PIAA Class AAA boys volleyball final preview: North Allegheny vs. Central York

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Friday, June 7, 2019 | 2:45 PM


PIAA Boys Volleyball

Championship

Class 3A

North Allegheny (22-0) vs. Central York (19-2)

2:30 p.m. Saturday at Penn State’s Pegula Ice Arena

Coaches: Dan Schall, North Allegheny; Todd Goodling, Central York

Players to watch: Drew Hunker, Sr., OH, North Allegheny; Braden Richard, Sr., OH, Central York

The skinny: North Allegheny and Central York own a combined 30 PIAA finals appearances and 13 championships. The Tigers have six state titles, while the Panthers have claimed seven crowns. The teams met in the state tournament the past two seasons. North Allegheny won a five-set battle in last year’s semifinals, while Central York defeated the Tigers in the 2017 finals. It was North Allegheny’s last lost before beginning its winning streak. The teams have met in the state finals five times overall — also in 1982, 1985, 2011 and 2014 — with Central York coming out on top each time. … The Tigers, the defending PIAA 3A champions, have won 45 straight matches. NA topped Bethel Park, 3-1, Tuesday in the semifinals. It was a rematch of a 3-0 victory over the Black Hawks in the WPIAL title contest. Hunker leads North Allegheny with 350 kills. He had a team-best 16 against Bethel Park in Tuesday’s semifinal. Seniors Ben Mendes (13), Jeremiah Zemet (10) and Alex Zubrow (10) also had double-digit kills in the match. Zubrow added a team-best seven blocks and four aces. Senior setter Sava Topich helped run the Tigers offense with 46 assists, and he has 1,043 for the season. Senior libero Trevor Treser leads the team this season with 480 digs, He had 19 against Bethel Park. … Central York, the District 3 champion, owns a seven-match winning streak. Its last loss was to rival Northeastern in the team’s league tournament finals. Northeastern handed the Panthers both of their losses this season. But Central York gained revenge on Northeastern with a five-set victory in Tuesday’s semifinal contest. Richard, a St. Francis (Pa.) recruit, has paced the Central York attack this season with 426 kills and 122 blocks. Hitters Kyle Mehl, Matt Minkin, Prince Gabriel and Eric Bowman also are ones to watch in the attack at the net. Setter Brock Anderson averages 48.7 assists a match, and libero Brandt Kelbaugh anchors the back line. … Penn State has hosted the PIAA boys volleyball state championship matches each year since 2005.

Michael Love is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Michael by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .

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