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North Allegheny girls make time for charity

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The girls on the North Allegheny softball team certainly have enough on their minds in the springtime, with prom and graduation coming up – not to mention the tight race with Shaler for first place in Section 3-AAAA.

But all of that didn’t prevent them from planning a selfless act and raising $1,000 Saturday for the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence by staging three games at the school. They also are collecting cell phones and chargers to be donated to victims of abuse.

“It was just something they wanted to try, and it came off very nicely,” assistant coach Rick Meister said. “They deserve all the credit.”

The event consisted of three games, with North Allegheny defeating Latrobe and Montour, 6-0, and 11-0. Pitcher Julie Heinl was dominant, allowing only six hits in two games. Junior catcher Maria Shevchik hit a three-run homer and senior right fielder Jane Miner had a solo shot. Senior third baseman Steph Cassidy drove in two runs with two hits.

Meanwhile, Latrobe defeated Montour, 2-0.

North Allegheny (10-2, 4-1) is tied with Shaler (6-2, 4-1) for section supremacy, and the Tigers are 7-1 since returning in late March from three games at the Disney World Sports Complex in Orlando, Fla. The only loss: 3-2 to a visiting Shaler team (6-2, 4-1) on April 8. The rematch is Thursday at Hilltop Field in Shaler.

North Allegheny and Shaler are Nos. 2 and 3 in the Tribune-Review Class AAAA rankings, behind No. 1 Connellsville (9-1, 4-0).

North Allegheny is one of only four WPIAL softball teams with 10 victories (Class AAA Nos. 1 and 2 Franklin Regional and Belle Vernon and Class A No. 5 Chartiers-Houston).

DANA’S COMEBACK

Good to see Seneca Valley shortstop Dana Hughes back at school after suffering a serious head injury in an automobile accident three months ago.

Hughes, a senior, was one of the best shortstops in the WPIAL last season, earning a scholarship to the University of Connecticut. She isn’t playing this season, but she could return for the Huskies next year.

There is no way of telling what Seneca Valley’s record would be if Hughes was playing, but it’s a good bet it wouldn’t be 2-7.

MORE THAN SECTION 1

Much has been said and written about the four power teams in Section 1-AAAA baseball (North Allegheny, Seneca Valley, Pine-Richland and Butler, who are 35-8).

But keep an eye on Mt. Lebanon and Peters Township, who have combined to win the past three WPIAL championships — the most recent two by Peters Township.

Mt. Lebanon (8-3, 3-1) is 7-1 since a 9-1 loss at Seneca Valley on March 27. The Blue Devils have scored at least five runs in all seven victories, including 21 against Baldwin.

Meanwhile, Peters Township (7-3, 3-1) defeated Mt. Lebanon, 5-3, on April 8 and had a five-game winning streak before losing to Upper St. Clair last Friday.

CLINIC OF CHAMPIONS

Champion tend to gravitate to champions, and Upper St. Clair coach Jim Render’s one-day youth football clinic proves it.

The clinic, scheduled for June 6, will feature two-time champions from high school, college and the NFL on its teaching staff. Render, who has won two PIAA championships at Upper St. Clair, will be joined by Penn State defensive coordinator Tom Bradley (two national championships) and Steelers pro personnel coordinator Doug Whaley (two Super Bowl victories). Buffalo Bills linebacker Paul Posluszny and former Pitt kicker Conor Lee also will be on the staff. The clinic is for boys between the ages of 8-13, and 14-year-olds entering ninth grade also are welcome. The clinic will begin at 9 a.m. at Upper St. Clair Stadium. Advance registration is encouraged online. The fee is $55 and checks must be made out to Camp of Champions. Same-day registration is $60 (cash). Registration forms must be mailed by June 1 to The Youth Football Camp of Champions, Box 12693, Pittsburgh, PA 15241.

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