Valley's boys soccer team prepares for WPIAL playoff debut
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Senior defender Drew Buzzell said a new, positive outlook has taken root among Valley's boys soccer players.
A major jump in number of victories and the first-ever trip to the WPIAL playoffs will do that.
Valley, which started its boys soccer program in 1990, will make its postseason debut after years of residing in or near the basement of its section.
Valley (10-4-3), seeded No. 13, will try to feed off its newfound confidence when the Vikings visit No. 4 Quaker Valley (14-3-1) at 8 p.m. Monday for a Class AA first-round game.
“I can feel it's different from when I came up as a freshman,” Buzzell said. “When I first came up, we knew that even if we tried as hard as we could, we might not win. Now we know if we do what we're coached to do, we should put a win together.”
Valley placed third in Section 1-AA with an 8-1-3 mark. The Vikings' section results include a split with first-place Indiana (12-4, 10-2) and a pair of ties with second-place Burrell (13-1-2, 9-1-2).
Considering Valley posted a combined record of 7-43-2 in the three previous seasons, it's clear this year has been a breakthrough campaign.
Valley coach Andy DeAntonio, in his seventh season, played for the Vikings before graduating in 1998.
“I'm excited about the position the program is in,” he said. “It was a couple years of work and dedication from these players. I'm not putting the other teams down that came before them, but these kids need to be given a lot of credit.”
Valley finished 2-15, 1-11 in the section last season. However, the Vikings graduated only one starter, and the team's collective experience and dedication to improving has paid off.
“These kids put in the time during the offseason,” DeAntonio said. “They made a commitment at the end of last season.”
With only two senior starters, Valley could keep the good times rolling.
In addition to Buzzell, forward Steve Colagrande is a senior.
The other starters are juniors Dom Guzzi (forward), Josh Noel (goalkeeper), Cody Schrecongost (defender), Luke Thimons (midfielder), Tanner Walker (midfielder) and Ethan Walkowiak (midfielder), and sophomores Ben Carlisle (defender), Caleb Davis (midfielder) and Zach Hall (defender).
Noel, a two-year starter, has recorded seven shutouts, including three in a row to cap the regular season.
“The defense in front of him does a nice job of protecting him,” DeAntonio said. “But when those balls get through, he knows he's going to have to come up big. And he does it time and time again.”
Paul Kogut is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at email@example.com or 724-224-2696.
Show commenting policy
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.
- Emergency crews check report of Hempfield ATV-train crash
- Ex-Baldwin, Pitt star Pinkston not giving up on NFL dream
- Man shot multiple times in Hill; suspects sought
- Pirates chase Mets’ Harvey early in rout
- Harlan: Coveted North Hills lineman fits up-tempo style
- Former pitcher Allie happily adjusting to outfield
- ‘Ninja Warrior’ breathes life into Carrie Furnaces
- Going the distance no longer part of the game
- Pa. gaming industry’s growth amplifies siren call for addicts
- Biertempfel: Despite Marte’s inconsistency, Pirates’ Hurdle keeping faith
- Book details secret to Pirates’ turnaround