Bethel Park girls volleyball team eliminates Norwin from states
TribLIVE Sports Videos
The Norwin girls volleyball team's longest postseason run since the 1990s ended at the hands of a team making it longest postseason run in program history.
Norwin (15-3) fell in a three-set sweep (25-20, 26-24 and 25-21) to Bethel Park in the PIAA Class AAA quarterfinals Saturday at Baldwin High School. The Black Hawks, who until this season had never advanced past the WPIAL quarterfinals, moved on to the PIAA semifinals, where they will meet Hempfield of District 3 on Tuesday.
“We were pretty well-prepared for them,” Bethel Park coach Shawn Palmer said. “I think we were confident coming in. We had a good three or four days of practice.”
While Bethel Park moved on to the semifinals, Norwin's most successful season since the 1990s ended. The Knights hadn't advanced to the PIAA tournament in more than 15 years.
“I think we had a really good season,” coach Mary Ellen Ferragonio said. “I'm really proud of them. They pushed themselves and played well all season, so you can't take that away from them. They did awesome. Today, we just didn't seem to be able to get it together. Why, I don't know. That's the million-dollar question.”
Norwin particularly struggled in trying to stop Bethel Park hitter Stacey Kazalas, who recorded 16 kills, including nine in a dominant first set.
“The kid can play,” Palmer said. “She's probably our go-to attacker, although we're starting to spread the ball around a little more. When that kid gets on a roll, she's our difference-maker.”
Although Bethel Park took control of the first set midway through, Norwin rebounded with a strong second set. The Knights led for much of the set and held a game point at 24-23, but Bethel Park scored three straight points to prevail.
Ferragonio said the momentum from the end of the second set carried over to the third, when Bethel Park again took control midway through and held on for a victory.
“It seemed like they had more momentum than we had, or most of it,” she said. “I don't know why.”
Olivia Schanck added nine kills for Bethel Park, while Catherine Ferragonio led Norwin with 13 kills.
Coach Ferragonio hopes the momentum from this season carries over for Norwin, which will return several key players in 2014.
“I think in the next few years, from what I see in middle school, we have a pretty nice group coming up each year,” she said. “So I'm excited for what's to come.”
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.
- 3 sets of siblings help Greensburg Central Catholic volleyball achieve championship success
- Brentwood volleyballs looks back on season
- Thomas Jefferson girls’ volleyball team flourishing