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Avonworth tops Greensburg Central Catholic again to reach PIAA final for first-time in school history

Avonworth tops Greensburg Central Catholic again to reach PIAA final for first-time in school history

PIAA Boys 1A Semifinal

Avonworth 1, Greensburg Central Catholic 0

 

This time, in a rematch of the WPIAL Class 1A final, Avonworth’s lead would hold up against Greensburg Central Catholic.

The Antelopes advanced to its first-ever PIAA state final with a 1-0 win over WPIAL rival Greensburg Central on Tuesday night at Fox Chapel, as Sam Guzzo’s goal in the 17th minute held up.

Avonworth (23-0-1) advances to play District 4 champ Millville (21-2) at 1:30 Friday at Hershey Park Stadium. Millvale downed District 1 champ Faith Christian, 3-0, to advance.

ED THOMPSON’S PHOTO GALLERY

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HOW IT HAPPENED

Much like the WPIAL final, the Lopes scored early in the match.

Guzzo took a few nifty touches, then delivered a clinical finish after receiving a ball from the left side to give Avonworth the 1-0 lead in the 17th minute.

With its star player, and Pitt commit, Luke Mort sidelined by an injury, Greensburg Central Catholic (19-3) wasn’t able to generate the same number of chances as they did in the WPIAL final when they rallied from a 2-0 deficit to force the game to extra time.

It was a physical, hard-fought match, and the Antelopes mostly kept the Centurians in check for much of the first half.

GCC Junior Nathan Ward had a couple of quality shots.

Avonworth’s goalkeeper Timmy Stewart finished with 11 saves. Brewer had five saves for the Centurions.

The Centurians kept coming until the final minute of the match.

Stewart was put to work in the final 10 minutes, including one last dangerous effort from GCC’s Ethan Boyle who blasted a shot that the Avonworth keeper smothered.

“I’m blessed to be in this type of position right now for my team,” said Stewart, who wasn’t able to finish the last game against GCC. “I’m just so thankful and a great fulfilling moment.”

After the match, Stewart shared in the moment with his biggest supporters.

 

 

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets including Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, and more. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

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