Westmoreland high school softball playoff preview capsules for May 21, 2024

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Monday, May 20, 2024 | 4:37 PM


WPIAL softball playoffs

Class 3A

Semifinals

2-Ligonier Valley (15-5) vs. 3-South Park (18-1)

4 p.m. Tuesday at Penn-Trafford

Winner plays: Winner of 1-Avonworth (14-3)/4-Mohawk (16-5) in championship (date, time, site TBD) at Cal (Pa.)’s Lilley Field

Players to watch: Marlee Miller, Ligonier Valley; Grace Kempton, South Park

Extra bases: Ligonier Valley goes as senior ace Cheyenne Piper goes, and the right-hander is on a dominant run. She has three straight no-hitters, including a 1-0 win over Ellwood City in the quarterfinals. She struck out a season-high 17 and did not issue a walk in the win. She also no-hit Keystone Oaks, 8-0, in the first round, fanning 14. She has not allowed a hit in 22 1/3 innings. Natalie Bizup had a sacrifice fly in the quarters for the Rams, who last played in the WPIAL semis in 2021 when they reached the PIAA finals. The Rams are only averaging 3.9 runs but are allowing just 1.2. … South Park, the Section 4 champion, takes a 17-game winning streak into the semifinals. The Eagles blanked Deer Lakes, 1-0, in the first round, then shut out Central Valley, 4-0, in the quarters. In the second playoff win, Sydney Sekely pitched a two-hitter and struck out 10 and also drove in a run. Grace Kempton went 2 for 3 with a double, home run and RBI, and Kylie Mettrick tripled and drove in a run. South Park lost in the first round the last three years. The Eagles haven’t been to the semifinals since 2019.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a TribLive reporter covering local sports in Westmoreland County. He can be reached at bbeckner@triblive.com.

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