Sports Town will review the 2012-13 school year during July. Today we are visiting the softball season.
Riverside brought a WPIAL softball championship to Beaver County this season and it nearly brought a PIAA championship, as well. The Panthers finished the regular season and WPIAL playoffs undefeated behind senior pitcher Kirsten Wilson, one of the top all-around players in Pennsylvania. Wilson was a dominant pitcher, shutting out 19 of 23 teams, and was also one of the top hitters in the state. The only teams to score on Riverside this year were Mohawk, Deer Lakes and Brandywine Heights. The final team, Brandywine Heights, mustered only one run but it was enough to send Riverside home from the PIAA Class AA final with a silver medal in a 1-0 loss.
Beaver was one of the feel-good stories in the WPIAL this season. The Bobcats, one of the youngest teams in the state, finished third in Class AA Section 5 but mounted upset after upset to reach the WPIAL semifinals.
The WPIAL Class AAA field was dominated by teams from the West Zone. Defending WPIAL champion Montour (12-7, 9-3) qualified for the playoffs, as did Blackhawk (10-7, 6-4), which reached the WPIAL quarterfinals. Ambridge and West Allegheny gave the West Zone two of the four WPIAL semifinalists in Class AAA.
West Allegheny (13-8, 8-4) knocked off section champions Mars and Elizabeth Forward to reach the WPIAL semifinals, and the Indians qualified for the PIAA playoffs with a 5-1 win over West Mifflin in the third-place consolation game. Ambridge (18-5, 9-1) had one of the best postseason runs of anyone playing in seven total games, reaching the WPIAL championship and PIAA semifinals.