For Upper St. Clair and Seton LaSalle, it was a banner year for girls lacrosse and now the teams’ players are reaping the benefit of that success.
With three selections each they led the list of area athletes named to the district and section all-star teams, which were selected based on voting by the coaches.
USC definitely had a season to remember.
The Panthers wrenched their first section championship from the clutches of Mt. Lebanon when they scored a come-from-behind victory, 13-12, against their arch rival. Additionally, the Panthers advanced to the WPIAL Class AAA finals, where they dropped a heartbreaker to Shady Side Academy, 12-11, in overtime. USC also gained its first PIAA berth, but lost to Garnet Valley to finish 16-3 overall.
Lindsay Newton, Lauren Hart and Aria Deitrich anchored the Panthers. The trio not only netted All-Section laurels but All-WPIAL recognition as well.
During the season, Newton and Hart ranked among the team’s top scorers with freshman Haley Newton. Deitrich had more than 200 saves in her career as a goalie.
Meanwhile, SLS netted its second straight section title and advanced to the Class AA semifinals, falling to eventual champion, Oakland Catholic, 15-10. While Brian Klisavage gained Coach of the Year for leading the Rebels to an 11-4 record, two of his players garnered All-WPIAL honors for their play.
Sarah Farnan earned her second selection on the All-WPIAL unit. The recent graduate topped all scorers with 61 goals. She added 20 assists in 15 games.
Farnan finished her career with 153 goals, which ranks her fourth on the school’s all-time scoring list. She averaged 4.1 goals per game, second best in program history.
While she received several Division I offers to play lacrosse in college, the Peters Township resident will attempt to walk on at Boston College, where she was accepted based on her 4.83 GPA. Named Academic All-America in girls high school lacrosse, Farnan will major in biology with the expectation of becoming a doctor.
Mikaela Staranko joined Farnan on the all-district. The rising senior tended goal for the Rebels. A three-year letter winner, Staranko maintained a save percentage of more than 58%.
“Mikaela has the right personality for the position,” said Klisavage. “She’s a cool customer. Poised, when you are a goalie, you have to have a short memory and be ready for the next play. Mikaela does that. Plus, she has quick hands.”
Olivia Edkins of Bethel Park and Meredith Blamer from Peters Township also joined Staranko and Farnan on the all-section squad. The Rebels won back-to-back titles.
Though only entering her junior year this fall, Edkins already had reached the 100-goal milestone. She racked up 60 goals in 15 games this spring and added 20 assists.
According to Klisavage, Edkins is a major Division I prospect and the most accomplished, pure goal-scorer he has had during his 20-year tenure as coach.
Blamer, a defender, averaged at least one drawn charge call per game. The rising senior led the team with 19 charges in 15 games.
“It’s a challenge to get those calls,” said Klisavage, “but Meredith just takes charge on defense. She knocks down passes. She doesn’t get beat 1-on-1. She’s our defensive quarterback and very hard to beat around the cage.”
South Fayette’s Sadie Jacobs also gained Section 2-AA honors.
Mt. Lebanon, which finished runner-up to USC in the section and fourth in the WPIAL, placed Emelia Krakora and Maddie Reisinger on both the All-WPIAL and All-Section lists.
Garnering both all-district and all-section laurels were Bethel Park’s Kiersten Schultz and Maggie Marsteller.
MacKenzie Lehman, who helped Peters Township win a WPIAL and PIAA championship in basketball, gained both all-district and all-section recognition. The rising senior is a Liberty University recruit.
“MacKenzie is an excellent scorer,” said Klisavage of the Indians’ leading goal-scorer. “She has lots of speed and that makes her hard to deal with especially in the open field. She is very hard to play 1-on-1. Actually you need more than one person to stop her.”
Ashley Irwin from Canon-McMillan completed the list of area athletes on the all-star list. She gained both All-WPIAL and All-Section recognition.