Boys Soccer: Belle Vernon nearing outright section title

Written by Brad Everett on .

Belle Vernon has already clinched at least a share of the Class 3A Section 3 title.

A win or tie tonight would give the Leopards the title outright.

Belle Vernon hosts Albert Gallatin in its section finale tonight knowing that earning at least a tie will allow it to finish atop the section all by itself. The Leopards will be heavily favored, too, They routed Albert Gallatin, 10-2, Sept 22. The Colonials have just one section win.

Belle Vernon, ranked No. 5 in 3A by the Post-Gazette, is 11-2 overall and 8-1 in the section. Laurel Highlands and Ringgold are tied for second place with 6-2 records. Those three teams, along with Trinity, will represent the section in the WPIAL playoffs.


Girls Soccer: South Feature Athletes - Belle Vernon’s Maddie and Riley Bitonti

Written by Nicholas Tolomeo on .

Name: Maddie Bitonti and Riley Bitonti
School: Belle Vernon
Grade: 12
Sport: Girls Soccer
Position: Defender/Midfielder

Background: Maddie Bitonti and Riley Bitonti have Belle Vernon opponents seeing double this year. Maddie and Riley are actually triplets. The duo has been integral to the Leopards success this year. Through 14 games, Belle Vernon is 7-5-2 overall and 6-1-2 in Class 3A Section 2. To score against the Leopards, you need to get past both Bitonti sisters. Riley starts in the midfield for Belle Vernon while Maddie is an outside right defender. Maddie is also a senior captain on the team.


Girls Soccer: Plenty still up for grabs for Belle Vernon in section play

Written by Nicholas Tolomeo on .

There are three section contests remaining for Belle Vernon and those three games will determine a lot. The Leopards can finish anywhere from first through fifth in Class 3A Section 2. First place comes with a section title, second through fourth comes with a playoff berth, and fifth comes with nothing. Currently, Mount Pleasant (8-3-2, 7-0-2) is in pole position in the section and Belle Vernon (7-5-2, 6-1-2) has the best chance to unseat the Vikings as section leaders. The teams tied, 2-2, last week in the final regular-season meeting this season.

Belle Vernon is riding a hot streak right now. The Leopards are unbeaten in their last eight games, a stretch in which they have gone 5-0-2.

Coach Dave Richmond has been pleasantly surprised with the performance of his team that saw a lot of transition this offseason. Richmond is in his first season with the team that graduated nine seniors last year including five who are playing in college right now. In addition, Belle Vernon moved up to Class 3A.

The Leopards regular season comes down to three more section games against Elizabeth Forward (5-6-4, 4-3-3), Uniontown (3-10, 1-8) and Laurel Highlands (6-5-2, 5-3-1).


Girls Soccer: South Feature Athlete - Belle Vernon's Lexi Demko

Written by Nicholas Tolomeo on .

Name: Lexi Demko
School: Belle Vernon
Grade: 11
Sport: Girls Soccer
Position: Midfielder

Background: Belle Vernon has one of the top 1-2 punches up top in an offensive formation in the section. With Sierra Lynn, the Leopards have the quickness and with junior midfielder Lexi Demko, they have the finesse. Lynn is a track star while Demko is a year-round soccer player who plays on the cup circuit. Demko is a returning starter for a Belle Vernon team that is hitting its stride at the right time. The Leopards have won three games in a row and have scored 14 goals in the process.


Alumni Update - McKenna Keffel (Indiana Pa.)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. – Senior goalkeeper Jessica Printz (Fairfax, Va./WT Woodson) recorded her third consecutive win via shutout of asKeffel IUP the IUP women's soccer team defeated Pitt-Johnstown 3-0 on Saturday afternoon at UPJ Soccer Field.


With the win, the Crimson Hawks improve to 6-3 overall and 5-2 in Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) play. Meanwhile, the Mountain Cats fall to 0-8 overall behind an 0-8 league record.

IUP started the scoring early as freshman McKenna Keffel, a Belle Vernon graduate, tallied her first goal of the season off a breakaway from midfield at the 14:31-mark.


(photo courtesy of Indiana Pa.)