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WPIAL Soccer Finals Super Saturday: Seneca Valley sweeps 4A, Shady Side repeats & Freedom rolls

Follow along here for updates from all Saturday's action in WPIAL finals from Highmark Stadium

WPIAL Soccer Finals Super Saturday (Girls 1A, Boys 2A, Girls 4A & Boys 4A)

Saturday, November 3- Highmark Stadium

1A GIRLS: Freedom 8. Bentworth 2  FINAL (Recap) 

2A BOYS:   Shady Side Academy 1, Quaker Valley 1. (SSA wins PKs 3-0) FINAL (Recap)

4A GIRLS: Seneca Valley 2, Peters Township 1, OT FINAL (Recap)

4A BOYS: Seneca Valley 5, Norwin 2, FINAL


7:59 – It’s over – SENECA VALLEY wins WPIAL BOYS 4A title for the first time in school history with a commanding 5-2 result.

Post-game reaction to follow as we’re finally done after four games here at Highmark Stadium!

7:56 – GOAL NORWIN – Seneca Valley lead cut to 5-2.

Jake Nebinski with the shot from left side.

7:43 – Kudos to Norwin. They came close to making it 5-2.

Norwin awarded a rare indirect kick inside the left side of box.

Well executed play — with Carter Breen drilling a shot after quick touch pass from one player on wall over ball. Hits crossbar, but unlike Rupert’s goal, it bounced out & cleared away


Kamden Koziak with a nice cut back in the box, then left footed finish. Raiders in total control now, up 5-1.  (62′)

7:27 – GOAL – SENECA VALLEY now lead NORWIN 4-1, 50′

Adds to lead as Luke Rupert scores his second of the night — hitting it under crossbar from 18 yards out – and it bounces in.
Raiders now in command, with 4-1 lead.


6:39 – GOAL – SENECA responds immediately — it’s now 3-1.

6:38 – GOAL – NORWIN – Carter Breen cuts the lead in half, 2-1 Seneca now lead.

6:16 – GOAL – SENECA VALLEY – Luke Rupert from close range buries it. 1-0 Raiders lead Norwin.

6:15 – Boys 4A final – between Seneca Valley and Norwin has kicked off.


Wins WPIAL title — on corner kick

Lauren Sileo got to it first deep inside the six — to knock it in with her body less than two mins into the first period of extra time
Seneca beats Peters Twp 2-1 in OT.

5:44 – GOAL – SENECA VALLEY ties it, 1-1, with only :03 seconds left, gets the game tying goal from Breana Valentovish — after free kick was deflected.

5:20 – Second half — still 1-0 PT.

Almost doubled the lead as nice build-up into the box, including a nutmeg of Seneca defender, ended with a shot from Sarah Heisinger that was saved by Seneca GK Morgan Sinan

4:40 – GOAL – Peters Township, 1-0.

With just a few minutes before the half, Peters’ Freshman Casey Breier breaks through on the left side to beat Seneca’s GK Morgan Sinan 36′

4:35 – back and forth between PT and Seneca, but no goals yet.

Peters Twp ‘s goal keeper Emma Sawich has been the busier keeper, with a few nice stops.

4:15 – We’re now a little behind schedule. Peters Twp and Seneca Valley girls kickoff the Girls 4A final. Seneca in black, Peters in white tops with red shorts.

3:45 – INCREDIBLE! SSA wins PKs in just three rounds, as GK Bruce David saves all three of Quaker Valley’s attempts!

Here’s the clincher…


3:35 – We’re going to PKs!

3:19 – First OT finally ends — and still 1-1.

3:10 – hard collision on QV corner. Player from each team down for significant time. QV’s Thomas Guild comes off, but SSA player had to be carted off. Lets hope he’s okay.


2:49 – SSA does it again!!! Ties match. It’s 1-1.

Score off free kick with 37 seconds left!

Kenny Shergill with the tally. INCREDIBLE stuff.

2:01 – HALF

Shady Side hanging in there after giving up early goal. QV had two or three more chances in the box with the ball bouncing around in dangerous spots, but each time SSA are able to clear.

1:20 – Quaker Valley scores early — in the first minute of the match to take lead on Shady Side Academy.  Dom Reiter with the goal.

1:15 – SSA vs Quaker Valley for the third year in a row, will start on time to decide Boys 2A champion.


1:00 – In the early game, Freedom rolled to a 8-2 win over Bentworth.

Logan Carney provided our coverage.




John Krysinsky – reporting

Logan Carney – reporting

Ed Thompson – photography

There was a time when all of the WPIAL soccer finals were all played on one day — and at one location (Elizabeth Forward for many years prior to moving to Highmark Stadium). Of course, that was when there were only four or five classifications.

Times have changed. We now have eight classifications (four boys and four girls) and we now have Highmark Stadium providing a scenic setting on the first weekend of November for Western PA’s best high school teams to compete for the glory of lifting a WPIAL championship trophy.

See the full list of all past WPIAL soccer champions here.


Follow along right here after the first game kicks off.



Freedom (19-1) vs. Bentworth (17-2)

  • This will be the first time since the inception of WPIAL Class 1A classification in 2009, that either Shady Side Academy or Greensburg Central Catholic will take the crown.
  • Both of these teams eliminated the perennial powers in the semifinals.
  • WPIAL’s 2A champs in 2016, Freedom actually dropped down in classification this year, and have rolled through the competition.
  • Against Shady Side,
  • While just a freshman, Jayden Sharpless has led all girls in goal scoring in the WPIAL this season with 50. Oh, and by the way, she’s accompanied by two senior Division I recruits: Michaela Watkins (Youngstown St.) and sister Myla Sharpless. Older sister Myla suffered a torn ACL last season and returned just in time for this year’s playoff run.
  • Bentworth can score as well. Jocelyn Timlin, scored 41 goals in the regular season. Teammate Paige Marshalek was seventh in scoring with 31 goals.

“It feels really special,” said Bentworth coach Tyler Hamstra told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette this week. “We had a lot of teams that were on the bubble. I think this team was able to just grind it out. They didn’t think that was beneath them. The girls were willing to do whatever role to get the job done.”


Quaker Valley (18-3-0) vs. Shady Side Academy (11-6-1)

  • This is becoming WPIAL soccer’s version of Warriors-Cavaliers.
  • These are two programs that know each other pretty well as this will the the third straight year they’ll meet in the 2A final.
  • Last year’s clash at Highmark was an instant classic. Shady Side rallied from 2-1 deficit scoring once late in regulation on a long throw and bicycle kick, then again in OT on a long throw. You can see our full game report from that wild match. Of course Quaker Valley would get them back in the PIAA tournament, and would eventually win States.
  • I think most 2A teams should know to never count out Ed Ellsworth‘s Shady Side teams. Again this year, they finished in the middle of the pack and received a lower seed, but again are one game away from the WPIAL final. The Indians return a number of players that were instrumental on the 2017 WPIAL title run, including Wally Navid. Coach Ed Ellsworth has brought back eleven seniors from that squad including some of the heroes from WPIAL winning team Max Farner, Gunnar Pipitone and Adrian Beckford.
  • Ellsworth will do some unconventional things, but still produces results. He’s been known to sub goalkeepers in and out of games, and did that in its 1-0 semifinal win vs section rivals Deer Lakes, and other times this season. It was Farner who had the improbable game winner — a toe poke — that somehow crossed the goal line in the semifinal.
  • Since losing in the WPIAL final last season against Shady Side, Quaker Valley has not lost to another 2A team. The Quakers rolled to a PIAA title in 2017, then after starting the 2018 season 0-3 against non-conference opponents in higher classifications, they have not lost in its past 17 games, surrendering only five goals in this span.
  • The Quakers, coached by former Riverhounds defender, Andrew Marshall, have five double-digit goal scorers, three players with double-digit assists and goalkeeper Dom Lagnese has been strong all season in between the posts.
  • Quaker Valley didn’t have much of a challenge from previously unbeaten Charleroi in the semifinal, winning 5-0, and even shutting the WPIAL’s top goal scorer, Cullin Woytovich, who scored 46 goals in the regular season.


Seneca Valley (15-2) vs Peters Township (16-3)

  • Top-seeded Seneca Valley was held scoreless in the first half of its 2-0 semifinal win against Upper St. Clair, but then scored two quick goals from Mia Zec and Lauren Sileo. That appears to be their mojo. In the quarterfinal, they broke open a tight contest with Mt. Lebanon with five second half goals from Breanna Valentovish, Ashley Rea, Sileo, Julia Redilla, Ally Smith and Zec.
  • Seneca Valley are seeking its first WPIAL title since 2014. Upper St. Clair have been a perennial contender, last playing in the WPIAL finals in 2015, and winning the PIAA that same year.
  • On the Peters’ side, there are two players heading to play for Division I schools: Regan LaVigna, a Youngstown State recruit, has scored 18 goals this season and junior Hannah Stuck, a Bucknell recruit has 15 goals.
  • LaVigna sat our Seneca’s win in the semifinal last Saturday, due to an apparent leg injury. Her status is uncertain for this game.
  • Peters Township is back in the semifinals for the first time since making the Class 3A final four in 2013.
  • Four-time WPIAL champions — the Raiders won it last in 2014.


Seneca Valley (15-2-1) vs Norwin

  • Two years ago, Seneca Valley had its first-ever WPIAL title within its grasp, but lost a heart breaker to North Allegheny. Canon-McMillan haven’t been to the WPIAL finals since 2015, when they beat Fox Chapel in OT.
  • Seneca Valley won a very competitive Section 1, and have handled business thus far in the playoffs without a difficult challenge, earning a first-round bye, then beat Mt. Lebanon 7-0 in last week’s quarterfinal, then had to hold off Canon-McMillan in a 3-2 win.
  • For seven years, Norwin made the playoffs, and for seven years, they couldn’t win a playoff game. They finally broke the streak this year, and now find themselves on the verge of a berth in the finals after a 2-1 win over No. 7 Peters Township in the quarterfinals after a first-round bye.
  • Norwin’s go-to player is Carter Breen who has scored 32 goals this season.

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).

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