Kriebel cousins make mark on Quaker Valley soccer programs

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Sunday, November 21, 2021 | 11:01 AM


They are two of a kind.

As 17-year-old athletes, both hail from long-standing soccer families, and both are super talented on the pitch.

Quaker Valley cousins Rowan and Chase Kriebel displayed their senior leadership skills admirably throughout the fall soccer season.

Rowan Kriebel, a 6-foot forward and captain on the boys team, led the Quakers in scoring in the regular season with 32 goals and 19 assists. He was complemented offensively by Keller Chamovitz, also a senior forward.

“Rowan is a consistently hard worker and someone that always tries to do everything in a professional manner,” boys coach J.J. Veshio said. “Whether it’s his demeanor or his play on the field, he is a tremendous leader and someone that represents our program with integrity.

“He holds a high place among the many top players that have come through here. To be able to see him succeed at such a high level and help those around him is very nice to see.”

Rowan was a four-year varsity player who ranks in the top five in career points at CV. He has been named All-WPIAL twice and was voted all-state this season by the Pennsylvania Soccer Coaches Association.

Rowan also was lauded as the co-player of the year in Section 4-2A.

“He has performed as good as anyone in the history of our storied program,” Veshio said, “and his contributions have certainly been a big part of our success. He found a way to elevate everyone around him with his strong play and positive work ethic.

“I’m very proud of everything Rowan has done as an individual and for the team. I thank him for continuing the legacy of this program.”

Chase Kriebel, a 5-7 senior striker/midfielder and one of four co-captains on the Quaker Valley girls squad, ended the regular season with a team-high nine goals after finishing with seven goals in 2020.

“Chase’s perseverance, physical and mental strength and confidence on and off the field are just a few attributes to describe the type of player she is,” said Maggie Behun, co-coach of the girls team with Rachel Loudermilk. “Chase is a hard-working and gifted athlete. She’s always been willing to adjust where she’s on the field depending on what the team needed. Chase played defense and midfield when we needed her to. But most of all, she has a nose for the goal and for the past two years has been one of our leading goal scorers.

“Alongside her many accomplishments, she is extremely kind-hearted and down-to-earth.”

Loudermilk said Chase has been a prominent presence in Quaker Valley’s girls program since day one.

“Chase made an impact from the first day she stepped on the field as a freshman,” Loudermilk said. “It is rare to have a freshman come in with such confidence, skill, relentless drive and leadership, and she has carried that throughout her career. As a freshman, if we were down, it was Chase we looked to in order to motivate the other girls and raise our level of play. That is a lot to put on a freshman, but she handled it and that hasn’t changed for four years. I think that speaks to just how much Chase has impacted this program.

“The hope is that from her example, others can step up and continue to elevate the program.”

Prior to the boys’ state playoff game against section rival North Catholic, Rowan Kriebel had racked up 40 goals and 24 assists in 2021, boosting his career totals to 93 goals and 61 assists. He scored eight goals as a freshman, 20 as a sophomore and 25 last season in a pandemic-shortened fall schedule.

“Chase and I have always been great friends,” Rowan said. “We have supported each other and have a great bond. We live about 10 minutes away from each other and, yes, we did grow up playing soccer together. We see each other pretty often to play games and have family dinners. My dad and uncle both played soccer.”

Chase Kriebel said the cousins are competitive by nature but also believe it’s important to encourage and support one another.

“Rowan and I have a good relationship,” Chase said. “We are good friends and are very competitive with each other. In sports, school or when we play fun games, we’re always trying to win. We live very close to one another. I live near town and he lives in the heights. Our families try to get together at least once a month for a family dinner.

“Growing up, we would play soccer together at his house, sometimes with our whole family. We both joke around with each other. We’re also very encouraging and supportive, always trying to motivate each other.”

Chase, who began playing soccer around the time she was in kindergarten, said competing on the pitch runs in both families.

“Pretty much everyone in our families have played soccer,” she said. “Both of our dads played soccer. My mom did play in high school, too. But our dads are probably where we both get our passion for soccer.”

Chase’s sister McAuley and brother Nick grew up competing on area soccer fields.

“My sister stopped playing soccer in high school to pursue volleyball while my brother continued through high school,” Chase said. “Rowan and Nick were lucky to have the opportunity to play together (at QV), and even win WPIAL and state championships in 2019. That was Rowan’s sophomore year and Nick’s senior year. It was super fun watching them play and win together. I was so proud for both of them.”

Loudermilk believes Chase’s motivation to succeed comes from her siblings.

“Chase attributes her drive to her brother,” Loudermilk said. “She looks up to both of her siblings and says both have been an inspiration to her when it comes to sports.”

Chase said her dad, who competed on the pitch at Fox Chapel, has been her No. 1 fan.

“The biggest influencers have been all of my family, especially my dad,” she said, “and each coach I’ve had in my career. I’ve played with so many different teams, and every coach I’ve had has taught me something new to help me improve. If it weren’t for my coaches, I wouldn’t be the player I am today.”

Chase discussed the special bond she has developed with her father.

“My dad has been my No. 1 supporter,” she said. “He’s taken me to every game, tournament and practice until I was able to myself. We constantly talk about soccer and are always on the same page when it comes to talking about my games.

“He inspires me to do better and push myself. I’m so grateful for his support and trust.”

Chase Kriebel has been an all-section selection the past two yearsand was named All-WPIAL this season, leading the Quakers to a WPIAL Class 2A quarterfinal appearance and a 7-9-2 record.

“I’m sad our season ended shorter than we wanted it to,” she said, “but I’m super proud of every one of my teammates. I’m excited for the spring to come to start lacrosse season and hope to succeed there, as well.”

A four-year varsity starter at QV, Chase plays lacrosse in the spring and has been a starter at the varsity level in that sport since her freshman season.

Rowan Kriebel, meanwhile, has experienced many big individual moments in his soccer career at QV including a few this season.

He netted two goals against Ambridge to lift the Quakers to a 3-2 win in the WPIAL Class 2A semifinals. Tied 2-2 in the early minutes of overtime, Kriebel delivered a clutch game-winning goal off a pass from Chamovitz.

No. 2 Quaker Valley went on to defeat ninth-seeded North Catholic, 5-0, in the finals to claim its 10th WPIAL title in school history.

Early in the season, Rowan peppered in five goals in an 11-0 victory against Freedom. He achieved three hat tricks at Freedom over the past three seasons.

On Nov. 16, the Quakers blanked North Catholic for a fourth time in 2021, winning a 2-0 decision in the PIAA quarterfinals. It was the 700th win in program history and upped QV’s record to 22-2 on the year.

QV, which won by scores of 3-0, 7-0, 5-0 and 2-0 against the Trojans this season, advanced to the PIAA finals Nov. 19 in Hershey to play District 4 winner Lewisburg.

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