Breaking down the 2022 WPIAL girls soccer playoffs

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Wednesday, October 19, 2022 | 3:39 PM


Here’s a look at the 2022 WPIAL girls soccer playoffs:

Class 4A

Favorite: North Allegheny. The Tigers have 10 shutouts, including seven straight. Their only loss was to Seneca Valley in Section 1 play. Most of last year’s team returned. Speaking of last year, NA still resents a first-round loss to Fox Chapel, the Tigers’ only defeat of the season. They finished 16-1-1. Watch senior Lucia Wells, a Pitt commit.

Contenders: Mt. Lebanon, the Section 2 champion, has 11 shutouts. Both of its losses are to Peters Township. … Peters Township was a semifinalist last season and is again potent offensively. … Seneca Valley did not have a loss until North Allegheny clipped it, 1-0, earlier this week. The Raiders have a 1-1 draw with Pine-Richland. They have allowed four goals. D-1 commits are Chloe Leonard (Charlotte) and Virginia Fronk (George Mason). … Upper St. Clair was third in a tough Section 2.

Don’t overlook: Bethel Park plays in a tough Section 2 and has been involved in nine one-goal games.

Prediction: North Allegheny over Peters Township

Class 3A

Favorite: Mars might be the most clear-cut favorite in any class, girls or boys. The Fightin’ Planets have been on a remarkable run, winning three straight WPIAL and PIAA championships, and have not been beaten in 77 straight games. They have allowed three goals all season. Top players include Piper Coffield (Indiana), Reese Dunaway (St. John’s), Gwen Howell (Richmond) and Ava Lewis (William & Mary).

Contenders: Moon won WPIAL and PIAA championships in 4A last season before dropping a classification. The Tigers have outscored their opponents, 73-1. Center-mid Hailey Longwell is a tough matchup. … Fast-paced Plum has reached the WPIAL final three straight years. The Mustangs’ lone loss is to Latrobe in Section 3. … Section 2 champion Thomas Jefferson has 11 shutouts. … Elizabeth Forward finished second in Section 2 behind Thomas Jefferson, a team with which it split a pair of games. Bella Vozar is a dangerous scorer. … Latrobe has a potent attack that balances well with the goalkeeping of Sofia DeCerb.

Don’t overlook: South Fayette was a semifinalist last year. The Lions tied 4A Peters Township. … Franklin Regional has 10 shutouts from standout keeper Aris Lamanna.

Prediction: Mars over Moon

Class 2A

Favorite: North Catholic has reached the title game three straight times and has the talent to make it a fourth. The Section 1 champs’ only loss is to 4A Fox Chapel, 5-4. Lauren McDonald is a Rhode Island commit.

Contenders: Mt. Pleasant is not all that familiar with being the team to beat, but the Vikings have offensive firepower and play a formation that teams have trouble preparing for. The Vikings have never won a WPIAL title. They have 12 shutouts and 108 goals. … Defending champion Avonworth beat North Catholic in last year’s final, but lost twice to the Trojanettes this season. The Antelopes have 11 clean sheets and are again considered a strong contender. … South Park has won 26 straight section titles. … Freeport’s only losses are to Burrell and Knoch. … Southmoreland made the semifinals last year but has been without standout Olivia Cernuto (leg injury) since Sept. 12.

Don’t overlook: Section 2 champ Knoch is on a 10-game unbeaten streak. … Burrell has a win over South Park. … Yough has a career 100-goal scorer in McKenzie Pritts, a Robert Morris recruit.

Prediction: North Catholic over Mt. Pleasant

Class A

Favorite: Freedom was a semifinal team a year ago. The Bulldogs, who won Section 3, have eight games of five or more goals. They are led by Shaye Bailey and Julie Mohrbacher.

Contenders: Springdale did not lose to a Class A team and won Section 1 over Greensburg Central Catholic. The Dynamos reached the semifinals last year but lost to eventual champion Steel Valley. Springdale has three WPIAL titles, the last coming in 2009. … Winchester Thurston played a light schedule, but has not lost heading into the postseason, including winning a doubleheader Tuesday. … Greensburg Central Catholic has two losses to Springdale. GCC has been to the WPIAL and PIAA title games two years in a row. It won a WPIAL title in 2020. The Centurions feature career 100-goal scorer Sara Felder, a Youngstown State commit. … Chartiers-Houston was the Section 2 champion.

Don’t overlook: Waynesburg features WPIAL goals leader Ashlyn Basinger.

Prediction: Freedom over Springdale

THE SCHEDULE

Girls

WPIAL playoffs

Class 4A

Quarterfinals

Oct. 27 schedule

Bethel Park (10-4-2) at North Allegheny (17-1), 6:30 p.m.; Upper St. Clair (10-6) at Seneca Valley (12-1-2), 6:30 p.m.; Pine-Richland (8-5-1) at Mt. Lebanon (14-2-1), 6:30 p.m.; Butler (10-6-1) at Peters Township (12-1-3), 6:30 p.m.

Class 3A

Preliminary round

Saturday’s schedule

Connellsville (8-9) at Penn-Trafford (7-6-4), 12:30 p.m.

First round

Monday’s schedule

Connellsville/Penn-Trafford winner at Mars (14-0), 6:30 p.m.; Franklin Regional (10-5-2) at South Fayette (11-4-1), 6:30 p.m.; West Allegheny (11-7) at Thomas Jefferson (15-2), 6:30 p.m.; Ringgold (11-6-1) at Latrobe (10-2-2), 6:30 p.m.; Indiana (6-9-1) at Moon (16-0), 6:30 p.m.; Oakland Catholic (8-6-1) at Elizabeth Forward (14-2-1), 6:30 p.m.; Kiski Area (7-10-1) at Plum (14-1), 6:30 p.m.; Montour (9-5-2) at Hampton (14-3), 6:30 p.m.

Class 2A

First round

Tuesday’s schedule

Valley (7-9) at North Catholic (13-1), J.C. Stone Field, 6:30 p.m.; Burrell (11-3-3-) at Beaver (7-5-3), 8 p.m.; Hopewell (6-9-1) vs. Knoch (13-3-1) at Freeport, 6 p.m.; Keystone Oaks (8-8-1) at Avonworth (15-3), 8 p.m.; West Mifflin (7-6-1) at Mt. Pleasant (16-1), 6:30 p.m.; Southmoreland (11-3-1) at Freeport (13-2), 8 p.m.; Woodland Hills (8-6) at South Park (12-4), 8 p.m.; Yough (10-6-1) at Shady Side Academy (9-5), 8 p.m.

Class A

Preliminary round

Thursday’s schedule

Bishop Canevin (7-9) vs. Bentworth (6-9-1) at Peters Township, 7:30 p.m.

First round

Saturday’s schedule

Bentworth/Bishop Canevin winner at Freedom (13-4), noon; Seton LaSalle (11-4) vs. OLSH (10-5-1) at Peters Township, noon; Riverview (8-7) at Chartiers-Houston (14-2), 2 p.m.; Riverside (5-9 vs. Greensburg C.C. (10-3) at Peters Township, 2 p.m.; Sewickley Academy (8-7) vs. Springdale (13-3) at Kiski Area, noon; Charleroi (10-6) vs. Mohawk (9-6) at Neshannock, 2 p.m.; Serra Catholic (8-9) vs. Winchester Thurston (9-0-1) at Shady Side Academy, 2 p.m.; Aquinas Academy (11-4) at Waynesburg Central (13-3), 2 p.m.

Watch an archive broadcast of the WPIAL Soccer Playoff Pairings Show on Trib HSSN.

Check out complete WPIAL soccer brackets on Trib HSSN.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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