What to watch for in WPIAL sports for May 6, 2024: Section 1-5A showdowns to decide playoff positioning

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Sunday, May 5, 2024 | 9:46 PM


For the second straight year, the battle for a Section 1-5A baseball title is coming down to the final section series of the regular season.

The four playoff teams have clinched, but the section crown and playoff order is still up for grabs.

On Monday, Franklin Regional visits Penn-Trafford at 4 p.m. while Plum hosts Fox Chapel at 4 p.m.

Penn-Trafford is the only team of the four that controls its own destiny to a section championship.

The Warriors are 9-1 and enjoy a two-game lead over Franklin Regional, which sits at 7-3 in the section.

The other two teams are in the middle, as the Mustangs and Foxes begin their final section series of the season with 8-2 section records.

There is a chance all four teams could end up tied for first place. If Franklin Regional beats Penn-Trafford twice and Fox Chapel and Plum split, all four would finish with 9-3 section records.

Fox Chapel at Plum can be seen on Trib HSSN at 4 p.m.

Win and in

Several WPIAL baseball teams control their own destiny heading into the final few days of the regular season.

Some are dealing with those four sweet words that are glorious coming down the stretch…win and you’re in.

Here are the teams that can clinch a playoff berth Monday with a triumph on the diamond.

In Section 1-3A, Shenango can clinch with a home win over Ellwood City.

In Section 3-3A, East Allegheny is into the postseason with a victory at Freeport.

In Section 4-3A, Greensburg Salem earns a playoff berth with a win at Yough.

In Section 1-2A, the winner of Beth-Center at Washington clinches a playoff spot.

In Section 2-2A, Freedom can clinch with a win at Northgate.

In Section 3-2A, Jeannette is postseason bound with a victory at Ligonier Valley.

In Section 2-A, Springdale earns a playoff berth with a upset win at Union.

Crowns to be claimed

Two section championships will be decided either Monday or Tuesday in a head-to-head battle.

In Section 1, Mohawk (10-0) has a one-game lead over defending district and state champion Riverside (9-1) heading into their section series that starts at Riverside.

If the Warriors win Monday, they are outright section champions. If the Panthers prevail, then the Tuesday game at Mohawk will be a section championship showdown.

In Section 2-2A, defending WPIAL champ Seton LaSalle (12-0) will battle Our Lady of the Sacred Heart (11-1).

If the Rebels win at home on Monday, they are outright section winners. If the Chargers prevail, the teams’ contest on Tuesday at Youthtowne will be for the section crown.

Win and in, lose and still hope

Two district softball teams face a win and you’re in head-to-head game Monday when Burgettstown (5-6) hosts Beth-Center (4-6).

The winner is in and the loser may or may not be eliminated.

If Burgettstown wins, it is in and Beth-Center is out.

However if the Bulldogs win, while they are into the postseason, the Blue Devils would still have hope.

If Burgettstown loses, it could qualify if Beth-Center falls to first-place Bentworth on Tuesday.

Final Four Monday

The WPIAL boys tennis team semifinals are slated for Monday.

In Class 3A, the top four seeds have advanced through two rounds and square off for a berth in the district title match.

Top-seeded North Allegheny will face No. 4 seed and 2022 champion Fox Chapel at the Nichols Courts at Sewickley Academy.

In the other final four match, defending champion and No. 2-seeded Gateway battles No. 3 Upper St. Clair at Bethel Park HS.

In 2A, top seed and defending champion Sewickley Academy takes on No. 4 South Park at Shady Side Academy.

No. 2 North Catholic goes up against the lone surprise into the semifinals, No. 6 Quaker Valley, at North Allegheny HS.

All four matches begin at 3:30 p.m.

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