corinne Hartman tallied a goal to give Ellis School a 1-0 lead going into intermission.
In the second half, Ellis was able to extend the lead on another penalty corner. Freshman Tegan Poerio scored her team-leading 31st goal of the season with 19:03 left for a 2-0 lead.
Following the Poerio goal, Shady Side Academy first-year coach Valerie Lohr called a timeout, and the Indians responded with inspired play in the remaining minutes. On their own penalty corner opportunity, the Indians cashed in with 13:25 on the clock courtesy of a marker by junior Ella Benec to trim the score to 2-1. For the night, Shady Side was 1 for 9 on penalty corners and Ellis School was 2 for 8.
Shady Side Academy continued to pressure in the waning minutes but ultimately couldn't find the equalizer as Ellis School hung on for the 2-1 triumph.
Ellis School advanced to the PIAA playoffs and will open state tournament play Tuesday night.
Pine-Richland was making its third appearance in four years in the WPIAL Class AAA championship game Wednesday night, and the Rams were able to finally attain what had been an elusive WPIAL title with a 4-0 win over host North Allegheny.
In a battle of Section 1 rivals, Pine-Richland (16-2) dictated the pace in the first half. That consistent pressure resulted in a goal by senior Marina Miller with 16:57 to go in the half for a 1-0 lead. The lead could have been even larger for the Rams if not for the strong goaltending of NA senior Emma Jorgensen and defensive play of junior Trystan Laughrey. With nine minutes left in the half, Jorgensen made back-to-back saves to deny P-R's Vivian Cavanaugh and Laughrey, followed with another save to thwart Cavanaugh to keep the score at 1-0.
In the second half, Cavanaugh scored a pair of goals and sophomore Alexa Sharon added another to lift Pine-Richland to a 4-0 victory. It was the 11th shutout of the season for sophomore goalie Abby Baratka, who was never tested. North Allegheny did not register a shot on net.
Pine-Richland and North Allegheny (12-7) advance to the PIAA playoffs.
Pine-Richland 2, Canon-McMillan 1 (OT) — Justin Rossmiller scored in overtime to give Pine-Richland (14-5-2) a win in the WPIAL Class AAAA consolation game and a spot in the PIAA playoffs.
Jonah Moore scored for Canon-McMillan (13-7) in the first half. Pine-Richland's Niko Marsh tied the game with 23 seconds left in regulation.
South Fayette 1, Chartiers Valley 0 — In the WPIAL Class AAA consolation game, Rudy Panda scored on an assist from Ethan Sanders to lead South Fayette (15-5-2) to victory and a spot in the PIAA playoffs.
Tim Locher posted the shutout with nine saves.
Beaver 3, Central Valley 2 — Gabe Obrist scored with 28 seconds left in double overtime to give Beaver (9-9-3) a victory in the WPIAL Class AA consolation game.
Conner Kelly and Frank Sestito also scored for Beaver.
The win sends the Bobcats to the PIAA tournament.
Seton LaSalle 2, Winchester Thurston 0 — Darryl Daniels and Ethan Gardner scored to lead Seton LaSalle (18-2-2) to a win in the wPIAL Class A consolation game. The Rebels will play in the PIAA tournament Tuesday.
North Allegheny 3, Upper St. Clair 1 — Ava Ruppersberger scored twice as North Allegheny (19-7-1) won a WPIAL Class AAAA consolation game to advance to the PIAA playoffs.
South Park 3, Montour 1 — Jordyn Minda, Nicole Clydesdale and Carly Pcholinsky scored to lift South Park (17-3-1) to a WPIAL Class AAA consolation game victory. The Eagles advanced to the PIAA playoffs.
Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic 1, Seton LaSalle 0 — Tori Michalski scored with 30 seconds remaining to lift Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic (16-5) to victory in the WPIAL Class A consolation game. The win earned the Trojanettes a spot in the PIAA tournament.