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PIAA Soccer Championship Friday: Moon girls conquer the state again with 2nd half comeback

Photo courtesy Matt Ralph

PIAA Boys and Girls Soccer Championship Friday

FINAL: Girls Class 1A:  Southern Columbia 5, Freedom 3
FINAL: Boys Class 1A: Moravian Academy 2, Winchester Thurston 1, AET2
FINAL: Girls Class 3A:  Moon 2, UP 1

Friday, November 18, 2022  |  Eagle View Middle School Complex, Mechanicsburg, PA

PIAA Championship Friday Updates

GIRLS CLASS 3A: MOON vs UPPER PERKIOMEN

The Moon Tigers capped a remarkable season by storming back in the second half with goals from Hailey Longwell and Sydney Felton to capture their second straight PIAA Girls Soccer title, and their fourth in the last seven years, by defeating Upper Perkiomen, 2-1, at Eagle View Complex in Mechanicsburg on Friday evening.

Trailing 1-0, in the second half, the Tigers found goals from its leading scorer, Hailey Longwell, who headed in a long free kick (see video below) and from Sydney Felton, who came close numerous times, but finally pull through with the game winner.

Matt Ralph Photo Gallery (GIrls 3A Final) 

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Next up…    Moon goes for the perfect season against Upper Perkiomen!  4 p.m. kickoff!


FINAL: BOYS 1A – MORAVIAN ACADEMY 2, WINCHESTER THURSTON 1 (AET2)

FINAL: SOUTHERN COLUMBIA 5, FREEDOM 3

“I told the girls just to be proud we were here,” Freedom coach Colin Williams said after the match.

“It just got to be too much for some of the younger players. … I would have liked a little more consistency for us. We gave the ball up a little more than I would have liked, but none of that takes away from the year they had. Still a young team.”

It’s a super quick turnaround for all of the teams playing on Friday, as the three sides from the WPIAL will face some tough challenges.

Look for match updates to be posted here throughout the day for all of the WPIAL-related matches.

In addition, Pittsburgh Soccer Now Eastern PA contributor, Matt Ralph will be in Mechanicsburg for the Friday games.  We’ll be posting his updates / photos here on the Championship Friday blog.


Match Capsules

Girls Class 1A: Freedom vs South Columbia 

Freedom has been here before, when their splendid 2018 squad made it all the way to Hershey, and came up short in its best previous chance to capture a State title. Leading the way for the Bulldogs, is Shaye Bailey, who’s come up big in the postseason.  She had a hat trick in the PIAA semifinal win against WPIAL foe Greensburg Central Catholic, who they also beat in the District semifinal round too.

This year, Colin Williams returns to the PIAA Final with an explosive unit that will once again take on Southern Columbia.

Southern Columbia has ruled Class 1A girls soccer, taking the last three titles, including an impressive 4-0 win against GCC last season.

Freedom dominates Springdale, 3-0, to win WPIAL 1A Girls Championship

1 p.m. – Boys Class 1A – Winchester Thurston vs Moravain Academy 

The Bears are back in the State Championship game, and looking for back-to-back titles.  In the semifinals Wednesday, Tomer Tuti and Alex Hauskrecht scored in a 2-0 victory over District 5 champion McConnellsburg.

Last year, Winchester Thurston came through with a thrilling extra time game winner from Oliver Daboo, who also has come up with clutch goals in this postseason too, as the Bears captured the WPIAL title against a tough fight from Charleroi.

It should be another tough State Final for the Bears, as Moravian Academy is a program that’s also been to this point. They won titles twice in the last decade (2014, 2019).

The Lions have won 10 straight District 11 titles.

To get to the Final, the Lions knocked off last year’s runner up, Faith Christian, with goals coming from Saleem Diakite, with the Extra Time game winner and from Selman Eris in regulation.

Moravian Academy won titles in 2019 and ‘14. The team reached the state semifinals last season and went 18-4. The Lions have won 10 straight District 11 titles.

The Bear Necessities: RDA duo lead Winchester Thurston to Boys 1A repeat

PIAA Soccer Championship Saturday: Winchester Thurston and Hampton boys, and Mars girls capture State titles

4 p.m. – Girls Class 3A – Moon vs Upper Perkiomen

Will Moon meet its match in the PIAA Final when finally stepping out of the WPIAL competition? The Tigers have the benefit of not having to travel too far in the PIAA tournament, as they’ve beaten all teams from District 7 after winning the WPIAL title.

Moon defeated Latrobe, 2-0; Plum, 4-1; and of course, taking the anticipated rematch vs Mars, 2-0

Maybe the biggest challenge for Moon will be, can they recover quick enough and be able to refocus quickly after a grinding and physical match vs Mars.

The Tigers are seeking its fifth PIAA title and fourth since 2016, all under the direction of Head Coach Bill Pfeifer.

The PIAA’s defending Class 4A champions, led by Hailey Longwell’s 35 goals, a staunch back line and midfield that has dominated the competition by surrendering only two goals all season, are looking to make their step-down season to Class 3A a perfect one, as they could finish the season unbeaten and untied. They’re also on a 36-game win streak that stretches back to early 2021.

Upper Perkomen have not lost this season. In the PIAA tournament, they beat Northern, 3-1; Valley View, 6-0; and Greencastle-Antrim, 3-0.   Upper Perkiomen are new to the PIAA Finals, but they continue a streak for District 1, as this is the ninth straight season that a team from that area has made it to the 3A Girls Final.

It’s been a season of firsts for UP, as they captured Pioneer Athletic Conference and District 1 Class 3A titles.

Junior forward Sarah Fisher was an all-state selection a year ago. Senior forward Sara Edwards has scored 36 goals to lead the team. Edwards tallied twice and Morgan Sweed also scored in the semifinals. Upper Perkiomen’s only non-win was a draw vs Spring-Ford on Sept. 28.

Longwell’s brace, Leech’s brilliance send Moon over Mars, 2-0, to return to PIAA Final


A New Site?  More on Eagle VIew Middle School

Here are some facts and figures on the new championship site.

Location: Eagle View Middle School is about 200 miles east of Pittsburgh via the Turnpike. It is 32 miles west of HersheyPark Stadium.

Stadium opened: 2009

Capacity: Approximately 1,200, with seating on one side only

Surface: FieldTurf

Parking: Several lots, including two main lots in front of the middle school

Concessions: Yes

Locker rooms: Yes. They are larger than the locker rooms at HersheyPark Stadium.

Tickets: $8, online only via Hometown Ticketing (Go to PIAA.org, sports, soccer, get championship tickets).

Press box: Yes, but it is smaller than HersheyPark Stadium. Overflow media will also have tables from which to work on the sidelines. PCN will broadcast as usual.

PItt MF Michael Sullivan

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