Westmoreland H.S. notebook: Norwin golf shooting for spot in championship

Sunday, October 11, 2020 | 5:37 PM

The WPIAL boys golf postseason shifts to team competition starting Monday with semifinal tournaments.

The Class AAA tournament has a fresh name: Norwin. The Knights have not been to the playoffs in at least 23 years but returned behind a talented lineup that includes top scorers Logan Divald, Sal Cerilli, Trent Kablach and Ron Howard.

Knights coach Neil Rushnock doesn’t think Norwin ever made the playoffs before.

“They are all seniors and played together well,” Rushnock said. “There were certain pairings that just meshed together. That was the goal from the beginning: make the playoffs.”

Norwin will play in the semifinal at River Forest Country Club in Allegheny Township against Belle Vernon, Fox Chapel, Moon, Mt. Lebanon, Pine-Richland, Seneca Valley, Shady Side Academy and Upper St. Clair.

The top three teams advance to the championship Thursday at Cedarbrook Golf Course in Rostraver.

The other semifinal, at Champion Lakes, has Central Catholic, Franklin Regional, Indiana, Montour, Penn-Trafford, Peters Township, Uniontown and West Allegheny.

Franklin Regional, despite a string of regular-season success in recent years, has not been to the playoffs since 2015.

Chuck Tragesser and Michael Wareham are key players for the Panthers. Both advanced to the PIAA individual championship.

In Class AA, Burrell, Derry and Greensburg Central Catholic are in the semifinal at Duck Hollow. The other nine-team tournament will be at Beaver Valley Golf Club.

Derry won its third section title in four years. The Trojans took fifth in the WPIAL last season.

The top three teams in Class AA at each site also advance.

The Class AAA and AA finals will be Thursday at Cedarbrook.

Pons rated

Norwin has some talented underclassmen seeing varsity minutes on the football field this fall.

One is freshman Jackson Pons. A wide receiver and cornerback, Pons recently was rated as the No. 13 wide receiver prospect in the Class of 2024 by recruiting site Collegefootballtoday.org. He was selected to the NextGen The Show Showcase in December in Florida.

BVA makes a run

The Belle Vernon cross country team has a reason to celebrate this season after capturing the first section title in program history.

Low on numbers

With only nine healthy players, Ligonier Valley could not field a team Wednesday and had to forfeit its girls soccer game at Greensburg Central Catholic.

Rams athletic director Wes Siko said it is not clear when the team (3-8) will be able to return to the field at full strength.

This is the program’s first season in the WPIAL.


Belle Vernon softball player Sophia Godzak announced she will play at Division III Allegheny. She is a pitcher for the Leopards and also plays travel ball for the Pittsburgh Riot.

Winter season

The WPIAL expects winter sports to start on time, which means the first practice date for basketball, wrestling, swimming, rifle and gymnastics will be Nov. 20.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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