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#PIAA 1A Boys Final Preview: Resilient @Sewickley Looking For Back-To-Back Titles


Sewickley Academy (19-4, WPIAL Champions) vs Camp Hill (23-2, District 3 Champions)
Friday, November 18, 1:30 p.m. – Hersheypark Stadium
Broadcast – PCN-TV (click here for Cable TV schedule and live streaming information)

SEWICKLEY Napolene.jpg

Sewickley’s Mike Napoleone battles for a 50/50 ball (Photo courtesy Pittsburgh Tribune-Review)

The defending Single A PIAA Champions, Sewickley Academy have leaned on its experience to push through a postseason  run that has been filled with close, hard-fought wins as they pursue a fourth state title in program history.
The Panthers (21-4-0) will face District 3 champion Camp Hill at 1:30 p.m. on Friday at Hershey Stadium in the PIAA 1A Final, its fifth straight appearance in Hershey.

“We’ve been a resilient group,” said Boone.  “They know that no game will ever be easy in the playoffs.  It helps to have nine seniors, all who are contributing, that are going to Hershey for the second year in a row.  They know what to expect and will be prepared to play on a big field at Hershey.”

Senior forward Ian Deihle has come up with multiple game-winners including the golden goal in the Panthers WPIAL Final overtime 1-0 win over Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic, another in the PIAA quarterfinals vs Windber, and stayed on a roll on Tuesday as he scored two first-half goals in Tuesday night’s 2-0 win over Seton-La Salle on in the PIAA semifinal.

“He’s been our ‘Mr. Consistancy’ for us this year,” raved Boone.  “He’s been in the right place at the right time and we try to put him in position where he can score.  He gives us speed when we put him on the outside, but this year has been steady contributor at forward. In the box with the ball, he’s been a constant threat to score.”

While Boone admits that doesn’t know a lot about Camp Hill, his veteran group of players are prepared for a quality opponent.

“They’re a program that’s been here before, they can score and have been solid defensively all season,” said Boone.  “We’ll just have to play our game, and hopefully we’ll get one more goal than they do.”

Here’s what we do know about Camp Hill.

The District 3 Champs beat Kutztown on PK’s (4-2) after a 1-1 tie to advance to the final, but they were the dominant side.  According to Penn Live game report, they held a huge advantage in both possession and statistics for all 80 minutes of regulation play and two 15-minute overtimes.

Here’s my postgame interview with Boone after the Panthers captured the WPIAL crown on November 4 (as even I got a little bit doused with the water bucket from the players at the end of the interview).

If you are unable to make it to Hershey, all PIAA games will be televised on PCN. Pittsburgh Soccer Report will be posting updates of all WPIAL team results on Friday and Saturday.  

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

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