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Shady Side Academy aims to continue field hockey tradition

Kristina Serafini | The Herald
Teammates congratulate Shady Side Academy goaltender Gabby Harchelroad after she blocks a Sewickley Academy penalty stroke during the second half of the WPIAL Class AA field hockey championship at North Allegheny Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012.

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The Shady Side Academy field hockey team has made a habit of winning WPIAL championships and coach Erin Weir is optimistic about this year's chances of making it seven titles in nine years.

“We have only had one game so far and we lost to a strong Fox Chapel team, 1-0,” Weir said. “It was a good game for early in the season and showed us areas that we need to work on before our section games start.”

The Indians have a lot of experience returning, keyed by junior goalie Gabby Harchelroad.

“She has been our starting goalie for the past two years and she's done an excellent job for us,” Weir said.

“She's a hard worker and she hustles to every ball. She's a great leader in the backfield during games and is a good mentor to our freshman goalie.”

Along with Harchelroad, returning players include senior forwards Lucy Buck and Zoe Wecht, senior back Gigi Ruppel, junior back Erica Concordia, sophomore midfielder Corby Wolfe and sophomore forwards Sara Anania, Marjorie Crimmins and Maggie Aiken.

“We are confident that we will have a good season,” Weir said. “We need to work on our passing game and our communication as we get further into the season.

“We worked hard during the preseason but we also had a lot of fun. We're looking forward to the challenge of every game.”

Marty Stewart is a sports editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-782-2123 or mstewart@tribweb.com.

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