Franklin Regional faces well-rested DuBois in PIAA Class 3A volleyball semifinals

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Monday, November 16, 2020 | 5:31 PM


It’s been an unusual and crazy fall sports season because of covid-19.

Teams have been forced to postpone or cancel competitions.

Some teams even forfeited playoff games.

The DuBois girls’ volleyball team is making its first appearance in the PIAA Class 3A playoffs Tuesday, but it hasn’t played a match since sweeping Brockway, 3-0, on Oct. 27.

Franklin Regional hosts DuBois at 6 p.m. Tuesday in the state semifinals, and the Panthers have played a handful of postseason matches since its opponent last took the court.

Because DuBois (11-4) was the only Class 3A team in District 9, the Beavers, who previously lost in the state playoffs to Thomas Jefferson (twice) and Montour, were awarded the district title for a third consecutive season.

But because of covid-19, the PIAA changed the playoff format this season, only allowing district champions. DuBois advanced to the semifinals when District 10 champion Conneaut forfeited because of covid-related issues.

DuBois is led by seniors Taylor Smith and Emma Torretti.

“I’m sure they’ll be ready,” Franklin Regional coach Mike Feorene said. “Will it affect their timing? I’m sure they’ve been practicing. The more than an hour trip for them might affect their timing more. This is the PIAA playoffs, and there are no bad teams left.”

The winner advances to the championship match, which takes place 3:30 p.m. Saturday at Cumberland Valley against the winner of the York Suburban (District 3) and Bethlehem Catholic (District 11) game.

Franklin Regional, which captured its first WPIAL title by defeating Montour on Nov. 7, opened the PIAA playoffs with a 3-0 victory (25-15, 25-17, 25-22) against District 6 champion Bellefonte.

Senior Aly Kindelberger, who will play at DePaul, had 17 kills to surpass 1,000 for her career. Sophomore Ella Evans added nine kills, and seniors Renee Baldy and Alexa Feorene chipped in seven apiece for the Panthers (17-2).

Junior Sydney Breitkreutz logged nine digs, and senior Ashley Feorene contributed five service aces for the WPIAL champion.

Mike Feorene said his biggest concern is keeping the team focused.

“I’ve been watching film on them,” he said. “I’m trying to figure out their lineup. They’ve had different girls in and out of the lineup.

“They have some thunder on the outside, so our defense will be challenged. But if our defense plays as well as it did against Bellefonte, we’ll be tough to beat. Our defense was incredible and now we’re at full strength. I’m very optimistic.”

Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Paul by email at pschofield@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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