WPIAL adopts 2-game series for section baseball schedules, reveals realignment

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Monday, May 18, 2020 | 7:10 PM


The WPIAL adopted a revamped baseball schedule Monday meant to keep teams from pitching their ace twice against the same section opponent.

Now, rather than play every team once and then rematch later in the season, WPIAL baseball teams will play a two-game series on consecutive days against every section opponent.

“Baseball is designed for series, and it creates a great deal of interest,” said North Allegheny athletic director Bob Bozzuto, chairman of the WPIAL baseball committee.

The change requires added strategy because teams must decide how to manage their pitching staffs, he said.

The new format was approved on the same day the WPIAL board released updated baseball and softball section alignments for the 2021 season.

The schedule change affects only baseball. Softball remains the same.

“You’ll see who has the better baseball team,” WPIAL associate executive director Amy Scheuneman said. “A lot of times, the team with the better pitcher used that pitcher both times around. Now, rivals schools will be able to play their No. 1 pitcher against another No. 1 and the No. 2 pitchers against each other.”

The baseball committee also recommended adding three-game semifinal and championship series in the WPIAL postseason, but that suggestion was not approved.

The revamped baseball schedules will be released next week. Softball schedules will arrive this week.

The new section alignments include a number of changes.

In baseball, Class 5A, 3A and 2A expanded from three sections to four. Class 6A shrunk from three sections to two.

The WPIAL gave the baseball committee more freedom this year to decide the number of sections in each classification, Bozzuto said. The smaller sections have better balance, he said.

In softball, Class 5A expanded from three classifications to four.

Basketball qualifiers

Basketball sections with eight teams will receive an extra playoff qualifier next season, the WPIAL board decided Monday.

Sections with seven or fewer teams will receive the customary four qualifiers. Sections with eight teams will receive five.

The rule impacts only three sections overall.

Baseball

Class 6A

Section 1

Allderdice, Butler, Central Catholic, North Allegheny, Pine-Richland, Seneca Valley

Section 2

Baldwin, Canon-McMillan, Hempfield, Mt. Lebanon, Norwin, Upper St. Clair

Class 5A

Section 1

Franklin Regional, Gateway, Kiski Area, Latrobe, McKeesport, Penn-Trafford

Section 2

Armstrong, Fox Chapel, Hampton, Mars, Penn Hills, Plum, Woodland Hills

Section 3

Chartiers Valley, Moon, North Hills, Shaler, South Fayette, West Allegheny

Section 4

Albert Gallatin, Bethel Park, Connellsville, Peters Township, Thomas Jefferson, Trinity

Class 4A

Section 1

Burrell, Freeport, Highlands, Indiana, Knoch, North Catholic

Section 2

Ambridge, Beaver, Blackhawk, Central Valley, Montour, New Castle, Quaker Valley

Section 3

Belle Vernon, Elizabeth Forward, Greensburg Salem, Laurel Highlands, Ringgold, Uniontown, West Mifflin

Class 3A

Section 1

Beaver Falls, Ellwood City, Freedom, Hopewell, Mohawk, New Brighton

Section 2

Avonworth, Keystone Oaks, South Allegheny, South Park, Steel Valley

Section 3

Deer Lakes, Derry, East Allegheny, Ligonier Valley, Mt. Pleasant, Valley

Section 4

Brownsville, Charleroi, McGuffey, Southmoreland, Waynesburg, Yough

Class 2A

Section 1

Bentworth, Beth-Center, California, Carmichaels, Frazier, Washington

Section 2

Aliquippa, Laurel, Neshannock, Riverside, Shenango, South Side, Summit Academy

Section 3

Apollo-Ridge, Jeannette, Northgate, Serra Catholic, Shady Side Academy, Sto-Rox

Section 4

Brentwood, Burgettstown, Carlynton, Chartiers-Houston, Clairton, Fort Cherry, Seton LaSalle

Class A

Section 1

Avella, Cornell, OLSH, Quigley, Rochester, Union, Western Beaver

Section 2

Bishop Canevin, Geibel, Greensburg Central Catholic, Jefferson-Morgan, Mapletown, Monessen, West Greene

Section 3

Eden Christian, Leechburg, Riverview, St. Joseph, Sewickley Academy, Springdale

Softball

Class 6A

Section 1

Baldwin, Bethel Park, Canon-McMillan, Mt. Lebanon, Peters Township

Section 2

Butler, Hempfield, North Allegheny, Norwin, Pine-Richland, Seneca Valley

Class 5A

Section 1

Armstrong, Franklin Regional, Indiana, Kiski Area, Penn Hills, Plum, Woodland Hills

Section 2

Albert Gallatin, Connellsville, Gateway, Latrobe, Penn-Trafford, Thomas Jefferson

Section 3

Fox Chapel, Hampton, Mars, North Hills, Oakland Catholic, Shaler

Section 4

Chartiers Valley, Moon, South Fayette, Trinity, Upper St. Clair, West Allegheny, Western Beaver

Class 4A

Section 1

Burrell, Freeport, Greensburg Salem, Highlands, Knoch, McKeesport

Section 2

Belle Vernon, Elizabeth Forward, Laurel Highlands, Ringgold, Uniontown, West Mifflin, Yough

Section 3

Ambridge, Beaver, Blackhawk, Central Valley, Hopewell, Montour, New Castle

Class 3A

Section 1

Deer Lakes, Derry, East Allegheny, North Catholic, Shady Side Academy, Valley

Section 2

Avonworth, Beaver Falls, Ellwood City, Quaker Valley, South Park

Section 3

Brownsville, McGuffey, Mt. Pleasant, South Allegheny, Southmoreland, Waynesburg

Class 2A

Section 1

Aliquippa, Burgettstown, Carlynton, Chartiers-Houston, Fort Cherry, OLSH, Sto-Rox

Section 2

Apollo-Ridge, Brentwood, Jeannette, Ligonier Valley, Serra Catholic, Seton LaSalle, Steel Valley

Section 3

Bentworth, Beth-Center, California, Carmichaels, Charleroi, Frazier, Washington

Section 4

Freedom, Laurel, Mohawk, Neshannock, New Brighton, Riverside, Shenango

Class A

Section 1

Bishop Canevin, Cornell, Quigley, Rochester, Sewickley Academy, South Side, Union

Section 2

Avella, Geibel, Greensburg Central Catholic, Jefferson-Morgan, Mapletown, Monessen, West Greene

Section 3

Ellis School, Leechburg, Northgate, Riverview, St. Joseph, Springdale

Chris Harlan is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Chris by email at charlan@tribweb.com or via Twitter .

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