Monday's Westmoreland Sports Notebook

Leopards advance to WPIAL championship; PT, Latrobe field hockey players earn accolades; Rosters set for WCCA volleyball match

Mon Nov 21, 2022 - 6:49PM

Sean Meyers Sean Meyers

Last Updated: Mon Nov 21, 2022 - 6:50PM

Leopards football advances to WPIAL championship

Belle Vernon Area punched its ticket to play for a WPIAL championship for the second year in a row, as the top-seeded Leopards whitewashed No. 4 Freeport Area 42-0 in the Class 3A semifinals at Gateway High School on Friday. BVA quarterback Braden Laux factored into three touchdowns, while Quinton Martin and Jake Gedekoh each found the endzone twice. Laux opened the scoring in the first quarter, courtesy of a 14-yard run, and he later connected with Martin on a 45-yard touchdown pass. Martin extended the BVA advantage in the second quarter, as he posted a 27-yard touchdown run. The Leopards sealed the outcome in the fourth with three more rushing touchdowns. Gedekoh compiled 10 and 20-yard scores, while Laux added a 1-yard TD. In addition to his success on the ground, Laux hit 10-of-16 passes for 139 yards. Gedekoh amassed 13 carries for 123 yards, while Martin rushed 16 times for 78 yards and added six receptions for 89 yards. In recording their third shutout of the campaign, the Leopards were led by Parker Jewell, who posted a team-high eight tackles, while Alonzo Wade snagged a pair of interceptions. The Leopards (9-2) secured their spot in the WPIAL Class 3A title showdown against second-seeded Avonworth Friday at 5 p.m. at Acrisure Stadium. Belle Vernon Area, which lost to Aliquippa last year in the WPIAL Class 4A Championship, is in pursuit of its second district crown, as the Leopards won gold in 1995.

PT, Greater Latrobe field hockey players earn accolades

The WPIAL Field Hockey Coaches Association announced its All-WPIAL honorees last week, and nearly a dozen players between Penn-Trafford and Greater Latrobe were recognized. From the WPIAL Class 2A champion Warriors, senior midfielder Emily Bloom, junior midfielder Ava Hershberger, senior midfielder Madison Keenan, and senior midfielder Ella Morocco were first-team honorees, while junior midfielder Mackenzie Keenan and sophomore defender Giuliana Youngo garnered honorable mention distinctions. Meanwhile for Greater Latrobe, senior forward Hope Cerny, senior forward Lauren Sapp, and senior midfielder Josie Straigis received first-team honors, while senior defender Taylor Desko was an honorable mention.

Rosters set for WCCA volleyball match

The creation of the Westmoreland County Coaches Association girls volleyball all-star match was announced earlier this school year, but the roster for the inaugural game was finalized last week. Players from across Westmoreland County will participate in the event Tuesday at Ligonier Valley High School. The East roster consists of: Greater Latrobe’s middle hitter Emma Blair, setter Lily Fenton, and outside hitter Maya Krehlik; Southmoreland’s outside hitter Kaylee Doppelheuer and middle hitter Taylor Doppelheuer; outside hitter Ellie Althof and libero Kayla Desak from Greensburg Central Catholic; Isabella DePalma and Sasha Whitfield, outside hitters from Derry Area; Hempfield Area right side Ella Bringe; Greensburg Salem outside hitter Laurel Uhlinger; and outside hitter Ruby Wallace of Ligonier Valley. Meanwhile, the West roster includes: Penn-Trafford’s middle hitter Kaelynn Loffredo, libero Gia Pezze, and outside hitter Kate Schall; setter Sophia Alvarez, defensive specialist Sara Olson, and hitter Sydney Petko from Norwin; Burrell’s outside hitter Avery Bain and setter Taylor Barr; Valley’s outside hitters Jessica Staraniec and Halie Walmsley; Franklin Regional middle hitter Ella Evans; setter Sydney Joyce from Kiski Area; and Belle Vernon Area middle hitter Lily Shahan. The East will be coached by Greater Latrobe’s Drew Vosefski and Southmoreland’s Dan Boring, while Alysson Shirey of Burrell and Penn-Trafford’s Jim Schall will guide the West.

Greensburg Salem’s Tutich earns PIHL honors

Owen Tutich, a standout forward for Greensburg Salem, was recently recognized as the PIHL Class A Player of the Month. In October, Tutich helped propel the Golden Lions to a 4-0-0 mark, as he netted six goals and added nine assists. The senior is a captain for GS, which is currently second in the Class A Blue Division.

SHU’s McDuffie named Defensive Athlete of the Year

Jaylen McDuffie enjoyed a historic season for Seton Hill football, and he added another accolade last week, as he was recognized as the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) West Defensive Athlete of the Year. A redshirt senior linebacker, McDuffie became the first Griffins football player to receive the award, and he was also named First-Team All-PSAC West. McDuffie registered 118 tackles, 11 sacks, two forced fumbles, and a pass breakup. Earlier in the season, he established a new SHU record for tackles, as he finished his storied career with 363.