What to watch in high school sports on March 28, 2022: Baseball revs up

Sunday, March 27, 2022 | 9:15 PM

Most WPIAL baseball teams will get a week of nonsection play in this week before starting their “section series” schedule next week.

However, there are five sections that have a bloated seven teams. For those sections, there is no warm-up.

Section play for those teams begins this week.

The sections are Section 2-5A, Section 2-4A, Section 3-4A, Section 2-2A and Section 4-2A.

Some of the key early section matchups Monday, weather permitting:

In Section 2-5A, Mars visits Fox Chapel. The Fightin’ Planets and Foxes finished tied for second last spring, one game behind Plum.

In Section 2-4A, New Castle visits Beaver. The Red Hurricane finished only one game ahead of the Bobcats for third place last season before Ne-Ca High got hot, went 8-0 in the postseason and won WPIAL and PIAA championships. Beaver won the 4A title in 2019.

In Section 3-4A, Greensburg Salem hosts Elizabeth Forward. The Golden Lions finished one game behind the Warriors for a playoff spot a year ago.

In Section 2-2A, Shenango visits rival Neshannock. The Wildcats won the section a year ago, finishing four games ahead of the Lancers. Shenango went on to win the WPIAL Class 2A title.

In Section 4-2A, Fort Cherry is at Brentwood. The Rangers finished in the fourth and final playoff spot in 2021, one game ahead of the Spartans.

Champ vs. Champ

A pair of Westmoreland County softball rivals coming off strong seasons are scheduled to collide Monday.

Section 2-6A champion Norwin hosts Section 2-5A champion Penn-Trafford.

The Knights cruised to their section crown in 2021, beating Hempfield and Pine-Richland by three games.

Norwin was the No. 2 seed in the 6A playoffs but was stunned in its playoff opener by Canon-McMillan, 7-4.

The Warriors were the top seed in the 5A tournament last year, but they were upset in the quarterfinals by No. 8 seed and eventual champion North Hills, 6-1.

Softball section opener

Among the 24 district softball games scheduled for Monday is one section opener.

Jefferson-Morgan is scheduled to host Monessen in Section 2-A.

The Rockets soared past the Greyhounds in their two meetings last season 9-1 and 11-8.

Those wins were the difference in the fight for fourth place as Jefferson-Morgan qualified for the postseason after finishing two games ahead of Monessen in the standings.

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