Westmoreland volleyball teams learn WPIAL playoff foes

Monday, October 23, 2017 | 3:57 PM

Girls volleyball section champions from Westmoreland County will face a tough road during the WPIAL playoffs.

Four teams that finished first or tied for first in their respective sections were awarded no better than a No. 7 seed for the postseason tournament, which gets underway this week.

The WPIAL volleyball committee released its pairings Monday.

In Class 4A, Section 3 co-champions Norwin (8-2) and Penn-Trafford (8-2) were given the Nos. 8 and 10 seeds, respectively.

In Class 3A, Section 1 co-champion Greensburg Salem (9-1) is the No. 10 seed.

And in Class A, Section 4 champion Greensburg Central Catholic (12-2) enters the playoffs as the No. 7 seed.

“I'm really baffled getting a seven seed,” GCC coach Kate McCauley said. “We didn't think we'd be that low considering we won the section. It's interesting.”

The Centurions captured the WPIAL Class A title last season.

In the Class 4A bracket, Norwin opens first-round play against Peters Township (8-4) at 6 p.m. Thursday at Baldwin. Penn-Trafford will play Upper St. Clair (9-3) at 6 p.m. Thursday at Oakland Catholic.

Section 3 third-place finisher Hempfield (7-3), the No. 12 seed, will play at No. 5 Pine-Richland (7-3) at 6 p.m. Thursday at Freeport.

In the Class 3A first round, Greensburg Salem takes on No. 7 Hampton (8-4) at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Knoch. And No. 15 Yough (5-7) will play at No. 2 Montour (11-1) at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday.

The Golden Lions lost 3-0 to Hampton in a tournament earlier this season.

“I was happy where we were placed and happy to play a team we played before. We know a little bit about them,” said Greensburg Salem coach Taylor Guido, whose team suffered late-season losses to Indiana and Derry. “A lot of the other teams, I haven't had a chance to watch.”

In Class 2A, Derry (9-3), the Section 5 runner-up, was given the No. 7 seed and will play Shenango (10-2) in a first-round match at 6 p.m. Thursday at Armstrong. Southmoreland (8-4) will play a preliminary-round match against Burrell (6-6) at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Norwin.

Greensburg Central Catholic will take on No. 10 Fort Cherry (10-4) at 6 p.m. Wednesday in a first-round match at Bishop Canevin.

“They lost a lot of seniors, too, like we did,” McCauley said. “Hopefully, we should be evenly matched.

“I hope my team stays up and plays to the best of their ability. They play a lot better when they're not playing too seriously, so they're just going to have some fun and work hard.”

The top seeds were awarded to North Allegheny (Class AAAA), Knoch (AAA), Freeport (AA) and Bishop Canevin (A).

The quarterfinals will be Oct. 31 and the semifinals are Nov. 2. All four championships will be Nov. 4 at Baldwin.

Bill Hartlep is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at bhartlep@tribweb.com.

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