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WPIAL Soccer Watch (9/14/2023): South Fayette ends Moon girls’ impressive unbeaten streak

File Photo courtesy Matt Ralph


Thursday, September 14, 2023 

If you have any updates to provide, please share on Twitter using #WPIALSoccer and/or include Pittsburgh Soccer Now’s Twitter handle @pghsoccernow.

For the 2023 High School soccer season, we will be using this forum to preview upcoming matches, share news and information and also share more from coaches and players, followed by a final WPIAL Scoreboard to post later that evening or early the following morning.

Coming off back-to-back WPIAL and PIAA titles, Bill Pfeifer’s Moon girls squad have suddenly come back to earth a bit in week four of this new season.

The Tigers won the Class 3A state title in 2021 and the 4A crown in 2022 bringing their total of PIAA championships to six overall, posting a remarkable 44-1-1 record in the previous two seasons, including a pair of wins in much anticipated showdowns against an equally talented Mars squad in the WPIAL and PIAA playoffs last season.

“I think people want to beat Moon,” Pfeifer told Pittsburgh Union Progress earlier this year. “It’s just like people want to beat Mars. There’s always somebody, and right now that cycles through [Moon].”

Moon entered the 2023 campaign with continued hype but also with a big target on its backs, even as they graduated many key players from the repeat championship squad, namely Hailey Longwell, the 2022 Moe Rosensteel Award winner.  The program earned a No. 2-ranking in the nation as part of the United Soccer Coaches girls high school preseason rankings.

After starting this season with five straight wins, to extend its unbeaten streak to 47 matches, Moon ran into a pair of determined section opponents this week in Montour and South Fayette.

On Monday, the Spartans and Tigers played to a scoreless draw.

And on Wednesday, the Lions were the first team since September 2021 to defeat the Tigers, by a 1-0 score line. South Fayette’s Alex Delaney scored the match’s lone goal, with Julianna Rossi picking up the assist, while goalkeeper Caitlyn Thompson picked up the clean sheet.

“It was a well-played game on both sides. The game could have gone either way,” South Fayette’s Head Coach, Nick Rosser told Pittsburgh Soccer Now.

“I was very happy with the win, and so proud of the girls.”

Moon’s last loss came when they competed in Class 4A,  losing 1-0, to Mt. Lebanon.

With this week’s result, the standings in Girls 3A have shifted considerably, as Montour (3-0-1 in section) stands in first place, while Moon (3-1-0 in section) drops to second.   South Fayette improve to 2-2 in section and 3-4-1 overall.

Meanwhile, the other traditional powerhouse program in Girls 3A, Mars remains unbeaten with a 6-0 record, as the Planets biggest test came earlier in the week when neighboring Class 2A North Catholic battled them in a 1-0 contest.  North Catholic will likely be a contender in Class 2A once again this season, as they’re only other loss this season came to section rival  and two-time defending WPIAL Class 2A champs, Avonworth, 3-2 in Extra Time.

On Thursday night, the attention shifts to the boys side, with a full schedule on tap.

We have the full schedule below.


Class 4A

Section 1 (4A)
7:00pm Central Catholic at North Allegheny
8:00pm Fox Chapel at Butler
7:30pm North Hills at Pine-Richland
7:30pm Shaler at Seneca Valley
Section 2 (4A)
3:30pm Canon-McMillan at Allderdice
7:30pm Hempfield at Baldwin
7:30pm Mt. Lebanon at Norwin
7:45pm Upper St. Clair at Peters Township

Class 3A

Section 1 (3A)
7:00pm Armstrong at Hampton
7:00pm Mars at Kiski Area
3:30pm North Catholic at Highlands
Section 2 (3A)
7:30pm Central Valley at Blackhawk
7:30pm Chartiers Valley at Ambridge
7:30pm Montour at Moon
Section 3 (3A)
7:30pm Connellsville at Bethel Park
7:30pm Laurel Highlands at Albert Gallatin
7:30pm Ringgold at Thomas Jefferson
7:30pm Uniontown at Trinity
Section 4 (3A)
7:30pm Latrobe at Gateway
7:30pm McKeesport at Franklin Regional
7:30pm Obama Academy at Penn Hills
7:30pm Plum at Penn-Trafford

Class 2A

Section 1 (2A)
7:30pm Keystone Oaks at East Allegheny
7:00pm South Allegheny at South Park
6:00pm West Mifflin at Steel Valley
7:30pm Woodland Hills at Elizabeth Forward
Section 2 (2A)
6:00pm Freeport at Derry Area
7:30pm Greensburg Salem at Deer Lakes
6:30pm Jeannette at Shady Side Academy
7:00pm Knoch at Leechburg
Section 3 (2A)
7:00pm McGuffey at Brownsville
7:30pm Mount Pleasant at Belle Vernon
7:00pm Southmoreland at Washington
7:30pm Yough at Waynesburg Central
Section 4 (2A)
7:30pm Avonworth at Beaver Area
7:30pm Hopewell at Quaker Valley
6:30pm Riverside at Ellwood City

Class 1A

Section 1 (1A)
4:00pm Beaver County Christian at Eden Christian
4:00pm Sewickley Academy at Neshannock
7:00pm South Side Beaver at Freedom
Section 2 (1A)
7:00pm Bentworth at Beth-Center
7:00pm Greensburg Central Catholic at Charleroi
6:00pm Ligonier Valley at California
Section 3 (1A)
7:00pm Aquinas Academy at Burrell
4:00pm Trinity Christian at St. Joseph
4:00pm Winchester Thurston at Riverview
Section 4 (1A)
4:00pm Brentwood at Bishop Canevin
7:00pm Serra Catholic at Chartiers-Houston
7:00pm Seton LaSalle at Carlynton
Non Section
7:30pm Springdale (1A) at Indiana (2A)

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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