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Alumni Update – Jessie Thiessen (Allegheny College)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

CLEVELANDTwo Allegheny student-athletes have been named North Coast Athletic Conference Players of the Week for actionThiessen AC during the week of Oct. 12. Sophomore Jessie Thiessen has been named the NCAC Women's Soccer of the Week, while junior Jimmy Lasher was tabbed the NCAC's Men's Golfer of the Week.


Thiessen, who earns the honor for the third time in her career, helped lead the Gators to a pair of NCAC victories on the week.  


In Tuesday's 2-0 shutout of Oberlin, the sophomore forward scored the game's first goal in the 21st minute, before assisting on Tori Delzer's insurance marker with seven minutes remaining in regulation. Thiessen followed that performance up by racking a career-high three assists in the Gators' 5-0 Homecoming win over Ohio Wesleyan on Saturday afternoon.  


On the season, the Fox Chapel graduate now leads the Gators with 19 points, with six goals and a conference-leading seven assists.  


This marks the second Player of the Week honor bestowed upon a Gator women's soccer player this season, as senior goalie Gabby Curtis earned the laurel on Sept. 29.

 

(photo courtesy of Allegheny College)

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Alumni Update – Emily Rabenold (Grove City)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

Rabenold, a Hampton graduate, placed sixth out of 341 runners Saturday at the Oberlin College Inter-Regional Rumble.Rabenold GC

She posted a time of 22:19.1 for six kilometers. 

(photo courtesy of Grove City College)

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Alumni Update - Chris Page (Saint Vincent)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

GREENVILLE, Pa. - Sophomore Chris Page, a Mars graduate, scored in the 75th minute to push the Saint Vincent men's soccer team toPage SVC a 3-2 road victory at Thiel in Presidents' Athletic Conference action.

(photo courtesy of Saint Vincent College)

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Alumni Update - Andy Borgen (Saint Vincent)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

Thomas More used three unanswered touchdowns in the second quarter to pull away, then went on to defeat Saint Vincent by a score ofBorgen SVC 49-7.

 

For the Bearcats, Andy Borgen, a Pine-Richland graduate, finished 10-17 for 87 yards through the air.

 

(photo courtesy of Saint Vincent College)

 

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Girls Tennis: Shady Side Academy rebounds with easy win

Written by Ryan Riordan on .

Last week, Shady Side Academy placed second in the WPIAL Class AAA tournament for the fourth straight season with a 4-1 loss to North Allegheny.

But the Indians bounced back in a big way Tuesday with a 5-0 win against DuBois. Shady Side Academy will play District 1 champion West Chester Henderson in the quarterfinals Friday at 8 a.m. at Hershey Racquet Club. West Chester Henderson was a PIAA semifinalist last season.

The Indians, who lost in the state quarterfinals last season, is looking to get back to the PIAA final for the first time since 2011 and win its first state title since 2010.

A WPIAL team has won the PIAA Class AAA girls tennis state championship eight straight seasons and 12 of the past 14. 

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Girls Tennis: Sewickley advances to quarters

Written by Ryan Riordan on .

Sewickley Academy, which won its first WPIAL title since 2011 last week with a win against Indiana, had no problem in its first-round state tournament match Tuesday.

The Panthers took down District 5 champion, Bedford, 4-1, at Lakevue Athletic Club.

Sewickley now will play Scranton Prep, the District 2 champion, in the quarterfinals. Scranton Prep beat District 4 champion Hughesville, 4-0, in the first round.

Scranton Prep was the PIAA runner-up last season, losing to Mercyhurst Prep in the championship match. Sewickley lost to Mercyhurst in the semifinals in the 2013 state tournament. 

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Hockey: Rupprecht shining for title contender Deer Lakes

Written by Ryan Riordan on .

Since returning from a one-year hiatus two years ago, Deer Lakes has steadily climbed the ladder in Class A.

This season, the Lancers look like a real title threat.

Deer Lakes is 3-1, including a 13-2 victory over 2014 Penguins Cup runner-up Thomas Jefferson last Thursday.

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Girls Tennis: North Allegheny looking for back-to-back titles

Written by Ryan Riordan on .

 

Last season, North Allegheny was a tiebreak away from leaving the PIAA tournament in the quarterfinals.

But the Tigers’ top player in 2013, Maddy Adams, prevailed at No. 1 singles to give North Allegheny a 3-2 victory over Conestoga, and the Tigers went on to win their next two matches to notch the program’s second state championship.

North Allegheny will head back to Hershey this weekend with an undefeated record and the knowledge of what to expect at states.

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Hockey: Drop down in classification agreeing with Shaler

Written by Ryan Riordan on .

Shaler had its ups and downs last season in Class AAA, just eking into the playoffs.

So far in Class AA this season, the Titans have been one of the most dominant teams.

Shaler is 2-1 and has outscored its opposition, 20-8. A 12-2 win over a talented Plum squad in its last game has a lot to do with the big goal differential.

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Girls Tennis: North Feature Athlete – North Allegheny’s Tina Li

Written by Ryan Riordan on .

Name: Tina Li
School: North Allegheny
Grade: 10
Sport: Tennis

Background: Li is the No. 2 singles player for the undefeated Tigers, who will play in the PIAA Class AAA team tournament this weekend in Hershey. She missed the start of the season due to a foot injury, came back at first in doubles before moving up the lineup singles behind only her twin sister, Anna. Tina Li will also head to Hershey next weekend for the PIAA Class AAA doubles tournament, which she’ll play with Eugenia Lee.

North Allegheny coach Michelle Weniger: “It was huge [getting Tina back in the lineup]. It was a like a great Christmas present to have someone that talented and experienced back. In tennis, when you have someone missing at the top of your lineup missing, everyone else has to move up a spot and they’re big steps.”

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Craig Meyer's North High School Football Notebook (Oct. 23, 2014)

Written by Craig Meyer on .

Here's this week's edition of Craig Meyer's North High School Football Notebook.

"Stuck in a conference featuring two preseason top five teams in Class AAAA and two more that would make it there as the season progressed, the promise of a WPIAL playoff berth for the Fox Chapel football team admittedly had to appear bleak.

At a school that excels in several sports, the Foxes had struggled on the gridiron for years, a spell filled with losing records and seasons that ended near (or at) the bottom of the Northern Eight Conference standings.

With just one game remaining in the 2014 regular season, though, that script has been flipped and those expectations have changed. What would have raised more than a few eyebrows in the preseason is now a reality — Fox Chapel is headed to the playoffs."

 

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Football: Hampton is just a win away from perfect regular season

Written by Justin Criado on .

Justin Criado profiles the Hampton football team.

"Hampton is currently 8-0 and one victory away from completing its second undefeated regular season in the past 15 years, but the Talbots aren't necessarily perfect, according to coach Jacque DeMatteo.

"We're not perfect by any means," DeMatteo said. "The films show it. Films don't lie. The kids realize that."

Coachspeak aside, Hampton is winning games convincingly in a conference that features perennial powers Gateway and Franklin Regional, both teams the Talbots have defeated, by the way."

 

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Boys Soccer: Sewickley wins with a new lineup

Written by Nicholas Tolomeo on .

Nicholas Tolomeo profiles the Sewickley Academy boys soccer team.

"As his team celebrated their PIAA Class A title last season, Sewickley Academy boys soccer coach Jim Boone could not help but notice that 12 of his players wearing PIAA gold medals around their necks were seniors.

He also could not help but to think forward to the next season.

Despite losing 12 seniors including 11 starters, Boone saw a bright future.

Boone is in his third season as head varsity coach at Sewickley Academy but prior to that he was coaching the seventh and eighth grade team and he was well aware of the incoming talent."

 

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Girls Soccer: Shady Side Academy reloads, gets No. 2 seed in playoffs

Written by Nicholas Tolomeo on .

Nicholas Tolomeo profiles the Shady Side Academy girls soccer team.

"Shady Side Academy finished second in Section 4-A this season, but when the WPIAL announced Class A playoff pairings, it was seeded second overall in Class A.

The seeding was just as much a testament to the strength of the section as well as the strength of the Indians. The defending WPIAL Class A champion and preseason No. 1, Shady Side Academy (15-3, 12-2) shook off two losses in its first three games to put together a strong resume to earn the No. 2 seed.

Shady Side Academy lost both section contests to Greensburg Central Catholic, which won the Section 4-A title outright and earned the top seed, but after the second loss to the Centurions, the Indians caught fire, winning their final eight regular-season games, including shutting out their final seven opponents."

 

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Girls Tennis: After two-year drought, Sewickley is back on top

Written by Keith Barnes on .

Keith Barnes profiles the Sewickley Academy girls tennis team.

2014 1023 Sewickley GTennis(Photo: Sewickley Academy sophomore Emily Ward won her No. 2 singles match in the WPIAL Class AA girls team tennis championships. Pam Panchak/Post-Gazette)

"There was a certain level of consternation when the Sewickley Academy girls' tennis team took the court at The Club in Monroeville for the WPIAL Class AA team final last Thursday.

After all, the top-seeded Panthers were pushed to the brink of elimination in the semifinals by defending champion Greensburg Central Catholic and they were staring at an upstart sixth-ranked Indiana team that had already knocked off third-seeded South Park and No. 2 Beaver in their previous two rounds.

Sewickley Academy had also had its problems coming up with wins in the finals. Despite qualifying for the finals each of the previous six years, the team had won three times and had taken home silver each of the previous two seasons.

"When you start losing, I think it commands the girls' attention more and this happened to be a deep team and it took a long time to come together in terms of positioning," Sewickley Academy coach Whitney Snyder said. "But these girls had impressive wins over Triple-A teams such as Peters Township and Fox Chapel. So when you see that, you think, 'OK, this is good.'""

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Girls Volleyball: Freeport earns top seed in playoffs

Written by Ken Wunderley on .

Ken Wunderley profiles the Freeport girls volleyball team. Read his story below.

2014 1023 Freeport GVolleyball(Photo: Freeport's Zoe Pawlak is one of the top high school volleyball players in the WPIAL. A junior outside hitter, she was the Class AA player of the year in 2013. J.J. LaBella/Tri-State Sports & News Service)

The Jeopardy answer is: "The girls volleyball program that has made the most appearances in the WPIAL finals in the past five years.

The Jeopardy question is: "Who are the Freeport Yellowjackets?"

Freeport has made four appearances in the WPIAL Class AA title match in the past five years. The Yellowjackets won titles in 2010 and '13, and placed second in '09 and '11.

Another title match appearance is likely, as Freeport enters this season's playoffs as a strong favorite to repeat.

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Football: North Top Games - Week 9 (2014)

Written by John D'Abruzzo on .

Here's a look at three of the top games involving North teams in Week 9.

Mars (5-3, 4-3) at Hampton (8-0, 7-0), Friday, 7 p.m. - Fridley Field will host to this Greater Allegheny Conference rivalry. Mars needs to win in order to make the playoffs, while the No. 4-ranked Talbots have already locked up the conference title. Undefeated Hampton has been rolling with its high-powered offense and strong defensive front all year. The Talbots are outscoring opponents by an average of 34.1-9.8 and enter this game after earning a 28-14 win last week against Greensburg Salem. Hampton running back Matt Rech rushed for 114 yards and a touchdown, while quarterback Nick Grabowski rushed for a pair of scores. Alex Bianco also chipped in with a rushing touchdown. Mars has won four of its past five games and rebounded from its loss to Knoch two weeks ago with a 21-0 shutout last Friday against Hollidaysburg. Quarterback Jake Rosswog threw for 111 yards and two touchdowns. John Castello and Robby Carmody each caught touchdown passes from Rosswog. Paul King added a rushing score. The Planets are outscoring opponents by an average of 30.9-10.4. Mars has beaten Hampton the past four seasons, including a 42-20 decision last year.

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Football: North Feature Athlete - Pine-Richland's Mike Merhaut

Written by John D'Abruzzo on .

Name: Mike Merhaut
High School: Pine-Richland
Grade: 12
Sport: Football
Position: Wide Receiver/Safety

Background: The 5-foot-9, 170-pound Merhaut had nine receptions for 134 yards and a touchdown during last week's 48-28 win over Central Catholic. He caught a 13-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Ben DiNucci in the third quarter against the Vikings. The victory helped the Rams (8-0, 7-0) earn the Northern Eight Conference championship and push Pine-Richland up to No. 1 in the Post-Gazette's Class AAAA rankings.

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Football: Fox Chapel slips into Class AAAA playoffs

Written by John D'Abruzzo on .

The past few weeks have been pretty exciting for Fox Chapel's football team. The Foxes won three of their last four games, including last week's playoff-clinching 21-0 shutout against Butler.

That victory earned Fox Chapel (4-4, 3-4) fifth place in the Northern Eight Conference as well as the program's first postseason berth since 2011. The Foxes grabbed their playoff spot thanks to conference wins against Seneca Valley, Shaler and Butler. Last week, they outgained Butler in total yardage, 351-138.

Carrington Vaughn, a senior running back, helped the Foxes by rushing for 170 yards and a touchdown against the Golden Tornado. Quarterback Billy Urso added a score by throwing a touchdown pass to Thomas Smith and finished the game completing 9 of 20 passes for 128 yards.

Urso, a senior, has been one of the top quarterbacks in the WPIAL all season. Through eight games, Urso has completed 94 of 180 attempts for 1,293 yards and nine touchdowns. As a junior, Urso threw for 1,651 yards and 16 touchdowns.

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Football: North Week 8 Stat Leaders (2014)

Written by John D'Abruzzo on .

Here are the leaders in rushing, passing and receiving among North area players in Week 8, as reported to the Post-Gazette.

Rushing (yards)
229 -- Jackson Fitzgerald, Shady Side Academy
170 -- Carrington Vaughn, Fox Chapel
138 -- Daniel Frankousky, Springdale
131 -- Connor Slomka, Pine-Richland
128 -- P.J. Fulmore, C.W. North Catholic
102 -- Jerome Turner, C.W. North Catholic
114 -- Matt Rech, Hampton