What to watch for in WPIAL sports on June 4, 2024: Shaler, North Allegheny boys volleyball ready for PIAA openers

Monday, June 3, 2024 | 10:57 PM

While the diamond state playoffs kicked off Monday, the PIAA boys volleyball and lacrosse postseasons begin in earnest on Tuesday.

The North Allegheny boys volleyball program won four straight PIAA Class 3A championships between 2018-2022 with no season in 2020 due to covid-19 outbreak.

However, for the second straight spring, the Tigers begin the state playoffs coming off a district loss to Shaler in the WPIAL finals.

Shaler ended up playing for state gold in 2023, but the Titans lost in the 3A finals to District 11 champion Parkland.

The two district powers go up against District 3 competition in the opening round Tuesday.

Shaler (16-1) will host the No. 4 team out of District 3, Carlisle (15-5), at 5 p.m.

North Allegheny (13-2) hits the road in its opener with a visit to District 3 runner-up Warwick (13-3).

You can hear that match on Trib HSSN at 5 p.m.

Also in action is the WPIAL consolation match winner as Seneca Valley (15-7) visits District 6 champion State College (9-4) at 5:30 p.m.

Bucking the trends

The last time a WPIAL team reached the PIAA Class 2A boys volleyball finals was seven years ago.

Beaver County Christian lost to Northeastern York in the 2017 state finals, 3-1.

This season, three district schools look to buck that trend and win three straight matches over the next week to reach the title match at Penn State.

WPIAL champion Mars may have the best chance. The Fightin’ Planets are a perfect 20-0 as they host District 10 runner-up Saegertown (14-3) at 7 p.m.

District 7 runner-up Armstrong (10-9) visits District 10 champion Meadville (17-0) at 6 p.m.

The WPIAL consolation winner and No. 3 team out of the district is Ambridge (14-4). The Bridgers travel to West Shamokin (15-1) to visit the District 6 champion Wolves at 7 p.m.

Another area team in the 2A state bracket is City League champion Obama Academy (14-1). The Eagles will host the No. 3 team out of District 3, Lower Dauphin (18-2), at 5:30 p.m.

Boys lacrosse hope

The PIAA started hosting lacrosse state championships in 2009.

From that year through 2019, the WPIAL was shut out when it came to success in the PIAA postseason.

That has changed post covid-19.

Thanks to three straight title runs by the Mars boys lacrosse team, including a district-first state championship in 2022, there is hope for the boys and girls lacrosse teams from District 7.

First and foremost, Mars (17-3) hopes to make it four straight state title matches as it opens up the PIAA playoffs at home against the No. 4 team from District 3, Hershey (15-6), at 6 p.m.

One other 2A WPIAL team is on the road Tuesday.

Hampton (12-7), the WPIAL consolation winner, travels to take on undefeated District 3 winner Camp Hill Trinity (20-0).

WPIAL runner-up South Fayette (20-2) opened its tournament Monday with a 15-4 win over Cathedral Prep (8-9).

In Class 3A, WPIAL champion Mt. Lebanon (17-4) visits District 10 champ McDowell (6-12) at 6 p.m.

D-7 runner-up North Allegheny (14-8) will face District 3 champion West Lawn Wilson (14-3) in Reading at 4 p.m. You can hear the match on Trib HSSN.

Girls lax lid lifters

Five WPIAL girls lacrosse teams are ready to make history, trying to become the first District 7 team to reach the PIAA finals.

The first step is opening-round matches Tuesday.

WPIAL 3A champion Mt. Lebanon (19-0) tries to stay perfect when it visits District 10 winner McDowell (9-7) in Erie at 4 p.m.

District 7 runner-up Pine-Richland (16-3) has the tall task of taking on District 3 champion and host Manheim Township (16-1) at 4:15 p.m.

Class 2A WPIAL champion Mars (14-6) stays home as it hosts the No. 4 team from District 3, Camp Hill Trinity (16-6), at 4 p.m.

WPIAL runner-up Chartiers Valley (17-3) beat District 10 champion Conneaut (10-6), 15-5, on Monday.

The District 7 consolation match winner, Penn-Trafford (17-3) will visit District 3 winner Twin Valley (16-5) at 4 p.m.

More High School Lacrosse

After trip to WPIAL final, Chartiers Valley girls lacrosse vows to maintain winning performance
WPIAL girls lacrosse players earn postseason honors from USA Lacrosse
Mars boys lacrosse falls to Marple Newtown in deja vu PIAA championship game
Optimism reigns after solid season for Hampton boys lacrosse
Already honored for soccer, Fox Chapel grad makes conference all-decade team in lacrosse too