WPIAL Girls Volleyball Quarterfinals Recaps 2013

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Tuesday, October 29, 2013 | 11:09 PM


Most of the top seeds were able to survive Round Two and move on to the Final Four. However Pine-Richland, Thomas Jefferson and Shenango were not so fortunate as they were upset Tuesday night. Here are recaps from the Quarterfinals of the 2013 WPIAL Girls Volleyball Playoffs as twelve teams advance to the district Semifinals.

Thanks to Pete Blais, Bob Orkwis, Sean Meyers, Lee Mohn, Mark Schaas and Mike Azadian for their help on these recaps.

WPIAL CLASS AAA Quarterfinals:

North Allegheny Tigers 3 – Hempfield Spartans 0 
The top-seeded North Allegheny Tigers defeated the Hempfield Spartans, 3-0, on Tuesday night and will advance to the WPIAL Class AAA semifinals. Scores of the sets were 27-25, 25-18, 25-17. The Tigers got off to a slow start after a long lay-off due to the first round bye they received for the playoffs.  Hempfield hung around with the Tigers all game long as NA never led by more than three points. The Spartans received strong play from Maddie Holmbers while the Tigers Danielle Wall and Erin Swartz had four kills and Ashley Leto and Meg Morningstar had three kills apiece. The Spartans hung tough in game two as well, with neither team leading by more than two points.  The Tigers led 15-13, and the strong play from Wall and setter Beth Muhlenkamp increased the lead and carried NA to victory. In set three, the depth and height took over as the Tigers pulled away midway through to complete the sweep. The Tigers will now face the Norwin Knights in the WPIAL semifinals on Thursday night.  You will be able to listen to the match right here on the North Allegheny Sports Network and the MSA Sports network. Start time is slated for 7:30 pm from Chartiers Valley High School.

Norwin Knights 3 – Seneca Valley Raiders 2 
The Norwin Nights fought back from a two game deficit to defeat the Seneca Valley Raiders Tuesday night 3-2. Scores of the games were 16-25, 18-25, 25-22, 25-16, 15-13.  The first two games were controlled by the Raiders.  Each game was close to about mid point and the Raiders would pull away.  The Raiders got strong play from Morgan Chapman and Abigail Trzeciak and setter Lindsay Holbaugh  The third game the tide began to switch towards the Knights.  Norwin would jump out to a 13-6 lead receiving strong play from Catherine Ferragonio and very good defensive play from Reilly Parker.  The Raiders would battle back to cut the lead to one but Norwin would would force a game four. The Raiders regained the momentum in game four jumping out to a 13-7 lead gut that is things got going for Norwin.  They found out Catherine Ferragonio could not miss and carried the Knights to victory in game four.  Ferragonio helped Norwin turn a 15-12 deficit into a 24-15 advantage scoring nine straight points during that stretch.  Gane five was nip and tuck all the way.  Both teams made numerous unforced errors as neither team led by more than two points.  With the score tied at 13-13 Norwin would get a point from Ferraggonio and Seneca valley would hit the last point into the net to give the Knoghts the victory.  Norwin will now face #1 seeded North Allegheny on Thursday night a game you can hear on the MSA Sports network.

Bethel Park Black Hawks 3 – Pine-Richland Rams 0 
The seventh seeded Black Hawks pull the upset of the night, dumping the number 2 seed Rams at North Hills in three straight. Bethel Park took over control midway thru the first game, using a seven point run to go up 12-8. They would extend the lead on the play of senior Stacey Kazalas, who had seven of her game high 19 kills in the 25-19 opening game.The Black Hawks used the same formula in Game 2, getting out to an early lead, which forced the Rams to play catch-up again. Kazalas added seven more kills in the second and senior Morgan Stelmaszynski had the Rams back line off balance with her serves, she ended with six aces on the night, the Blackhawks finished with 14 on the night. Pine Richland cut the score to 23-20 but after a timeout, Bethel Park scored the final two points to win 25-20. Bethel Park used an 8-2 lead to start the final game, but Pine Richland fought back as Sidney Schnieder ran off six straight points on her serve to give the Rams a one point lead at 19-18. Bethel Park had a one point lead at 24-23, it looked like the game was going to be extended when Kazalas pounded a kill well over the end line, but the officials after a brief hesitation, ruled the ball was tipped at the net by Pine-Richland, giving the Black Hawks the point and the match. Bethel Park meets Shaler in one Class AAA semifinal on Thursday at Char Valley. The Black Hawks got seven kills  and four aces from junior Olivia Schanck. Pine Richland was led by Gabrielle Olson with nine kills, Kristi Chenarides had seven kills and Katherine Quigley notched three aces.

Shaler Titans 3 – Penn-Trafford Warriors 1 
The Titans had made seven trips to the quarterfinals in the last ten seasons but had never advanced past that point, that is until now. Shaler used an amazing comeback after dropping the first game to defeat Penn-Trafford and move on to the Class AAA quarterfinals on Thursday. Penn-Trafford took the first game 25-11 using two scoring runs of seven points to take a huge lead and not look back. The Warriors led 5-1 in the second game and look to be cruising and that is when Julia Bernesser took over for Shaler. The sophomore had four of her eight kills in the second game, pacing the Titans to a 27-25 victory.The third game was a carbon copy of the second, the Warriors led 7-2 but Shaler hung tough with Bernesser and Annie Bozzo taking over again. Bozzo had four aces and led both teams with 16 kills. After a 16-all tie, the Titans racked up nine straight points to take the third game 25-16. In the fourth game, the Titans led 12-10 and 15-11 before Liz Kline ran off seven straight points. The junior had eight kills and five aces, Shaler took the deciding game 25-13. Penn Trafford was led by Angela Tarabrella with 11 kills, Alex Heiman addd five.

WPIAL CLASS AA Quarterfinals:

Indiana Little Indians 3 – Elizabeth Forward Warriors 0 
Top seeded Indiana remained perfect on the season, defeating Elizabeth Forward in 3 games – 25-15, 25-20 and 25-17 at Fox Chapel High School to advance to the WPIAL Class AA Girls Volleyball Semifinals for the second straight year. The Indians and the Warriors were tied at 10-10 in the first game before Indiana opened up the contest with a big run. “I don’t know why, Indiana head coach Malinda Oesterling said after the match, “but we were a bit nervy tonight.” An 11-0 run in game number one calmed those nerves as the Indians opened up a 22-10 lead and never looked back. The run was keyed largely by the service points won by junior Kylie McKirgan. The second game was the tightest of the match, as the teams battled back and forth. Elizabeth Forward tied the game at 7-all, 14-14 and again at 16, before Indiana scored 9 of the games last 13 points to win by five. The ties were as close as the Warriors would get as EF never lead in any game. The Indians jumped out quickly in game three, opening up with a 6-0 start as Elizabeth Forward never got closer than 5-points in the 25-17 match clincher. Indiana’s hitters were consistently good throughout the match. The Indians got contributions at the net from seniors Aaryn Gray, Natalie Cignetti, Helena Dadson and junior Zoe Zahorchak in the win. Elizabeth Forward was led by a pair of seniors, middle hitter Corri Waters and libero Mikayla Ambler. The victory improved Indiana’s record on the season to (16-0). The Warriors season ends at (11-3). As mentioned, it’s the second consecutive trip to the Class AA semifinals for Indiana, who will face #3 Hopewell on Thursday night at North Hills High School. The Vikings defeated Seton-LaSalle (3-1) to qualify for the semifinals for the 4th straight year. Last year the Vikings and Indians matched up the semi-finals, although Hopewell was the #1 seed and Indiana was seeded third. Hopewell defeated Indiana (3-1) to advance to the 2012 finals before losing to Mars. Match time is set for 7:30 PM on Thursday and the game will be carried live on the MSA Sports Network. Incidentally, all four AA semifinalists have qualified to represent the WPIAL in the upcoming PIAA playoffs.

Hopewell Vikings 3 – Seton-LaSalle Rebels 1 
There were only three losses between the Hopewell Vikings and the Seton LaSalle Rebels going into their quarterfinal match Tuesday night at Chartiers Valley High School.  On paper, things looked like this would be an evenly contested matchup.  The first game resembled this scenario as both teams traded points and serves throughout before the Vikings pulled away to win, 25-21.  Hopewell certainly built upon that momentum in Game 2 as they completely dominated the Rebels en route to a 25-12 victory, taking advantage of a number of Seton-LaSalle unforced errors as well as paying great defense.  Knowing their backs were to the wall, the Rebels gained their sense of urgency with a complete reversal of fortune, taking advantage of Hopewell’s tendency to relax and completely dominating the Vikings in Game 3, winning 25-13 and cutting the Vikings’ lead to 2-1 in the match.  Both teams would go back and forth in Game 4, exchanging points and leads at every turn.  The Rebels were well on their way to tying the match at 2 apiece at 19-16 when a serve into the net completely disrupted their momentum.  Hopewell seized on that mistake by going on a 7-0 run to build a 23-19 lead and proceeding to win Game 4 and the match 25-23 and 3-1 respectively.  Seton-LaSalle ends their season t 11-3 and misses out on a PIAA berth with the loss.  Six seniors for the Rebels played their final match of their high school careers, those being Lindsey Farley, Toni and Tia Torchia, Shelby Williams Juliana Ross, and Brianna Colligan.  The Hopewell Vikings advance to the semifinals and earn a spot in the PIAA State Playoffs.  They will face the Indiana Little Indians in the semis of the WPIAL playoffs, who knocked off Elizabeth Forward in the quarterfinal round.  Hopewell’s record stands currently at 13-1.

Freeport Yellowjackets 3 – Central Valley Warriors 1 
The Freeport girls’ volleyball team triumphed in the Class AA quarterfinals with a 3-1 victory over Central Valley at Fox Chapel High School on Tuesday. The No. 2 seed Yellowjackets prevailed 12-25, 25-17, 25-15, 25-18 to advance to the semifinals. The No. 7 seed Warriors took the opening set in convincing fashion behind the strong play of senior Seairra Barrett. In the second set, the Yellowjackets overcame a slow start to take their first lead of the match, 8-7, in the midst of a 6-0 run. Freeport senior Alexis Schrecengost turned the momentum in favor of the Yellowjackets with her strong serving skills, and Freeport never surrendered the lead the rest of the set. Freeport controlled the play for most of the third and fourth sets. Zoe Pawlak sealed the victory in the final set for the Yellowjackets by netting her team’s final six points on the service. Jessica Kelley also played a key role in the success of the Yellowjackets. Freeport will return to action at 6 p.m. on Thursday, when the Yellowjackets square off against section rival Knoch at North Hills.

Knoch Knights 3 – Thomas Jefferson Jaguars 1 
At Chartiers Valley High School in girls AA quarter final Volleyball playoff action the 6th seeded Knoch Knights defeat the 3rd seed Thomas Jefferson Jaguars 3-1. Game scores were 25-22, 25-23, 18-25, and 25-19. The Knights are a tremendous defensive team and it showed as they held off a much taller TJ squad in the first two games. Neither team would lead by more than 3 points and game one saw 10 ties, and 5 lead changes. The Jaguars made too many mistakes for a tight game with 4 serve violations, and the Knights got great serving from Emily Zilka and Knoch came back to win 25-22 after trailing 20-19 in game one. In game two it was tied 10 times and TJ looked to even the match. They led 22-20 but the Knights called time out. Knoch would score 6 of the final 7 points to win 25-23. In game three it was all Jaguars as Rachel Stover on the Right side of the front of the net was dominant , and the defense of Robert  Morris recruit Allie Yurkovich were too much for the Knights and TJ had a rather easy 25-18 win.In game 4, Knoch led thru out and gained a 13-9 lead. They’re biggest of any game. The teams traded points until at 22-19 the Knights scored the final three to win 25-19. The Knights were led all nite by Sr star and Eastern Kentucky recruit Celina Sanks. Her tremendous offensive skill and non stop defense were too much for the Jaguars. The Knights improve to 14-1 overall and will face section 4 rival Freeport on Thursday in the semi finals at North Hills high school. Thomas Jefferson falls to 13-1 with their first loss of the season.

WPIAL CLASS A Quarterfinals:

Bishop Canevin Crusaders 3 – Serra Catholic Eagles 0 
The Bishop Canevin Crusaders took down the Serra Catholic Eagles in impressive fashion, winning the match in straight sets. The first set was tied at 4-4 when the Crusaders went on a 21-3 tear for the win. The Eagles kept the next two sets close but the Crusaders never relinquished their control for long during either game. They won the next two sets 25-19 and 25-18. Erin Cunningham was key to the Bishop Canevin’s success. The sophomore outside hitter was dominant from both her attack position and when serving. Bishop Canevin’s season will continue to the semifinal round this Thursday night when they travel to North Allegheny High School to take on Neshannock at 7:30 PM. The game will be broadcast live on the MSA Sports Network.

Neshannock Lancers 3 – Shenango Wildcats 2
#4-seed Shenango was in control in the early part of the match, but Neshannock just kept fighting back for a five-game victory. All sets were very close and each team was matching the other point for point throughout the entire match. The win advances the #12-seed Lancers to the WPIAL Girls Volleyball Semfinals for the very first time where they will face top-seed Bishop Canevin on Thursday here on MSA Sports.

Greensburg Central Catholic Centurions 3 – Carlynton Cougars 0 
Greensburg Central Catholic Centurions defeated the Carlynton Cougars three sets to none at Baldwin High School Tuesday night to advance to the Class A semifinals.  The Cougars jumped out to an early 15-7 lead in the first set but Greensburg went on a 11-1 run to take control and eventually win the set, 25-23. Greensburg used their comeback effort in set one to power their way through the next two sets as well, winning both by scores of 25-19 and 25-17, respectively. Megan Stunja, the Centurions kills leader this year, and Leah Bisignani, both recorded multiple kills throughout the night and their presence in front helped solidify a number of points as well. The defending champion Centurions move on to the semis to face Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Thursday night at North Allegheny High School at 6 PM. You can hear the match as well on the MSA Sports Network.

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