North Allegheny wins 6th straight PIAA Girls Volleyball Championship


Saturday November 19, 2022 | 10:13 p.m

MECHANICSBURG — North Allegheny girls’ volleyball has won many games over the past six years, especially on the biggest stage.

On Saturday night, the Tigers maintained their position atop Pennsylvania’s highest classification by clinching their sixth straight PIAA Class 4A title with a 3-0 win over District 1 champion Garnet Valley.

It was North Allegheny’s ninth title overall.

They repeated this, losing the first game but combining to win the match at Cumberland Valley High School’s Eagle Dome 26-28, 26-24, 25-8 and 25-12.

“It’s very special to be able to win again with this group of seniors,” said senior setter Mia Tuman, who travels to Ohio State to play volleyball in the Big Ten. “We didn’t play well in the first game but a bit of motivation from the loss (to Pine-Richland) in the WPIAL championship reminded us that we don’t like to lose.

“We just talked about relaxing and playing our game. When we did that, we played well. The third game was maybe our best game of the whole season.”

The first game was a test of will, which was ultimately decided by a newcomer. Garnet Valley native Sarah Wood made an impression early on. She could swing from the deep on either side and added a few blocks as well. The Tigers weren’t fast enough with the double block and she ended up hitting over the block.

Klaira Zakarian was also a key factor for the Jaguars as she provided a different look as they moved away from Wood.

The Tigers came out quickly in Game 2 but made some of the same mistakes. Garnet Valley found some holes and used the aggressive blocks to hit balls off the blocks and out. The Jaguars also received five separate calls to touch the net at Tiger’s points.

The Tigers, however, righted the ship behind Tuman and Ella Zimmer. A final dig and return of Tuman fell to the Jaguars’ side for the game winner.

The random impact appeared to energize the Tigers and deplete the Jaguars.

It was old North Allegheny in Game 3. The Tigers took a 8-0, 15-2, 20-4 lead before ending the game 25-8 to take a 2-1 lead.

The Tigers (22-1) took a 19-9 lead in Game 4. The Jaguars struggled on serves and sets while the Tigers put on a clinic to keep balls alive. Avery Butcher defensive receivers Rebecca Pilotta and Ella Deeter held up every ball to give the Tigers a chance. Tuman put the ball everywhere for hitters and got a chance to score. She found spots to find open ground numerous times in games 3 and 4.

“This group of seniors is special and it’s so nice to be a part of their success,” said Tigers coach Russ Hoburg. “They have worked so hard to be a part of the NA volleyball tradition. We’re a very high-level team, but we have some players who didn’t have much time tonight and are just as good as our seniors. They just have to wait their turn.

“We have several players who can hit and we spread the ball a bit. In Game 1 we just didn’t play our game, we let them dictate things.”

Garnet Valley, seeking their second title, ended their season 24-2.

“Wood was just phenomenal tonight,” said Jaguars coach Mark Clark. “We played so well in the first game and the second game. We felt kind of drained after losing the lead in Game 2 and ultimately losing the game. We came out so flat in Game 3 and fell into a hole that you can’t work your way out of against teams as good as North Allegheny. They also just approached us in Game 4. The girls fought and fought all season and had a great year.”

Keywords: North Allegheny