Sports Town will review the 2011-12 school year during July. Today we are visiting the field hockey season.
Shady Side Academy had an outstanding season in 2011, and the Indians have high hopes for the 2012 season.
The Indians raced through their Class AA schedule with an unblemished 12-0 record. In the WPIAL semifinals, the Indians rolled to a 3-0 victory over Greensburg Central Catholic. Shady Side then defeated The Ellis School, 2-1, in the WPIAL championship game. It was the 11th time the Indians had won a WPIAL championship -- the most among Class AA schools.
Shady Side then advanced to the PIAA Class AA playoffs where the Indians notched a 3-0 win over District 6 champion Belleville Mennonite. But the end came for the 18-1-1 Indians when they fell to District 3 champion Palmyra in the PIAA quarterfinals. The score was 3-0 (Palmyra).
Audrey Koi scored a team-leading 27 goals for the Indians a year ago and she will be back for her senior season. Also returning are seniors Isabel Aiken, Cristina Bartolcacci, Carianne Lee, Sydney Mordoh, Gabriel Rubio and Micky Saperstein. Returning juniors include Lucy Buckman, Simone Scanga and Abigail Spear. Two sophomores, Olivia Stokes and Gabrielle Harchelroad will return. Harchelroad will be key to the team's development; she succeeds Erin Gorse in goal. Gorse is playing this season at Villanova University.
North Allegheny's Thieret had outstanding senior season in 2011. Carley Thieret hopes to have a stellar field-hockey career for the Kent State Golden Flashes. There's no doubt that she established a solid foundation with a terrific four-year career at North Allegheny High.
Thieret, a midfielder, scored 31 goals and added 14 assists for a Tigers' team that finished the season with a 3-0 loss to Penn-Trafford in the WPIAL championship game. North Allegheny's 2011 final record was 14-5. Thieret finished her career with 48 goals. The even more remarkable statistic is that Thieret didn't score one goal as a sophomore -- she played left midfield in place of Lauren Shideler. (Shideler had missed that entire season with a concussion.)
"It shows how focused she is and how selfless she played," said North Allegheny coach Jen Diaz. "She played where the team needed her, and she gave it her all."
Seven other players graduated with Thieret. The rest of the team (13 total) will return.
The Tigers tied with Penn Trafford for first place in Class AAA, Section 1. The teams had identical 9-1 records. Interestingly, the Tigers earned a 5-0 victory over the host Warriors after Penn Trafford had earned a shocking 2-1 overtime victory over the host Tigers. The goal differential allowed North Allegheny to have homefield advantage in the playoffs.
In the playoffs, North Allegheny edged Section 2 runner-up Fox Chapel 2-0 in the Class AAA semifinal. But the Tigers fell to Penn Trafford 3-0 in the championship game.
It was Penn-Trafford's first WPIAL championship.
Fox Chapel falls in Class AAA semifinal: Fox Chapel High's field hockey team had a solid season in 2011. The Foxes placed second in Class AAA, Section 2 with an 8-2 record and qualified for the WPIAL playoffs (Fox Chapel was the No. 2 team from their section). Two losses to section champion Woodland Hills blemished the Foxes' record.
Fox Chapel advanced to the WPIAL semifinals where they lost to host North Allegheny, 2-1. The Tigers then lost to Penn Trafford 3-0 in the WPIAL championship game. Penn Trafford advanced after capturing a 2-0 victory at Woodland Hills in the other Class AAA semifinal.