A-K Valley High School Notebook: Knoch’s Greb tops teammate Bauer for second sectional title

Thursday, September 12, 2019 | 7:38 PM

For the second straight year, the Section 3-AA girls tennis singles championship had two teammates playing for a sectional crown. Knoch coach Nance Conlon said the score didn’t indicate the type of competitive match it was, but for the second year in a row, Laura Greb beat Brooke Bauer in straight sets, 6-0, 6-1.

“It was really exciting,” Conlon said. “Laura was just on. Brooke was in every play, every point. I told them at the end, ‘I wish you guys would have seen it because it was that exciting.’”

The pair of Knoch players have played against each other in practice and in tournaments for the past few years but the feeling still hasn’t changed when they play in a competitive enviornment.

“I would say that’s its more nerve wracking than fun because we are good friends outside of tennis too,” Greb said.

Now, both Greb and Bauer will head onto the WPIAL Class AA singles tournament along with Isabella Lane from Burrell and Amber Sterrett from Derry. Greb said winning her second straight sectional singles title can only help her going into next week.

“I definitely think it helps with my confidence going into WPIAL’s next week,” Greb said. “I think that if I go into next week with the right mindset I can hopefully play well.”

In Section 3-AAA, Fox Chapel’s Charlotte James bounced back from a semifinal tiebreaker loss to Bethel Park’s Mia Gorman on Thursday. She defeated Shady Side Academy’s Ella Santora 6-2, 6-3, to earn third-place honors.

Kiski Invitational at Northmoreland Park

Teams from around the area will flock to Northmoreland Park on Friday to compete in the Kiski Area Cross Country Invitational. A-K Valley teams such as Apollo-Ridge, Fox Chapel, Freeport, Highlands, Knoch, Plum and Riverview will be competing throughout the morning as they look to improve their times in a high-level race.

Fox Chapel and Riverview are two teams that have had success early in the cross country season. Riverview’s Mason Ochs won the Class A race at the Red, White and Blue Classic at Schenley Park with a personal best time of 16 minutes, 44.32 seconds.

The Fox Chapel boys and girls teams swept the Gateway Invitational at the beginning of the season. Be on the lookout for runners such as Knoch’s Sammy Jo Barnes, Fox Chapel’s Christian Fitch, Highland’s CJ Thimons, Plum’s Angela Valotta and Kiski Area’s Josie Plazio as they could all be in the mix.

The boys varsity race is set to begin at 9:30 a.m. with the varsity girls following about 30 minutes later.

Off to the links

Golfers from around the A-K Valley will take to the links early next week in an attempt to qualify for the WPIAL Individual tournaments at the end of the month. The boys will be in action on Monday and the girls will play on Wednesday.

For Class AA boys qualifiers, players from Riverview, Burrell, Freeport, Leechburg, Valley and St. Joseph will play at Buffalo Golf Course. Players from Deer Lakes will head to Pheasant Ridge. Both qualifiers start at 10 a.m.

In AAA, Kiski Area, Highlands and Knoch will play at Suncrest Golf Course at 10 a.m. Section 4-AAA competitors Fox Chapel and Plum will head to Meadowink Golf Course for an 8 a.m. start.

On the girls side, players from Fox Chapel and Kiski will travel to Hiland Golf Course for a 10 a.m. start on Wednesday.

Fox Chapel’s Scott Bitar will be the player to watch heading into the WPIAL individual tournament. He’s been at the forefront for the Foxes all season and placed sixth at Oakmont last year, one stroke ahead of teammate Aiden Oerhle, who will be gunning for another shot as well.

Other players to watch are Riverview’s Jack Harden, Leechburg’s Cole Villa, and Burrell’s Marcus Pinchok and Knoch’s Cory Voltz.

Greg Macafee is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Greg by email at gmacafee@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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