At this year's state championships, Trinity Ward showcased just how far she has come from last year and two weeks ago. The Mt. Lebanon sophomore reached states last year and finished seventh in the finals of her premier event, the 100 butterfly. This year at WPIALs two weeks ago, Ward won the 100 butterfly. At the PIAA Class 3A championships this week at Bucknell University, Ward shaved nearly a full second off that WPIAL title to turn her seventh-place finish last year into a first place finish this year. It was the first individual state title for Ward who had to fend off West Chester's Ann Carozza, the top seed in the event. Ward edged her by 0.32 seconds.
Northern State (SD) University scored a run in the first inning, then added two more in the fourth on its way to a 3-0 victory over Pitt-Johnstown, Saturday afternoon in Clermont, Fla.
Allison Rizzo, a Mt. Lebanon graduate, collected a pair of hits for Pitt-Johnstown, which ended its Spring Trip at 5-5.
(photo courtesy of University of Pitt-Johnstown)
Rematches are a common occurrence when teams meet in either the WPIAL or PIAA girls basketball tournament. Such a situation takes place when Mt. Lebanon, the third-place team in Class 6A from the WPIAL, meets WPIAL champion North Allegheny at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Baldwin High School.
Mt. Lebanon participated in the North Allegheny Tip-Off Tournament in early December, but the two teams didn't meet. They, however, did meet in the WPIAL Class 6A semifinals when the Section 3 champions fell to the Tigers, 61-44.
North Allegheny shot 50 percent from the floor in that game, and they converted 11 of 24 3-point attempts. Sophomore standout Rachel Martindale led the Tigers with 22 points. The Tigers led at halftime, 38-18. Mt. Lebanon was held to 32 percent shooting from the floor in that game. Alyssa Hyland led the Blue Devils with 17 points.
Both teams had solid efforts in their opening-round PIAA games this past Friday.
Name: Trinity Ward
School: Mt. Lebanon
Background: It was tough to consider Mt. Lebanon sophomore Trinity Ward a hard-luck competitor at this year's WPIAL championships. Very few swimmers ever at WPIALs had the kind of medal haul she did. Ward, competing in her second ever WPIAL finals, won the 100 butterfly on day one with a time of 55.07. Her time was also less than one second away from the longest-standing WPIAL record still held by Penn Hills alumnus Melanie Buddenmyer (54.16) from 1983. Earlier in the day, Ward led off Mt. Lebanon's winning 200 medley relay. Just as she led off the meet with the medley win, she anchored the final event of the meet, a winning 400 freestyle relay that set a WPIAL record with a time of 3:25.76, beating that of North Allegheny's 2014 time.
Mt. Lebanon and Norwin met in the WPIAL 6A Quarterfinals at Baldwin High School, Friday, February 24. Mt. Lebanon prevailed 47-44 to go on to play North Allegheny in the semifinals at North Hills High School, February 28.
Photos by Marilyn C. Schwilm, Tri-State Sports & News Service