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Cross Country: Shaler's Schwartz claims another honor

Written by Brittany Goncar on .

Cross Country season is over, but Brianna Schwartz is still raking in the awards. The Shaler Area senior was named the Gatorade Pennsylvania Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year for 2014-2015.

She is in the running for the national award, which will be announced later this month. Athletes are selected based on academics and athletic performance, in addition to exemplary character on and off the racecourse.

Schwartz was nominated for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Dapper Dan Award in December after earning WPIAL, PIAA and regional titles. She finished 18th at the Foot Locker Finals.

Schwartz was named Pennsylvania's Gatorade Girls Track and Field Athlete of the Year as a junior.

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Girls Basketball: Coach gives stability to Shaler

Written by Nicholas Tolomeo on .

Nicholas Tolomeo profiles the Shaler girls basketball team.

2015 0108 Shaler GBasketball(Photo: Shaler Area's Andi Lydon, right, a Division I recruit headed to Central Connecticut State, driving around North Hills' Sierra Ungerman during a game last season, leads the Titans in scoring. John Heller/Post-Gazette)

"When Neal Martin arrived at Shaler in 2012, it marked the third consecutive season that the Shaler Area girls basketball team opened a season with a new coach.

Since that extended period of transition, the Titans have been a model of consistency. Martin is now in his third season with the program. A talented sophomore class that he inherited in 2012 is now the nucleus of this team.

Through 11 games Shaler was 10-1 overall, 4-1 in Section 3-AAAA. The Titans were scheduled to play Plum Wednesday in a non-section game.

The Titans won the Norwin tipoff tournament title, knocking off the host team and defending WPIAL champion Penn-Trafford. They fell, 62-42, at North Allegheny in the section opener but bounced back with three section wins against Butler Area, Oakland Catholic and Seneca Valley."

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Hockey: Shaler has the answer

Written by Marky Billson on .

Marky Billson profiles the Shaler hockey team.

2014 1224 Shaler Hockey(Photo: At the holiday break, Shaler's Alexander Ficorilli was among the leaders in PIHL Class AA in goal-scoring with 20 in 11 games so far this season. John Heller/Post-Gazette)

"This season has marked a return of the Shaler Area hockey team to prominence.

Though playing as a Class AA program after 34 consecutive seasons in Class AAA, the Titans have shed four seasons of mediocrity and are riding a 10-game winning streak to lead the Eastern Conference with a 10-1 record.

This success coincides with the hiring of coach Timothy Bosack, a Shaler native and longtime amateur hockey coach who concurrently coaches the Pens Elite 16 & under team.

"When I first took over the team, I held a team meeting and asked: 'Do you want to win or just play hockey?'" Bosack said."

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Wrestling: Thin but talented lineup gives Shaler a shot to end drought

Written by Ken Wunderley on .

Ken Wunderley profiles the Shaler wrestling team. Read his story below.

The Shaler Area wrestling team opened the season with a respectable 3-2 record at the Hampton Dawg Duals, held Dec. 5-6, but the Titans record does not tell the whole story.

Shaler opened the one-day tournament with a 42-34 win against Mount Pleasant, then posted a 39-28 upset of Hempfield Area in the second round. After a earning a bye in round three, the Titans dominated Ligonier Valley, 57-18, to up its record to 3-0.

"Ligonier Valley had only seven wrestlers, but in three of the bouts we had a starter go down with an injury," Shaler coach Drew D'Agostino said. "I had to sit all three for the next two matches."

To make matters worse, Shaler suffered a fourth injury in its next match against Hampton.

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Girls Basketball: Shaler hopes to bounce back from loss to North Allegheny

Written by Joe Koch on .

After a heart-stopping 33-32 victory over preseason No. 1 Penn-Trafford in the Norwin tournament on Dec. 6, Shaler absorbed its first loss with a 62-42 setback to Section 3-AAAA rival North Allegheny this past Friday.

The Titans got right back on the floor with a non-section 48-39 at home against No. 8 Penn Hills before hosting Butler at 7:30 p.m. today.

After trailing 22-8 about 90 seconds into the second quarter, Shaler rallied to cut the deficit to 34-27 on a putback by Andi Lydon with 5:43 left in the third quarter. But after North Allegheny coach Sherri McConnell called a timeout, the Tigers gradually took control.

"NA's an excellent team," said Shaler coach Neal Martin. "They bring a lot of pressure, but I was proud of the way our girls battled back in the second half. We have some experienced players, and we also have some players that are learning on the fly. This will only make us better as we move forward, because (North Allegheny) is a pretty good barometer of what you are going to see in this section and any kind of playoff run we hope to make. We know where we need to get better; it's just a matter of us worrying about ourselves right now."