|Posted/Updated: 11/19/2021 11:41:32 AM|
PIAA volleyball championship preview: Can Parkland dethrone North Allegheny, winners of four straight titles?
In each of the past four seasons, the Parkland girls volleyball team fell in the PIAA semifinals, missing out on an opportunity to play powerhouse North Allegheny in the finals.
After storming through the top half of this season’s state bracket, the Trojans will get their chance to dethrone the Tigers, which will be vying for its fifth-straight state title.
Parkland’s program has an abundance of experience playing in state title matches, as the team most recently won back-to-back titles in 2014 and 2015, followed by a runner-up finish in 2016.
After a six-year hiatus, can the Trojans return to the top? With the firepower they’ve carried through the playoffs, it’s certainly an achievable goal. Parkland head coach Mike Krause, who has both his daughters (Taylor and Kristin) on his staff, will undoubtedly have his team primed for gold when they take on the Tigers.
Here’s what to expect in Saturday’s state title tilt:
PIAA CLASS 4A CHAMPIONSHIP
Who: Parkland (District 11 Champion) vs. North Allegheny (District 7 Champion)
What: PIAA Finals
Where: Cumberland Valley High School
When: 6 p.m. Saturday
Head Coaches: Parkland: Mike Krause; North Allegheny: Russ Hoburg
How they got there
Parkland (24-0): The Trojans have been incredibly focused all season. The team plays loose and always appears calm in big points, which will be beneficial against North Allegheny. Convincing wins over Downingtown West (first round), Cumberland Valley (quarterfinals), and Bishop Shanahan (semifinals) prove the Trojans are ready for the next step. While it is excited to be back in the state finals, Parkland has unfinished business. In the players’ minds, state gold is the only acceptable outcome.
North Allegheny (19-1): Playing in the state final is just another day in the gym for North Allegheny. Expect the Tigers to take chances often, simply because they can. There aren’t many situations North Allegheny hasn’t seen, which means the team will be the picture of confident and comfortable. The team did drop one set in the semifinals against Shaler, which shows they aren’t invincible. To add a little extra motivation, a fifth-straight title would be the longest PIAA girls volleyball streak since 1976-1983 when Norwin won eight in a row.
Parkland: Brynn Dreisbach, Elena Pursell, Scarlett Jago, Sydney Esquieres, Maggie Smith, Sydney Johnston, and Meredith Steirer.
North Allegheny: Carissa Treser, Caroline Curran, Ella Deeter, Mia Tuman, Jadyn Perkins, Rachel Burton, and Rebecca Pilotta.
Questions/Comments? Contact Scott Trumbauer