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FINAL: Norwin 1, Neshaminy 0 – Knights capture elusive PIAA title, 1st since 1996


Norwin 1, Neshaminy 0 

It wasn’t just a legendary season — it’s been legendary run for the Norwin girls soccer team – as they capped off the 2017 campaign with an exhilarating 1-0 win over Nashaminy to capture its first state title since 1996, and second overall.
In a match that was scoreless in the 73rd minute, the Knights capitalized on a corner kick from Alyssa Victor — as Dani Iannuzzo’s goal was the difference in a tightly contested match. 
Senior goalkeeper Sam Wexell came up with some big saves in the match to post her 53rd career shutout, including a quick reaction punch out of shot heading under the crossbar in the 79th minute.
Head coach Lauren Karcher‘s team captured back-to-back WPIAL titles in 2015 and 2016, and only lost four games in the past three seasons.
photo credit – Bill Beckner / Twitter 


5:51 p.m. – FINAL SCORE – Norwin 1, Neshaminy 0

5:50 p.m. – it’s over — Norwin wins first PIAA title (in any sport) since 1996.
5:47 p.m. — Knights holding on…

5:38 p.m. – GOOAAALLLLL Norwin 1, Neshaminy 0
Alyssa Victor corner kick to Dani Iannuzzo, who scores in the 73rd minute.
A couple of terrific saves by Knights GK Sam Wexell the difference
4:38 p.m. – About 20 minutes into the match — Norwin 0 Neshaminy 0

4:10 p.m. – the teams have kicked off


Norwin’s core group of players that won consecutive WPIAL 4A titles in 2015 and 2016, have had a dominant run in the past three years but one trophy has eluded them — a PIAA state championship.
In each of the past two seasons the Knights were upset in the PIAA playoffs by WPIAL counterparts who would go on to win the state title, first Upper St. Clair in 2015, then Canon-McMillan in 2016. If Norwin would win the 4A title, it would continue dominance by Western PA’s girls teams and it would be the second time WPIAL teams will have won three consecutive girls titles at the top classification. Peters Township did it from 2010 through 2012 (thanks to a few folks for correcting me on this!). Mars, Moon and Central Valley won consecutive titles in 2011-13 in 2A classification. Norwin has one PIAA title once, in 1996, when assistant coach Leslie (Fedorka) Kaminski was part of the team.
This is their first trip to Hershey with this group led by talented, Division I bound seniors Emily HarriganAlyssa Victor and goalkeeper Sam Wexell.
Harrigan (Rutgers University commit), a forward, now owns Norwin’s career goal record with 93 goals, while goalkeeper Wexell (Ohio University commit) now holds the school’s career shutout record at 52. Only section and neighboring rivals and WPIAL champions Penn-Trafford have been able to get the best of the Knights this season. Otherwise, Norwin’s three year run has been most impressive, with only four losses (aforementioned two to Penn-Trafford this year, and the other two in PIAA semifinals vs USC and Canon-Mac).
Neshaminy has won 12 of its last 13 games, winning three consecutive games by 2-1 margins to reach the championship game for the first time since winning the whole thing in 2013.
Junior forward Brooke Mullin and sophomore forward Kristin Curley lead the team with nine goals each while senior midfielder Jackie Ziegler has eight goals and 17 assists.
In goal, junior Riley Spingler has taken over as the main keeper for the last 10 games, posting three shutouts.
WHAT:    PIAA Girls 4A Soccer Championship
WHO:       Norwin (20-2-1) vs Neshaminy (19-6-1)
WHERE:  Hershey Park Stadium, Hershey, PA
WHEN:    Friday, November 17, 4 p.m.
Broadcast LIVE on PCN (check your provider listings) and the PCN Select app

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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