Connect with us


Sewickley Academy Outlasts Upstart North Catholic In OT

For 94 minutes you probably couldn’t tell the difference between the two teams battling for the WPIAL Boys 1A Soccer championship on Friday night at Highmark Stadium, as it was about as evenly played as any match in the history of the four-year stadium on the banks of the Monongahela.
It was Sewickley Academy (18-4), with nine seniors, coming off a season which they won a PIAA Championship, that won in dramatic fashion, 1-0, on a Ian Deihle goal in the extra period, that beat upstart Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic (18-3-1), a team with only one senior, who made it to the WPIAL finals in its playoff appearance in more than 20 years.
As the teams battled back and forth — each trading chances and runs of possession, it took a wild sequence in the 94th minute, as the game’s first overtime period was coming to a close,for the experienced team to pull out the victory.
After struggling to possess the ball early in the overtime, Sewickley started building up some nice passes into the box.    It culminated when senior midfielder Mike Napoleone received a cross right in the middle of the box and drilled a shot to the right of CWNC keeper Nathan Paras, who made an incredible diving save to deny the Panthers.
As the ball was cleared by the Trojans, Sewickley coach James Boone substituted Rees Blaylock into the game.  Blaylock took a long throw from the far right sideline into the box.  The ball skipped through to the far post area, where Ian Deihle was the man on the spot.  Deihle swiftly ended the game with a simple one-touch finish to beat Paras, and give Sewickley its seventh WPIAL title.
Here was a very happy and relieved Boone after the game (be sure to watch til the end, as the Sewickley players douse him with the water bucket).

For the record, it was the fifth straight WPIAL Boys Soccer Final decided on a golden goal, OT winner.
I will have more to add, including quotes from North Catholic Head Coach Jordan Weigand later in the evening/morning.

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. 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).

Riverhounds MF Danny Griffin

Subscribe to PGH Soccer Now

Enter your email address to subscribe to PGH Soccer Now and receive notifications of new posts by email.

More in Uncategorized