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WPIAL Girls Soccer Playoffs: Taking a closer look at Class 3A and 2A semifinal round

File Photo courtesy of Ed Thompson

The WPIAL Girls soccer playoffs jump back into action on Wednesday, with the Class 3A and 2A semifinal round.

All games kickoff at 6:30 p.m.  Here’s a closer look at each match.

Class 3A

#1 Mars vs #13 Montour

Mars is loaded with talent, Ellie Coffield (Pitt), Gracie Dunaway (Purdue), Corline Wrobleski, Leana Cuzzocera and keeper Courtney Lisman and a cast of others.

They are one win away from the right to defend their WPIAL title. A stretch that has seen them go 37 games without a loss. Everyone loves the Cinderella story and based on the seeding Montour is Cinderella. Despite the seeding Montour is also a section foe and dropped their two matches against Mars this season (7-1 and 10-1).

Montour though has not blinked, in its first-round playoff encounter with fourth seeded Connellsville, who did not give up a goal the entire season, they rolled to a 4-1 win. Then they took down Franklin Regional 1-0.

Is the clock getting closer to midnight for Cinderella or…  Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo there is some more magic in those shoes?

#2 Plum vs #6 West Allegheny
Plum is one step from getting back to the WPIAL finals, a mission they have been taking on since last season when they came up short against Mars.
To get back to the finals they will call on Kaitlyn Killinger, Gina Proviano and Jamie Seneca (Gannon) to continue filling the back of the net.
The Mustangs have scored 10 goals over the last two games and given up zero.
West Allegheny is just as capable of finding the net. Also scoring 10 goals over the last two games they will be a formidable opponent for Plum. West Allegheny lead by Mackenzie Evers (Pitt), Morgan Shansky (Akron) and Mackenzie Taranto (Duquesne) are looking to be the spoiler in the Mustangs return.

Class 2A

#5 Avonworth vs #9 Yough
Avonworth comes into the semifinals off a win that saw Ava Wert earn a hat-trick. Wert is a club goalie who doubles as a high school goal scorer. Avonworth does a great job possessing and moving the ball.

Yough will challenge that possession. The Cougars coming off the upset win over top-seeded South Park, seem to be building momentum as the playoffs continue. This is a team with speed that will test Avonworth.

This should be a very entertaining game .

#2 Shady Side Academy vs #3 North Catholic

Shady Side Academy got a late start to the season but once they got started, it was business as usual for the former Class 1A powerhouse.

Shady Side who has kept a clean sheet throughout these playoffs, will call on Emory Anderson, Gabby Hill-Junke and Melissa Riggins (Georgetown) to keep the ball away from a North Catholic team that can score.

North Catholic led by Jayden Sharpless (Georgia State) whose game winner clinched the Trojans WPIAL Championship last year, will look to hand Shady Side their first loss and get back to a second straight final. Sharpless will look for help from GK Andre Bean, Grace Billman and Lindsay Pawlawski

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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