PIAA soccer, volleyball, field hockey playoffs begin Tuesday

Monday, November 4, 2019 | 6:32 PM

The WPIAL came up empty in the PIAA girls soccer playoffs last year. Now, 11 teams begin their quest for a golden change.

Tuesday marks the start of the 2019 PIAA boys and girls soccer playoffs, with first-round action throughout the commonwealth.

Last season was the first time since 2014 that no WPIAL girls soccer team won a state championship.

North Allegheny, Mars, North Catholic and Shady Side Academy are the newly-crowned WPIAL champions taking part in the state playoffs, along with the four district runners-up and three consolation match winners.

South Park opens up with defending state champion Bedford in a Class AA first-round match at Somerset.

Meanwhile, 11 WPIAL boys soccer teams also begin their journey for state gold Tuesday.

Canon-McMillan, Franklin Regional, Quaker Valley and Greensburg Central Catholic are the freshly-minted WPIAL champions ready to start the state playoffs, along with the four runners-up and three consolation match winners.

West Allegheny is the defending PIAA Class AAA champion and will open up against District 6 champion Hollidaysburg at Mansion Park in Altoona.

There is no defending PIAA boys Class AAAA champion after last year’s winner, West Lawn Wilson, was forced to vacate the title after a miscommunication over a players legitimate age was discovered after the playoffs were over.

Girls volleyball state openers

The PIAA girls volleyball playoffs also begin Tuesday with 13 WPIAL teams taking part.

Even though their two-year reign in the WPIAL ended on Saturday, North Allegheny enters the state playoffs as the defending champion.

The breakdown of district teams in girls volleyball is Canon-McMillan and North Allegheny in Class AAAA; Knoch, Thomas Jefferson, Franklin Regional and South Fayette in Class AAA; Freeport, North Catholic, Avonworth and Beaver in Class AA; and Bishop Canevin, Fort Cherry and Geibel Catholic in Class A.

Two district teams open Tuesday against defending champions.

Avonworth faces Bald Eagle at Bellefonte in Class AA, while Fort Cherry battles Northern Cambria at Forest Hills in Class A.

PIAA field hockey

Soccer and volleyball aren’t the only state playoffs starting up Tuesday as the PIAA launches the 2019 field hockey state postseason, as well.

Pine-Richland and Peters Township in Class AAA, Penn-Trafford in Class AA and Shady Side Academy in Class A are the four WPIAL representatives.

If history is any indication, the district’s involvement in the state field hockey playoffs will be short and not so sweet.

Not only has a WPIAL team never won a PIAA field hockey championship, a district team has never even qualified for the state title match.

District 3 teams won two of the three state crowns a year ago and have four championships in the last two years.

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