Trib HSSN rewind: A look back at the 2019 girls lacrosse season

Saturday, July 20, 2019 | 4:01 PM

Winning a championship is a great feeling, but when a team captures a championship for the first time in school history, it’s an even greater accomplishment.

The 2019 girls lacrosse season saw not one, but two programs lift WPIAL hardware for the first time.

When it came down to competing for the WPIAL Class AAA championship crown, Shady Side Academy had to wait an extra day in order to lift the trophy.

After the championship game was postponed because of lightning with 28 seconds left in regulation, Shady Side Academy and Upper St. Clair were forced to come back the next day. They played out the 28 seconds left in regulation, then played two three-minute overtime periods.

The winning goal didn’t come until there was five seconds left in the final overtime period. Shady Side Academy freshman Molly Walsh went against her norm and buried a high shot, when she normally shoots low, into the back of the net to capture the WPIAL Class AAA championship.

Shady Side Academy went on to win 21-7 in the first round of the PIAA playoffs. Then, in the second round, the Indians ran into Class AAA runner-up Manheim Township and suffered a 20-5 loss that ended their season. Although it qualified for the state tournament, Upper St. Clair fell to District 1 third-place finisher, Garnet Valley, 25-7 in the first round.

Emmie Lau and Abby Todd from Shady Side Academy and Lindsay Newton, Lauren Hart and Aria Deitrich from Upper St. Clair were selected for the All-WPIAL team this year. Latrobe coach Kaytie Russo was tabbed as the WPIAL Class AAA Coach of the Year.

Lau, a Bown recruit, was honored as a US Lacrosse Girls’ High School All-American for Western Pennsylvania after scoring 60 goals and dishing out 14 assists as a senior this season.

Oakland Catholic’s first WPIAL title capped off a memorable undefeated season where it won 15 games and denied Hampton a third straight WPIAL title. The Eagles held the lead for a majority of the game, but in the end Oakland Catholic had to hold off the defending champions, who were within two goals with six minutes remaining.

They were able to hold off the Talbots to capture their first title.

Four Oakland Catholic players — the Cyterski twins, Natalie and Megan, and Emily Coughlin and Ashley Sullivan were all named to the All-WPIAL team, along with Hampton’s Liz Dolan and Sarah Rech. Class AA Coach of the Year honors were split between Seton LaSalle’s Brian Klisavage and Blackhawk’s Kevin White.

Oakland Catholic and Hampton both advanced to the PIAA tournament. Hampton fell to District 3 champion York Catholic, 15-8, in the first round. Oakland Catholic took down District 10-champion Villa Maria, 20-8, before becoming York Catholic’s second WPIAL victim of the state tournament.

After receiving All-WPIAL honors, Quaker Valley’s Katherine Blaugrund added another honor to the list as she earned the same honors as Lau and was named a US Lacrosse Girls’ High School All-American for Western Pennsylvania after scoring 75 goals and dishing out 23 assists. She also became Quaker Valley’s all-time leading scorer with 252 goals and 69 assists.

Greg Macafee is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Greg by email at or via Twitter .

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