District 3 champ Camp Hill blanks Shady Side Academy to capture first PIAA title

Saturday, November 16, 2019 | 1:02 PM

HERSHEY — The Shady Side Academy girls soccer team was on a mission to capture a second PIAA title in school history, but when the Indians stepped onto the field at Hersheypark Stadium on Saturday, they were met by a team equally as motivated.

In search of the perfect season — an undefeated season along with a District 3 championship and a PIAA Class A title — the Camp Hill Lions (25-0) took control of the game from the very beginning and cruised to a 2-0 win.

They scored five minutes in, added a second with 16 minutes to go in the first half and never looked back to claim the first state title in program history.

“It’s amazing, you can’t do anything better,” Camp Hill coach Jared Latchford said. “We won every single game and now we’ll be looking for the same thing next season. There’s no regrets from this season, there’s not one game to look at this season and say we could’ve done better.”

For the first three minutes of the game, the Indians (20-2) seemed like they were in position to control the pace of play. Senior forward Callie Davis created an opportunity from about 20 yards out within the first minute, then Melissa Riggins created an opportunity shortly after, but the Lions quickly responded.

Around the five-minute mark of the first half, Camp Hill’s Ashley Chrencik found the back of the net to put her team ahead 1-0.

The Lions had just fired two point blank shots at Shady Side goalkeeper Molly Skvorak, but the senior stalwart pushed both away. The second save landed on the foot of Chrencik, and the senior defender found the back of the net.

According to Latchford, starting quickly hasn’t been his team’s forte this year, but over the course of the past two games, that’s what the Lions have done.

“We just decided to not be that way anymore,” Latchford said. “We scored in the first five minutes of the past two games. It’s just a huge lift and takes the nerves off early and really lets you settle into your game.”

Then, with 16 minutes left in the first half, the Lions struck again. Junior midfielder Julia Raich made a run down the left flank and slipped a shot past Skvorak to net her 42nd of the season and give her team a firm two-goal lead.

“We knew that they had potential to have a quick counter,” Shady Side Academy coach Mary Lynch said. “So, when they got that second goal and went into halftime up 2-0, we just kind of talked about coming out, playing our game and still creating scoring opportunities.”

That’s exactly what the Indians did in the second half. The WPIAL Class A champions controlled the pace, kept the ball in Camp Hill’s defensive half, and created scoring opportunities throughout the second 40 minutes.

With about 15 minutes to go, Tessa White got sprung into the box and had a one-on-one with the keeper but fired her shot right at the goalie.

After capturing their first WPIAL title since 2016, the Indians were on the verge of capturing their first state title since 2017. But, with a formidable opponent on the opposite side, the Indians fell short. But Lynch couldn’t be more proud of her team for everything that was accomplished this season.

“They have done such an awesome job this year,” Lynch said. “I mean this was our second loss of the season; Unfortunately, it came in the state championship game. But this group of seniors, they’ve done such a great job with their leadership, and for the whole team, getting here has been our goal all season.”

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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