Westmoreland boys soccer playoff capsules for Saturday, Oct. 26
Friday, October 25, 2019 | 8:47 PM
Class AAA semifinals
1-Franklin Regional (17-0-1) vs. 12-Blackhawk (12-3-4)
4 p.m. at Hampton
Winner plays: Winner of 7-West Allegheny (13-5-1)/6-Hampton (15-3-2) in championship at Highmark Stadium (time, date TBD)
Coaches: Rand Hudson, Franklin Regional; Jerrod Rebich, Blackhawk
Players to watch: Anthony DiFalco, So., F, Franklin Regional; Noah Finkbeiner, Jr., MF, Blackhawk
Corner kicks: Franklin Regional overcame a push from Trinity and left Fox Chapel with a collective sigh of relief. Despite outshooting the Hillers, 20-1, the Panthers managed just one opportunistic goal by Nolan Scholze. Franklin Regional had 13 corner kicks in the win. The Panthers are on the path to back-to-back WPIAL titles thanks to a stellar defensive back that has allowed just three goals, all on set pieces. Sophomore Anthony DiFalco has 28 goals. It could be a finals rematch if the Panthers and West Allegheny advance. … Blackhawk, the third-place team from Section 2, led the WPIAL in ties this season (four), which shows how strong the Cougars defense can be. The Cougars upset No. 4 Belle Vernon as Finkbeiner scored twice and Logan Gonzalez and Cougar Bourl added second-half goals. Blackhawk advanced to the semis for the first time in program history.
Class A semifinals
2-Greensburg Central Catholic (13-3-1) vs. 6-Springdale (15-3)
2 p.m. at Hampton
Winner plays: Winner of 1-Winchester Thurston (15-1)/4-Carlynton (17-2) in championship at Highmark Stadium (time, date TBD)
Coaches: Tyler Solis, GCC; Cesareo Sanchez, Springdale
Players to watch: Nate Ward, Sr., F, GCC; Mike Mitchell, Sr., F, Springdale
Corner kicks: GCC is back in the semis after reaching the WPIAL final a year ago. The Centurions finally solved Avonworth with a 3-1 win in the quarterfinals. Ward, Mason Fabean and Carlo Denis scored in the victory, which avenged WPIAL final and PIAA semifinal losses to the Antelopes. Now, the Centurions hope to get a shot at another nemesis, Winchester Thurston, with whom they split a pair of one-goal games on the way to sharing the Section 2 title. Ward and Denis each have 19 goals. Sophomore Max House and freshman Jacob Conti have seen time in goal for GCC. … Springdale advanced to the semifinals for the third straight season with a 2-1 victory over No. 14 Bishop Canevin as Chris Mitchell scored the winner in overtime on an assist from his brother, Michael. Ephraim Duku had 19 goals during the regular season. The Dynamos have surrendered three goals in their last eight games. Springdale reached the WPIAL title game two years ago and lost to North Catholic, 2-0.
— Bill Beckner Jr.
Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at email@example.com or via Twitter .
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