Soccer, Volleyball teams prep for PIAA playoffs
Teams have prepared for these moments throughout the summer and into the early fall.
That's right – the PIAA playoffs are finally here.
And while many teams around the York-Adams League fought hard to qualify for the pinnacle tournament of the season, only a handful of them remain in the sports of soccer and volleyball.
Let's take a look at who is left and what their outlook is prior to Tuesday's first-round clashes.
Central York: The Panthers were looking to become just the third York-Adams League program to capture a District 3-AAA title when they squared off against Lower Dauphin at Hersheypark Stadium on Saturday.
Despite taking the early lead on a goal by Igor Gomes, Central failed to increase its advantage against the Falcons. Lower Dauphin eventually tied the game in the second-half. Neither club scored after that sending the match into two overtimes before a pivotal penalty kick showdown.
Unfortunately for the York-Adams Division I champs, they came up just a bit short as they fell by a 4-2 margin.
Central's season, however, is far from over. The Panthers will face Fox Chapel, the District 7 runner-up, Tuesday at Chambersburg High School at 5 p.m. in the first round of the PIAA Class AAA playoffs.
"We're going to try to do our homework today a little bit," said Central York coach Frank Lenno of Fox Chapel Sunday morning. "We're going to see if we can get some video of them. But going forward, you have 16 teams and everybody is good. Everybody is there for a reason."
Is Lenno afraid of any lingering effects from a devastating loss in the district finals? Not a chance.
"I really don't need to motivate them," Lenno said of his team. "They are pretty motivated. They want to win every single game. We just need to make sure we know our details before the match and just being ready to play 80-plus (minutes)."
Susquehannock: The Warrior boys upended Fleetwood by a 2-1 margin in double overtime in a District 3-AA third-place contest at Northeastern High School Saturday evening.
Joe Lippy tied up the contest in the second-half before Luke Thomas scored the game-winner in the second OT session as Susquehannock rebounded from a 1-0 deficit at the half. Goalie Aaron Bilbie made seven saves in the victory.
The Warriors (15-7) will face District 5 champion Somerset (18-5) on Tuesday at Hollidaysburg High School at 7 p.m. in the first round of the PIAA Class AA playoffs.
Gettysburg: The Adams County Warriors are probably still stinging after a stunning loss in the District 3-AA finals against Lancaster Mennonite last Thursday. After falling behind by a 2-0 margin at the break, the York-Adams League champs cut the deficit in half on a goal by leading scorer Adam Yingling. But they couldn't find the equalizer before time expired.
The Warriors, who many coaches and fans have picked as the favorites to capture the state title in a few weeks, are still alive in that quest. It's just that their beginning match will be a tad bit more difficult due to their seeding. Fortunately they are at least semi-familiar with their upcoming opponent.
Gettysburg (22-1) will play District 12 champion Lansdale Catholic Tuesday at Northeast High School in Philadelphia at 5 p.m. in the first round of the PIAA Class AA playoffs. The Warriors defeated the Crusaders 2-0 in the first round of last year's tournament.
Susquehannock: The Warrior girls had never qualified for the PIAA tournament in their history.
That is until this year.
Susquehannock punched its ticket to the PIAA Class AA tournament over the weekend after downing ELCO, 2-0, in the District 3-AA third-place contest at Northeastern High School.
Maddy Mummert, the team's leading scorer this year, and Taylor Tannura each found the net in the triumph.
The Warriors (15-4-2) will face District 6 champion Central (Martinsburg) in the first round of the Class AA playoffs Tuesday at Hollidaysburg High School at 5 p.m. Central will enter the contest unbeaten at 20-0, so it will likely be a big challenge for Susquehannock.
York Catholic: The Irish didn't have a great go of it during Thursday's 3-0 loss to parochial rival Trinity in the District 3-A finals at Hersheypark Stadium.
Their appearance in the district final, however, meant that their season would not be ending no matter what happened against Trinity as they clinched a PIAA Class A berth.
York Catholic will face District 2 champion Lakeland Tuesday at Scranton High School at 5:30 p.m. in the first round of the Class A playoffs.
Central York: The York-Adams Division I champions ran into the buzz saw that is Hempfield Saturday evening in the District 3-AAA finals at Dallastown High School. The Black Knights claimed their ninth title since 2002 after sweeping the Panthers, 25-16, 25-14, 25-17.
"I think the good thing about Saturday is that our first and second contacts were really good," head coach Nate Ocasio said. "The issue was we just couldn't put balls away."
Central York will continue its postseason run when it faces District 2 champion Delaware Valley Tuesday at North Pocono High School near Scranton at 5 p.m. in the first round of the PIAA Class AAA playoffs.
"We're pretty positive and confident going into Tuesday," Ocasio said. "As far as rebounding, I think the girls are fine. I don't think there are any heads hung. They are one of 16 teams playing still, so they understand that."
Delone Catholic: While it's pretty hard to be disappointed about playing in the District 3 finals, the Squirettes girls' volleyball team was hoping their medals would be golden.
But the four-time defending York-Adams League champions were once again blocked on their quest for a district title by their parochial rival Berks Catholic. The Saints defended their District 3-AA title by downing Delone, 26-16, 25-16, 22-25, 25-22, at Dallastown High School.
The loss marked the second and only two losses this season against Berks Catholic for a Squirettes squad that has otherwise seemed unstoppable at times throughout the campaign.
The good news for Delone is that it already qualified for the PIAA Class AA tournament that begins next week. The Squirettes will face the District 12 champion Archbishop Wood Tuesday at the High School of the Future in Philadelphia at 3:15 p.m.
York Catholic: The Irish girls' volleyball team didn't even qualify for the York-Adams League playoff, but that didn't stop them from securing a District 3 championship.
York Catholic, which entered the District 3-A bracket seeded fifth out of eight squads, captured its first district title since 2007 after sweeping No. 2 seed Lititz Christian, 25-23, 25-16, 26-24, at Dallastown High School.
The victory also secured the one and only PIAA berth in Class A. The Irish will face Blue Ridge, the District 2 champion, on Tuesday at Cumberland Valley High School at 6:30 p.m.
— Ryan Vandersloot can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org