Norwin notebook: Football players happy to be back on field after covid shutdown

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Saturday, October 9, 2021 | 11:01 AM


Norwin’s football players were itching to get back on the field after a covid-related forfeit Sept. 24 and some unexpected down time. The Knights may never have been so anxious.

Players were on the field at Knights Stadium on Sept. 30 after the girls soccer game, and they were bursting with energy.

They threw a football around and laughed as game day drew near.

It was like opening night eve all over again.

“We like to come down here after our team dinner,” senior running back Dom Barca said. “We can’t wait to play. It’s been two weeks.”

But the Knights were tripped up by Baldwin, 21-10.

Baldwin coach Tim Sweeney, the former Derry coach, showed sympathy for the Knights over their covid issues.

Baldwin had half of last season wiped out because of covid protocols, playing just five games in 2020.

“Give Norwin a lot of credit. It’s hard to come back. They were getting on a little bit of a roll, and then they get shut down,” Sweeney said. “This isn’t professional football, this is high school, and it’s hard for kids to bounce back. I want to congratulate them; they played the game hard all night.”

Xander Smith, known for his abilities as a long snapper, caught a touchdown pass from Luke Levendosky, while Joey Castle made a 26-yard field goal. But Baldwin scored off a blocked punt and a fumble return to pull away from the Knights.

Tennis bounces back

After losing its first match of the season (4-1 against Latrobe), the Norwin girls tennis team rebounded with a 5-0 win over Penn-Trafford.

Jenna Beach, Sydney Pesarsick and Sadie Cuturilo all won singles matches for the Knights, while Abby Campbell and Jordan Napierkowski, and Olivia Knoechel and Liz Nicholson picked up doubles wins.

The junior varsity team finished the season undefeated, capping the year with a 5-0 over Penn-Trafford.

Moving on

Norwin seniors Jenna Beach and Sydney Pesarsick advanced to the WPIAL Class AAA tennis doubles championship.

After falling to Ellen Liu and Sarah Gardner of Franklin Regional in the Section 1-AAA semifinals, 6-3, 6-2, Beach and Pesarsick moved into the third-place match. There, they defeated Maya Jain and Emily Perce, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4.

The top four finishers qualified for the WPIAL tournament.

College scene

Senior goalkeeper Sam Wexell (Ohio) is one of the top goalkeepers in the Mid-American Conference. She made six saves in a 1-0 win over Toledo, giving her seven wins and six shutouts this season for the Bobcats.

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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