Author: James Dotson


Kiski’s bench celebrates after scoring against Indiana during a PIHL Class A quarterfinal March, 10, 2020 at RMU Island Sports Center.
Kiski Area hockey writes remarkable turnaround tale
March 11, 2020
The Kiski Area hockey team wrote one of the bigger turnaround stories in high school sports in quite some time.

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Indiana’s Ben Nettleton (20) celebrates after scoring against Kiski during a PIHL Class A quarterfinal March, 10, 2020 at RMU Island Sports Center.
Indiana rallies in third period to end Kiski Area’s dream season in PIHL semifinals
March 10, 2020
It’s difficult to beat a team three times in a season, as Indiana’s hockey team proved in the PIHL Penguins Cup semifinals Tuesday night.

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Sharon and Aliquippa boys basketball teams tip off in the PIAA playoffs March 7, 2020, at Farrell.
Aliquippa rallies past Sharon in PIAA 1st round
March 7, 2020
Basketball is a game of adjustments. Usually, the team that makes the right in-game adjustments will be the team that ends the game victorious.

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New Castle defenders compete against Hickory on March 6, 2020, at Slippery Rock.
Hickory ousts New Castle from PIAA playoffs
March 6, 2020
One word kept sounding over a standing room only crowd at Slippery Rock University’s Morrow Field House on Friday night.

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Hempfield takes down Plum in overtime in PIHL Penguins Cup opening round
March 3, 2020
Hempfield kept firing shots at the net at Pittsburgh Ice Arena, but the Spartans could not get the rebounds and put back attempts in front of the net.

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Neshannock coach Mike Kirkwood celebrates his team’s win against Quaker Valley during the WPIAL Class AA Championship on Tuesday, May 26, 2015 at Consol Energy Park in Washington. Neshannock won 4-0.
Longtime Neshannock baseball coach Mike Kirkwood resigns
January 18, 2020
After 32 years, baseball is about to look very different in Lawrence County.

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North Allegheny High School cheerleaders compete in the WPIAL Spirit Championships at Hempfield High School on Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020.
Baldwin, South Park, Laurel win WPIAL spirit championships
January 4, 2020
The new year also marked the potential beginning of a new era for competitive cheer in Western Pennsylvania.

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Quaker Valley and New Castle boys basketball teams tip off in a section contest Jan. 3, 2020, at Quaker Valley.
Thiero’s 30 points guides No. 2 Quaker Valley past No. 5 New Castle
It did not take Quaker Valley long to say adieu to New Castle on Friday night.

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Brentwood’s Aiden Wardzinski runs against Neshannock during their WPIAL playoff game Nov. 8, 2019, at Freedom.
Brentwood defense denies Neshannock in Class 2A quarterfinal
November 9, 2019
Bend but don’t break.

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Springdale’s Christian Vokes attempts to cover Jeannette’s Stephan Twichell as he pulls in a touchdown pass in the second half at Springdale’s Veteran Memorial Stadium Friday, Sept 20, 2019.
Jeannette blanks Springdale in battle of unbeatens
September 20, 2019
Offense wins games, but defense wins championships.

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Shenango huddles against Western Beaver on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2019.
Turnovers fuel Shenango in victory over Western Beaver
September 8, 2019
Points off turnovers proved to be the difference in Shenango’s home opener Saturday at Glenn “Pop” John Stadium.

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Members of the Laurel football team prepare to play Rochester on Aug. 30, 2019.
Laurel’s defense, running game overwhelm Rochester
August 31, 2019
Championship football teams are often built around a solid running game or a stout defensive unit.

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Central Catholic defense strong in rout of York William Penn
August 24, 2019
After losing the final two games of the 2018 season, Central Catholic saw its 2019 season start off a little rocky. After a three-and-out to start the game Friday night, the Vikings gave up a long scoring drive to fall behind early.

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Union players practice Aug. 13, 2019.
Union small in numbers but big on talent
August 20, 2019
Another year, another common scenario for coach Stacy Robinson and the Union Scotties. One of the smallest schools in the WPIAL, Union had just 20 kids arrive for the first day of camp.

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Laurel football players huddle during practice Aug. 13, 2019.
Experienced Laurel motivated for big season
Ten starters back on offense. Nine starters back on defense. And a team that feels like it should have been in the postseason last year.

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Ellwood City football players warm up during practice Aug. 13, 2019.
Daily improvement, consistency are keys to success for Ellwood City
August 19, 2019
Four head coaches in four seasons can certainly lead to a lot of inconsistencies in a program.

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Shenango players huddle during practice Aug. 13, 2019.
Shenango roster young but experienced
A quality football team usually has a good combination of youth and experience on its roster. For Shenango, after a season where at times seven or more freshmen were starting, youth and experience come as a package deal.

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Riverside quarterback Ben Hughes throws a pass during practice on Thursday, Aug. 15, 2019.
Riverside to rely on veteran QB Ben Hughes
For most teams, a winning record and a trip to the playoffs would be seen as a successful season.

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Mohawk football players gather during practice Aug. 13, 2019.
New Mohawk starters carry torch into new season
Mohawk’s 2018 season was one of the best in program history.

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New Castle players practice Aug. 13, 2019.
McKnight moves to tailback to bolster New Castle running game
August 17, 2019
Most high school coaches would be excited to have a first-team all-conference quarterback returning behind center.

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Blackhawk’s Kristiana Bufalini pitches against Quaker Valley on April 17, 2019, at Blackhawk.
Quaker Valley takes down Blackhawk in Section 3-4A
April 18, 2019
Growing pains.

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Kiski’s bench celebrates after scoring against Indiana during a PIHL Class A quarterfinal March, 10, 2020 at RMU Island Sports Center.
Kiski Area hockey writes remarkable turnaround tale
March 11, 2020
The Kiski Area hockey team wrote one of the bigger turnaround stories in high school sports in quite some time.

Read More...

Indiana’s Ben Nettleton (20) celebrates after scoring against Kiski during a PIHL Class A quarterfinal March, 10, 2020 at RMU Island Sports Center.
Indiana rallies in third period to end Kiski Area’s dream season in PIHL semifinals
March 10, 2020
It’s difficult to beat a team three times in a season, as Indiana’s hockey team proved in the PIHL Penguins Cup semifinals Tuesday night.

Read More...

Sharon and Aliquippa boys basketball teams tip off in the PIAA playoffs March 7, 2020, at Farrell.
Aliquippa rallies past Sharon in PIAA 1st round
March 7, 2020
Basketball is a game of adjustments. Usually, the team that makes the right in-game adjustments will be the team that ends the game victorious.

Read More...

New Castle defenders compete against Hickory on March 6, 2020, at Slippery Rock.
Hickory ousts New Castle from PIAA playoffs
March 6, 2020
One word kept sounding over a standing room only crowd at Slippery Rock University’s Morrow Field House on Friday night.

Read More...

Hempfield takes down Plum in overtime in PIHL Penguins Cup opening round
March 3, 2020
Hempfield kept firing shots at the net at Pittsburgh Ice Arena, but the Spartans could not get the rebounds and put back attempts in front of the net.

Read More...

Neshannock coach Mike Kirkwood celebrates his team’s win against Quaker Valley during the WPIAL Class AA Championship on Tuesday, May 26, 2015 at Consol Energy Park in Washington. Neshannock won 4-0.
Longtime Neshannock baseball coach Mike Kirkwood resigns
January 18, 2020
After 32 years, baseball is about to look very different in Lawrence County.

Read More...

North Allegheny High School cheerleaders compete in the WPIAL Spirit Championships at Hempfield High School on Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020.
Baldwin, South Park, Laurel win WPIAL spirit championships
January 4, 2020
The new year also marked the potential beginning of a new era for competitive cheer in Western Pennsylvania.

Read More...

Quaker Valley and New Castle boys basketball teams tip off in a section contest Jan. 3, 2020, at Quaker Valley.
Thiero’s 30 points guides No. 2 Quaker Valley past No. 5 New Castle
It did not take Quaker Valley long to say adieu to New Castle on Friday night.

Read More...

Brentwood’s Aiden Wardzinski runs against Neshannock during their WPIAL playoff game Nov. 8, 2019, at Freedom.
Brentwood defense denies Neshannock in Class 2A quarterfinal
November 9, 2019
Bend but don’t break.

Read More...

Springdale’s Christian Vokes attempts to cover Jeannette’s Stephan Twichell as he pulls in a touchdown pass in the second half at Springdale’s Veteran Memorial Stadium Friday, Sept 20, 2019.
Jeannette blanks Springdale in battle of unbeatens
September 20, 2019
Offense wins games, but defense wins championships.

Read More...

Shenango huddles against Western Beaver on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2019.
Turnovers fuel Shenango in victory over Western Beaver
September 8, 2019
Points off turnovers proved to be the difference in Shenango’s home opener Saturday at Glenn “Pop” John Stadium.

Read More...

Members of the Laurel football team prepare to play Rochester on Aug. 30, 2019.
Laurel’s defense, running game overwhelm Rochester
August 31, 2019
Championship football teams are often built around a solid running game or a stout defensive unit.

Read More...

Central Catholic defense strong in rout of York William Penn
August 24, 2019
After losing the final two games of the 2018 season, Central Catholic saw its 2019 season start off a little rocky. After a three-and-out to start the game Friday night, the Vikings gave up a long scoring drive to fall behind early.

Read More...

Union players practice Aug. 13, 2019.
Union small in numbers but big on talent
August 20, 2019
Another year, another common scenario for coach Stacy Robinson and the Union Scotties. One of the smallest schools in the WPIAL, Union had just 20 kids arrive for the first day of camp.

Read More...

Laurel football players huddle during practice Aug. 13, 2019.
Experienced Laurel motivated for big season
Ten starters back on offense. Nine starters back on defense. And a team that feels like it should have been in the postseason last year.

Read More...

Ellwood City football players warm up during practice Aug. 13, 2019.
Daily improvement, consistency are keys to success for Ellwood City
August 19, 2019
Four head coaches in four seasons can certainly lead to a lot of inconsistencies in a program.

Read More...

Shenango players huddle during practice Aug. 13, 2019.
Shenango roster young but experienced
A quality football team usually has a good combination of youth and experience on its roster. For Shenango, after a season where at times seven or more freshmen were starting, youth and experience come as a package deal.

Read More...

Riverside quarterback Ben Hughes throws a pass during practice on Thursday, Aug. 15, 2019.
Riverside to rely on veteran QB Ben Hughes
For most teams, a winning record and a trip to the playoffs would be seen as a successful season.

Read More...

Mohawk football players gather during practice Aug. 13, 2019.
New Mohawk starters carry torch into new season
Mohawk’s 2018 season was one of the best in program history.

Read More...

New Castle players practice Aug. 13, 2019.
McKnight moves to tailback to bolster New Castle running game
August 17, 2019
Most high school coaches would be excited to have a first-team all-conference quarterback returning behind center.

Read More...

Blackhawk’s Kristiana Bufalini pitches against Quaker Valley on April 17, 2019, at Blackhawk.
Quaker Valley takes down Blackhawk in Section 3-4A
April 18, 2019
Growing pains.

Read More...

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