WPIAL Boys Volleyball Playoff Recaps for Tuesday, May 22nd

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Wednesday, May 23, 2012 | 1:17 AM


The Final Four in WPIAL Boys Volleyball was filled with excitement as one defending champ was knocked out while a dynasty nearly came to an end. Plus, another legitimate contender to the crown was eliminated from the golden chase. Here are recaps from all four WPIAL boys volleyball Semifinals played on Tuesday night.

WPIAL CLASS AAA SEMIFINALS:

North Allegheny Tigers 3 – Bethel Park Black Hawks 2
Number one seed and five time defending champion North Allegheny came back from a 2 set to one deficit and defeated Bethel Park 3-2 to move on to the WPIAL finals which will take place Friday night.  Scores were 25-20, 22-25, 21-25, 25-16, 15-9.  Bethel Park gave North Allegheny everything they could handle and then some.    Bethel Park's trio of Mitchell Pierson, Grant Underwood and Bobby Huntington played spectacular with many kills and aces.  Underwood was really strong in game 2 with 3 aces.  Bethel park would not lead by more than 4 points in the first two games but managed to split.  In game three they jumped out to a 12-5 lead but North Allegheny came charging back to cut the lead to 20-19.  Zach Shaw really stood out for NA during the run but Grant Underwood would close things out in Game 3.  Game 4 started tight with NA leading 11-8 but then they would score the next 6 out of 8 points to take a commanding lead and win game 4.    Game 5 was tied at 6 before Shaw and Keisling took charge with 6 kills between them and NA cruised to a 5 set victory.  Tommy Kiesling unofficially had 23 kills and 4 aces while Zach Shaw had 15 kills.  North Allegheny will now play Norwin Friday at 8pm for the AAA championship while Bethel park will play Seneca Valley in the consolation match Friday for the 3rd seed for the upcoming state playoffs.

Norwin Knights 3 – Seneca Valley Raiders 1
Norwin defeated Seneca Valley by scores of 25-21, 26-24, 12-25 and 25-20 on Tuesday to move into the AAA championship match this Friday night.  Norwin was pretty in much control in game one jumping out to a 8-4 lead  and really did not look back winning the set.  Norwin led 16-10 in game 2 before Seneca Valley would bounce back and tie the score at 19-19 Seneca Valley was down 24-21 when Chad Albert recorded a kill and Norwin committed 2 unforced errors which would tie the score at 24-24 but Norwin's Chad Brough mad the kill and Seneca valley would hit into the net and Norwin would win game 2.  Seneca Valley cruised in game 3 thanks to the strong play of Chad Albert and Brad Pudlo.  Norwin would respond in game 4 in a back and forth set Norwin would score the last 4 points for the victory.  Unofficially Nate Derry had 8 kills and 4 blocks and Nick Idele had 10 kills and 6 blocks for Norwin.  Seneca Valley's Alex Berner had 8 kills and 2 aces and Brian Pudlo also had 8 kills and 2 aces.  Norwin will now take on North Allegheny Friday night while Seneca Valley will meet with Bethel Park for 3rd place.

WPIAL CLASS AA SEMIFINALS:

Ambridge Bridgers 3 – Montour Spartans 0
At North Allegheny high school in boys WPIAL boys AA Volleyball semi finals the number one seeded Ambridge Bridgers defeat the fourth seeded Montour Spartans by a 3-0 match score. It wasn't a difficult night for the Bridgers as the won game one 25-18. The first game was even as both teams played well and it was competitive. However at 17-15 the Bridgers took control and score 8 of the last 11 point to win it. Game two the Bridgers win 25-17 and it was a replica of game one. An even game that saw nine ties Ambridge took the lead for good at 12-11. At 18-17 they went on a roll and score the last 7 points to win it. In game three a tired Spartan team held tough, but at 5-5 the Bridgers took control and never trailed. They jumped out to 13-10, and from that pointscpred 11 of the last 17 points to win in going away. At times the Bridgers made things look easy as they got contributions from the super Sophomores. Outside hitters Brandon Buck, Lee Smith and Dan Zajac. All three have emense talent and take the game over at times. The Bridgers with one senior leader Justin Gleason the setter are a young and deep squad. Junior's Nick Santiago, Andrew Stojan and Cody Brook add to the mix and the Bridgers are poised to fight for another WPIAL title. Head coach Glenn Freed in his 12th year with the program and second as head coach said  "its a matter of confidence, we have a lot of talent and each of the kids contributes" The Bridgers will face the Derry Trojans on Friday night at Chartiers Valley high school. They improve to 12-2 overall. The Spartans fall to 11-3 and will face the Deer Lakes Lancers in a consolation game for the right to play in the PIAA state playoffs.

Derry Trojans 3 – Deer Lakes Lancers 1
At North Allegheny High School in WPIAL AA Boys Volleyball semi final action, the Derry Trojans the number three seed defeat the number two seeded Deer Lakes Lancers by a 3-1 match score. Deer lakes the defending champ played well in game one and had great net defense with Sean McTigue, Tony Nicotra, and Kody Buttyan all 6' 3" or taller defending the net. It worked for most of game one as the Lancers led most of the game. Derry would tie the game at 8-8 and at that point the Lancers crept ahead but could never get more than a few points ahead. Derry would battle back and tie again at 17-17. From this point they traded points. Each time the Lancers scored, the Trojans would answer. This went on for the next 14 points. Incredible rally's and saves for both teams were accompanied by Service errors, and mistakes. Neither team played well A 24-24 Derry won the next point on a furious rally that lasted more than a minute. Then at game point Deer Lakes looked confused and made two crucial errors and lost 26-24. Derry  only led 1-0, 2-1, and 25-24, and wins 26-24. The Lancers blew a chance to put the Trojans away in game one but couldn't. In game two the Lancers  would get great setting from Zach Guiciardi, and again great outside hitting by Nicotra and  lead again most of the way. This time at 22-17 they traded points again but the Lancers held on for the win 25-22. Derry's Andy Panizzi, and matt Vasinko had strong games to keep the Trojans alive thru out the game. In game three Deer lakes early and the game was close. The two teams were tied 8 times and  the Lancers would lose the lead after 11-11. Derry took control as Sr Jeremy Houser a 6' 0" outside hitter with incredible jumping ability took over. His kills, defense in the back court and overall athleticism were outstanding. Derry never trailed again and eventually won 25-20  to go up 2-1. In game 4 Derry had control early and took a huge lead at 17-6. A combination of lancer errors, and Houser's amazing play had the Trojans up big. But the defending champions wouldn't go easy. They fought back scoring 14 of 18  to get within 1 at 21-20 and looked poised to tie it at 2-2. However Derry held on and won it scoring  the last 5 points to win 25-21. The Trojans improve to 15-1 and will face the Ambridge Bridgers on Friday night at Chartiers Valley high school in the AA championship. Deer Lakes falls to 12-2 and will face Montour on Friday night in a consolation game for the right to go to the PIAA state championships.

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