Shady Side Academy’s run of field hockey titles ends
The Shady Side Academy field hockey team took to the field Oct. 28 hoping to lay claim to a fourth straight WPIAL Class AA championship.
Ellis School had other ideas.
The Tigers scored a goal with four minutes left in the first half and made it stand up to win 1-0. It was Ellis’ first WPIAL crown in four years while the Indians were gunning for their 15th championship.
“We didn’t think that would be our last game of the year,” SSA coach Erin Weir said. “It was a tough loss, especially with such a close final score. We needed to settle into our game sooner and get more offensive play in the circle. We were never able to establish our circle play on the offensive end. Give Ellis School credit. They played a great game.”
It was also the last game for a trio of stellar SSA performers. Goalie Gabby Harchelroad, forward Marjorie Crimmins and back Erica Concordia will graduate.
“They were a big part of our success,” Weir said. “They’re part of the reason we won three straight WPIAL championships.
“Though we didn’t win the title, we had a great season. I thought we overcame a lot of obstacles this year due to injuries and position changes. We had a lot of people step into new positions and put all their energy into learning their new position. I appreciated everyone’s flexibility with any changes we made.”
Weir is confident the team will continue the success next season.
“We’ll have midfielder Corby Wolfe as a key returning player next year,” the coach said. “She missed the middle of the season due to an injury, so we look forward to her being healthy next year.
“My most pleasant surprise was having two freshmen, Grace Anania and Sophie Moritz, step up into the back positions with strength and skill most freshmen don’t possess until they gain more experience. I look forward to watching them improve over the next several years.”
Marty Stewart is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-782-2123 or firstname.lastname@example.org.