The WPIAL Boys Soccer playoffs begin Saturday afternoon, as both Class 1A and 3A will kickoff their respective tournaments with first round action.
In Class 1A, Charleroi, last year’s runner-up, are the top seed in this year’s tournament, and could be looked at as the prohibitive favorite, as they’ve yet to lose a match this season.
Looking around at the rest of the field, each remaining section
On Wednesday, after the brackets were released, we had Charleroi’s Head Coach Jon Ducoli on the Kids on the Pitch Podcast.
WPIAL Boys Soccer Class 1A – First Round Schedule (Saturday, October 21, 2023)
|1:00pm||16 Beaver County Christian at 1 Charleroi|
|Top-seeded Charleroi appear to be a team on a mission this season.
With balanced scoring and 10 clean sheets, the Cougars don’t rely too much on any one player — the sign of a strong program with a deep roster. Four of the Cougars’ wins came against teams in larger classifications.
BCC have shown they’ve been tough to score against, allowing just 20 goals all season, and playing many tight contests including four matches against playoff bound teams that went to extra time.
|1:00pm||11 Trinity Christian at 6 Serra Catholic|
|This could be a low-scoring, tight affair.
It’s been an excellent season for Serra Catholic, who ended up tied for first in their section with Seton LaSalle. They’ve surrendered just six goals all season, and only three in section competition
Trinity Christian has won three of its last four, including an impressive 6-1 non-section triumph over Greensburg Central Catholic.
|1:00pm||15 Bishop Canevin at 2 Sewickley Academy (at Montour)|
|Sewickley Academy is in a familiar place, even with a new coach, Joel Stewart, as a Section champion and very high seeding. This season they won a very tough Section battle, finishing ahead of Eden Christian — a team they drew and lost to — by a half game. The two teams met earlier this season, with Sewickley coming away with a 4-1 win. Bishop Canevin struggled against the top teams in section this season, but they did play a strong schedule, which could help prepare them for the playoffs.|
|1:00pm||14 Greensburg Central Catholic at 3 Burrell|
|This is not a misprint, GCC and Burrell are programs in different directions this season. Burrell had a terrific regular season, ending up as co-Champions in its section with Springdale, while GCC, last year’s top seed, navigated through a tougher campaign, but qualified for the playoffs this year nonetheless. Despite winning 11 in a row through the season, the Bucs finished the season with two losses, including its last section contest to last year’s defending Champions, Winchester Thurston.|
|1:00pm||8 Eden Christian at 9 Winchester Thurston (at Moon)|
|It probably doesn’t get better than this for an 8-9 match-up, as the defending champion Bears are starting to show they will be a tough out again, winning four in a row, including the section/season finale win vs Burrell. Eden Christian, despite one early season loss to OLSH, would not lose the rest of the way in section play, and only other losses are out of section (Seton LaSalle and 2A Avonworth).|
|1:00pm||12 Carlynton at 5 Springdale (at Plum)|
|Here’s a match up of two Class 1A schools that always seem to make the postseason tournament. Springdale won a share of its section title, having won six of its last seven matches.
Carlynton’s four section losses came against the co-champions in Section 4, and they’ve posted a plus-17 goal differential this season.
|3:00pm||10 Our Lady of Sacred Heart at 7 Bentworth (at South Fayette)|
|OLSH has its share of solid results against some of the top teams in this classification, while the same can be said of Bentworth, who gave Charleroi all it could handle in both matches this season.|
|13 Beth-Center at 4 Seton LaSalle
Sharing a section title with Serra Catholic, Seton LaSalle is also another team that stifles its opponents, as at one point this season went nine matches without giving up a goal.
Beth-Center faired very well against non-section competition (posting 11-7-0 overall record), with a goal differential of plus-27.
Boys 1A Playoff Schedule
- 1st Round: Saturday, October 21 (at highest seed)
- Quarterfinal Round Wednesday, October 25 (at highest seed)
- Semifinal Round Monday, October 30 (TBA)
- Finals TBA (at Highmark Stadium)