What to watch for in WPIAL sports for May 17, 2021

Sunday, May 16, 2021 | 10:43 PM

Let the games begin!

What will be a gusher by midweek begins with a trickle as the 2021 WPIAL softball playoffs start with one preliminary-round game Monday.

Even though Bentworth finished a half-game in front of California in the battle for fourth place in the Section 3-2A softball standings, neither was able to finish their section schedule because they had games left with Sto-Rox, which shutdown early.

Since the Bearcats and Trojans split their two head-to-head games during the regular season, the softball committee decided to have them play each other for the No. 16 seed.

The winner of their game Monday at Waynesburg University will face top-seeded Ligonier Valley on Wednesday.

Listen to the game at 4 p.m. on HSSN.

Lax playoff openers

Softball isn’t the only postseason starting Monday. The 2021 WPIAL lacrosse playoffs also begin with first-round matches in boys AA and girls AAA.

On the boys side, Mars, Chartiers Valley, North Catholic and South Fayette all received Class AA first-round byes.

The four opening-round matches are Shaler at Franklin Regional, Trinity visiting Hampton, Indiana hosting Quaker Valley and Moon traveling to Sewickley Academy.

For the girls, Mt. Lebanon, Upper St. Clair, Shady Side Academy and Sewickley Academy all earned byes.

There will be two doubleheaders. Fox Chapel vs. Peters Township and Moon against Bethel Park with both matches at Bethel Park, then Canon-McMillan vs. Pine-Richland and Latrobe against North Allegheny with both matches at NA at 6 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. respectively.

Final bracketology

With all the spring sports having played or preparing to start their district playoffs, the last brackets to be unveiled will happen Monday.

The district will release the boys volleyball brackets during the WPIAL Boys Volleyball Playoff Pairings Show at noon on HSSN.

The WPIAL expanded the playoff field in both Class AAA and AA as the top five teams in each section qualified instead of the top four teams.

Both classes will have a 15-team playoff field with the top seed receiving a first-round bye.

More High School Lacrosse

Former Hampton star takes reins of school’s boys lacrosse program
Bethel Park lacrosse goalkeeper Owen Peters makes Division I commitment
Longtime girls lacrosse coach helps game grow at Bethel Park
Bethel Park notebook: Owen Peters named U.S. Lacrosse All-American
Chartiers Valley lacrosse beats odds to have memorable season

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