Greensburg Central Catholic girls reflect on 2nd straight PIAA title
TribLIVE Sports Videos
This season was not another perfect sweep of titles for the Greensburg Central Catholic girls soccer team, but it sure had a perfect ending.
A year after taking WPIAL and PIAA gold, the Centurions defended their state title Friday with a 2-1 win over Southern Columbia.
“It was a dream come true for the players and coaches as well,” Centurions coach Ashley Shasko said.
After being upset by Section 4 nemesis Shady Side Academy in the WPIAL championship, the Centurions (21-2) earned revenge in the state tournament by scoring a 2-0 victory over the Indians.
“Ultimately our goal was a state championship,” said Fran Crouse, the state's all-time leading scorer. “WPIAL is another great championship to win, but we were definitely hoping for a PIAA win.
“Winning this year meant a lot to me because it was my senior year, and I wanted to finish strong.”
She certainly did that. Crouse scored both goals in the PIAA championship to boost her career total to 208. She netted 66 goals this year, including 25 in eight playoff games. The Penn State recruit shared the spotlight with another record holder, Malea Fabean, a Pitt recruit who had the most assists in state history with 117. She finished her career with 152 goals, making her the only player in state history with more than 100 career goals and assists.
During Crouse's and Fabean's four years on the team, the Centurions racked up a 81-9-1 record, including 40 consecutive section wins. They outscored opponents 562-79.
Crouse always will have the championship medals, but said she will miss the teammates she won them with.
“I had such a fun time the past four years,” she said. “I've been incredibly blessed by the people I've gotten to play with.”
The loss of two historically great players is a motivation for next season. The returning players are eager to create their own history.
“We were good with them, but I think we'll be pretty good without them,” goalkeeper Olivia Binda said. “We have a strong, young team coming up.”
Binda, a junior, registered eight shutouts and allowed only one goal in three PIAA playoff matches. If that wasn't impressive enough, consider this: she played this year with a torn left ACL.
Also returning for a team that saw every player besides Binda score a goal are Bailey Cartwright (24 goals, 25 assists), Megan Shearson (5 goals, 25 assists) and Abby Skattell (7 goals, 9 assists).
The Centurions played with a bulls eye on their backs all year long, as teams upped their game in an effort to knock off the champs. Next season will be no different. Binda said she expects strong challenges from Shady Side and Springdale in the section.
In order to move forward, the program must remember the past. Crouse and Fabean will be gone next season but not forgotten, as the team prepares for another title defense.
“Malea and Fran set such a good example of the quality of player we want in terms of skill, as well as their leadership,” Shasko said. “They set a good example and our underclassmen are ready to follow it.”
Ed Phillipps is a freelance writer.
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.
- New Monroeville Mall policy aims to tame teen shoppers
- Munhall resident pleads guilty but mentally ill for killing his mother
- Business Gallery, March 1, 2015
- Butler County spotlight athletes: March 1, 2015
- Rostraver police investigating alleged sexual misconduct between Ringgold HS employee, student
- Finding perfect pairing for Ehrhoff key for Penguins
- Top residential, commercial deals of the week — March 1
- Greensburg pair jailed in convenience store robbery
- Ex-Brewers star Hart hopes to prove to Pirates he still can play
- Undefeated Aliquippa downs Seton-La Salle for WPIAL Class AA title
- To find best career path, start with a book, look to past