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PIAA 4A Girls Final Preview: Stingy CB-South Stand in Way of 1st State Title for Canon-Mac

PIAA Girls 4A Final 

Canon-McMillan (21-1-1, WPIAL Runner-Up) vs Central Bucks South (19-5-1)

Saturday, Nov. 19 – 4 p.m. – Hersheypark Stadium

Broadcast – PCN-TV (click here for Cable TV schedule and live streaming information)


Canon-McMillan players celebrate a goal after beating WPIAL Champs Norwin last Saturday.  The Big Macs face Central Bucks South in today’s PIAA final (Photo Courtesy Pittsburgh Tribune-Review) 

Canon-McMillan has lost only one time this year, a 3-1 defeat to fellow WPIAL foe Norwin in the district finals at Highmark Stadium on Nov. 5.

A week later the Big Macs found a chance to return the favor, beating Norwin 3-1 in the PIAA quartefinals, then won Tuesday’s semifinal with a resounding  4-1 victory over District 3 champion Cumberland Valley.

Now the Big Macs have another shot at redemption — as they return to Hershey focused to win an elusive state title.

Two years ago the Big Macs were on the verge of winning its first-ever PIAA girls soccer title — but Central Bucks West rallied late to get a goal in regulation, then took home the gold with a winner in overtime.

“The girls are excited. Even the ones who weren’t there two years ago picked up on the excitement,” Big Macs coach Dave Derrico told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review earlier this week. “We’ve been trying to keep them focused on one game at a time, but it’s hard not to look ahead.”

Winning a PIAA trophy have been a driving force for five talented seniors who played in Hershey two years ago — captains Sabrina Bryan (Hofstra recruit), Aideen O’Donoghue (Pitt), Isabel Scheidenhelm and Cheyenne Trest and goalkeeper Megan Virgin (Long Island).

“I chose those four as captains for that reason; they did have the vision and experience,” Derrico said. “Those four led the team. They wanted another shot, and they got back to where they wanted to be. Hopefully, I’ve learned something in two years, too.”

It’s the first championship appearance for the Titans, who edged Manheim Township, 1-0, with a goal late in regulation in the PIAA semifinals.  It appears that they have a big, physical back line with defense that hasn’t surrendered many goals in the postseason.

This looks like it will be a good match-up between a team that has been shutting down its opposition (CB-South) and a dynamic Big Mac attack that features Bryan at the top, and the versatility of O’Donoghue, who spent time at U.S. Women’s National Team camp earlier in the year as a defender.


I had an opportunity to interview O’Donoghue, after she announced that she was going to be committing to the University of Pittsburgh on the Pittsburgh College Soccer Show, you can listen here — beginning at the 18:30 mark of the show.


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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