Girls Volleyball Class 4A Quarterfinal Preview

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The long break between the first round and quarterfinal round for the Class 4A participants is finally over. It was an even longer break for the top four seeds who received a bye.

All four quarterfinal games tonight will be hosted by the higher seed.

No. 1 North Allegheny Tigers (16-0) vs. No. 9 Butler Golden Tornado (10-6), 7:30 p.m.

North Allegheny finished another regular season undefeated and is the heavy favorite to defend its WPIAL championship. The Tigers were last in action on Oct. 20 in their own invitational and their last match was on Oct. 18, a 3-0 sweep at Pine-Richland. Along with being undefeated, NA has also finished in first place in all of the invitations that they attended this year. In last year’s quarterfinal round, the Tigers swept Peters Township, 3-0…Butler picked up its 10th win of the season in the WPIAL First Round with a sweep against Latrobe. It was the Golden Tornado third win in their last four matches. This is Butler’s first quarterfinal appearance since 2008, when they lost to North Allegheny in five sets. This is the third match of the season with the Section 1 rivals. North Allegheny swept both meetings.

No. 2 Baldwin Fighting Highlanders (13-1) vs. No. 10 Shaler Titans (11-6), 7:30 p.m.

Baldwin won the Section 2 regular season title, but is coming off a long layoff after a first round bye. The Fighting Highlanders last competed in the NA Invitational on Oct. 20 and their last match was on Oct. 13, a 3-1 defeat against Bethel Park. It was the lone loss of the season for Baldwin. The Fighting Highlanders lost in the quarterfinal round last year to Hempfield, 3-1…Shaler continues to roll after picking up its eighth straight win in the first round, a 3-1 win at Hempfield. The Titans last made the quarterfinals in 2014 as the top-seed, but lost to North Allegheny 3-1. This is the first meeting of the season between these two teams.

No. 3 Pine-Richland Rams (11-4) vs. No. 6 Norwin Knights (12-4), 7:30 p.m.

The Rams finished in second place in Section 1 and earned a bye in the first round. Pine-Richland last competitive competition was on Oct. 20 at the NA Invitational. Its last match was on Oct. 18, a sweep to the hands of North Allegheny. The Rams last made the quarterfinals in 2014, a 3-1 loss against Baldwin…Norwin advanced to the quarterfinals after a 3-1 win against Peters Township in the first round. It was the sixth straight win for the Knights. Norwin last made the quarterfinals in 2016, a 3-1 loss against Seneca Valley. This is the first meeting of the season between these two teams.

No. 4 Oakland Catholic Eagles (12-4) vs. No. 5 Bethel Park Black Hawks (14-5), 7:30 p.m.

Oakland Catholic is the lone team that received a bye that did not win or get a share of its section title. The Eagles last played on Oct. 18, a 3-0 win against Moon. Entering tonight’s game, Oakland Catholic is on a 4-game win streak. The Eagles lost in the quarterfinal round last year, 3-1, against Seneca Valley…Bethel Park navigated its way to a first round win against Connellsville, 3-1. Like the Eagles, the Black Hawks also enter tonight’s game on a 4-game win streak. Bethel Park last made the quarterfinals two years ago when they defeated Mt. Lebanon, 3-1. This is the third meeting of the season against the Section 2 foes, with Oakland Catholic winning both contests.

For a complete look at the Class 4A bracket, click here.