Trib HSSN Top 20 Stories of 2020: Pandemic sidelines champs

Wednesday, December 23, 2020 | 6:23 PM

The most unique year in our lifetime is coming to an end. With so many mass starts and stops, highs and lows, just about all walks of life were affected by the coronavirus in 2020.

High school sports were no different. The first two and a half months of the year were carefree and business as usual. Then the final nine and a half months were greatly affected by the pandemic, whether scholastic contests were played or not.

Trib HSSN will close out the year with a daily countdown and a look back at the top 20 WPIAL stories from the year 2020.

No. 11 – Covid KOs champs

Before the fall sports season began, the PIAA and WPIAL determined that if a game or match could not be played in the regular season, it would be ruled a no contest.

However, that would change come postseason time.

Once the football, soccer, volleyball, tennis and golf playoffs began, a participant or team that could not participate for covid-19 related reasons would be forced to forfeit.

While all of the WPIAL football playoffs were played without incident, that wasn’t the case in the PIAA football playoffs.

Several teams advanced in the state playoffs due to a school having to forfeit because of covid-19 concerns, including WPIAL Class 6A champion Central Catholic. The Vikings forfeited their state quarterfinals playoff game to McDowell, a week after beating North Allegheny for a second straight district crown.

There were a couple of teams that qualified for the WPIAL soccer and girls volleyball playoff berths but could not compete because of pandemic-related issues. They all notified the district before the brackets were released, so there were no forfeits once the postseason began.

The biggest postseason omission came in boys soccer.

Defending Class 2A champion Quaker Valley finished 11-1-1 overall and a half-game behind North Catholic in Section 4-2A.

However, the Quakers didn’t get a chance to defend their crown as the school closed two buildings because of covid-19 concerns and made the decision to shut down all athletic teams for two weeks right before the district playoffs were set to begin.

No. 12 – Emotional Championship

No. 13 – Outstanding Olivia

No. 14 – The Bucs Aren’t Stopping Here

No. 15 – Free Fall

No. 16 – An Overdue Golden Storm

No. 17 – Lots of Mercy for Central Valley Foes

No. 18 – Swimming Sweep…Again

No. 19 – Fabulous Freshmen

No. 20 – Golden Knights of the Tennis Court

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