After defeating archrival Laurel in a tense 1-0 pitchers’ duel at Mohawk on Monday afternoon to clinch a spot in the PIAA Class 2A finals, some might have expected a more jubilant celebration in the infield from Neshannock following the final out. But there were no gloves tossed in the air, no high-pitched screams of joy and no mobbing each other on the ground — just some smiles and customary postgame high-fives.

That should come as no surprise, though. After all, these once-in-a-lifetime Lancers have bigger fish to Frye.

In the midst of one of the most astonishing postseason runs in recent memory, Neshannock junior Addy Frye pitched her fifth consecutive shutout to outduel Spartans senior Autumn Boyd in another classic showdown between the friendly-but-fierce Lawrence County rivals. A Providence recruit, Frye struck out 12 and walked two while allowing only one hit in a dazzling display of dominance. She also went 1 for 2 with a pair of walks at the plate, and her hard-hit grounder in the top of the first inning produced the game’s only run on a fielding error.

“Addy is great to watch,” said Lancers coach Jackie Lash. “I think she gets stronger as the days go by. I think she got stronger as that game went on. She’s such a good kid to work with.”

Seemingly finding another gear every time Laurel threatened to score, Frye is now up to 69 strikeouts without allowing a run through five playoff starts in 2024. Four of those five playoff starts have been one-hit shutouts.

For her career, Frye now sports a sparkling record of 66-1, and she now has more than 500 career strikeouts along with 20 career home runs — and don’t forget, she still has another year left. But for now, her only focus lies in securing Neshannock’s second state title in the past three seasons after leading the Lancers to a perfect season as a freshman in 2022.

“We wanted to go three years in a row, and we came up short last year,” Frye said. “[It feels a lot better] going back this year and doing it for our four seniors that really wanted this.”

After missing out on her entire sophomore season due to PIAA transfer rules, junior left fielder Miley Anderson continued her postseason tear in her first taste of the playoffs with Neshannock. A speedy leadoff hitter who recently announced her verbal commitment to Kent State, Anderson went 2 for 4 with a pair of stolen bases and scored the game’s only run in the top of the first inning, giving her a team-leading 39 runs scored and 32 steals on the year.

“I’m in tears. I’m so excited. I love this team so much,” said Anderson, who will be playing in her first state championship game. “I’m just going to soak it all in and take it one pitch at a time.”

For the Spartans (20-6), the game offered another sobering reminder that the neighboring Lancers (25-0) are the only team keeping them from celebrating their own dynasty. Laurel won three consecutive WPIAL titles from 2018-21, but the Spartans now have a record of 0-10 against Neshannock since 2022 while going 55-5 against all other foes during that span.

Meanwhile, with one final showdown looming at 11 a.m. Friday against District 4 champion South Williamsport (24-2), the Lancers are now one win away from completing their second perfect season in the past three years, a feat no WPIAL team has achieved more than once. And although Lash tries her best to keep her players grounded, it’s clear they are all well aware of the history they have a chance to make.

“We definitely have the talent to be able to do that,” Lash said. “Let’s just go out and play the game we love.”

Neshannock’s Miley Anderson reacts after being called safe at first against Laurel in the PIAA Class 2A semifinals on Monday, June 10, 2024, at Mohawk High School. Neshannock won, 1-0. (Emily Matthews/Pittsburgh Union Progress)

Class 5A

Having now traveled more than 1,000 miles round-trip across a trio of upset victories in the PIAA tournament, WPIAL runner-up Thomas Jefferson (15-8) clinched its first-ever state championship appearance with a heart-pounding 9-8 comeback victory against District 6 champion Central Mountain (16-6) at Mount Aloysius College. The Jaguars fell behind in the second inning by a score of 6-0 before roaring back for a remarkable rally behind big-time performances from Zoe Krizan and Morgan Alisesky.

A Drexel recruit, Krizan went 3 for 4 with a double, a homer and five RBIs, including a game-changing three-run double to cut the 6-0 deficit in half in the third inning. Krizan’s solo homer in the bottom of the fifth trimmed the gap to 8-5, then the standout senior added an RBI single in the bottom of the sixth to make it 8-7, setting the stage for Alisesky’s heroics.

Alisesky, a Robert Morris recruit, went 2 for 4 with three RBIs, none bigger than her go-ahead two-run single in the bottom of the sixth to complete Thomas Jefferson’s unthinkable comeback. This marks the third consecutive multi-hit game in the state playoffs for Alisesky, who went 5 for 5 in a 17-4 win against Solanco in the opening round.

Alayna Grese also belted a solo home run for the Jaguars, and freshman pitcher Aubrey Shaffer earned the win after allowing two earned runs on eight hits with five strikeouts. Thomas Jefferson will face District 2 champion Pittston Area (21-1) at 4 p.m. Thursday for the PIAA title.

Laurel’s Hayden Seifert tags out Neshannock’s Aleena Frengel at third in the PIAA Class 2A semifinals on Monday, June 10, 2024, at Mohawk High School. Neshannock won, 1-0. (Emily Matthews/Pittsburgh Union Progress)

Class 4A

WPIAL champion Elizabeth Forward flexed its muscles with a lopsided 8-0 win against District 12 third-place finisher Archbishop Wood (13-8) at Norlo Park Complex in Chambersburg, Pa., clinching its second PIAA championship appearance in emphatic fashion.

Star senior Shelby Telegdy authored another signature performance in the circle for the Warriors (23-1), pitching a complete-game shutout with nine strikeouts while allowing one walk and four hits and finishing 2 for 4 at the plate. Sophomore standout Julia Resnik went 2 for 4 with a double and two RBIs, and Julia Johnson went 3 for 4 and drove in a pair to help power Elizabeth Forward to victory. The Warriors will face District 4 champion Blue Mountain (26-1) at 1:30 p.m. Friday.

Class 1A

The unforgettable four-part series between Section 2 co-champions Carmichaels and Chartiers-Houston came to a fittingly thrilling conclusion at Peters Township’s Peterswood Park, as star shortstop Carys McConnell lifted the Mighty Mikes to a 5-4 victory with a walk-off double to send Carmichaels (19-3) to its second PIAA championship game and first since 1998.

Across four action-packed games this season totaling 36 innings, the Mighty Mikes outscored the Buccaneers by a combined score of 19-18, with three of the four games decided by one run. Monday’s win avenged a 3-2 defeat against Chartiers-Houston in the WPIAL semifinals less than three weeks earlier.

After the WPIAL champion Buccaneers jumped out to a 4-0 lead on Ella Richey’s two-run home run in the top of the fifth inning, Chartiers-Houston (20-3) appeared to be cruising toward the state finals with ace pitcher Meadow Ferri pitching another gem. But a trio of errors allowed Carmichaels to tie the score with four unearned runs in the bottom of the fifth, then McConnell drove home Bailey Barnyak with the game-winning double in the bottom of the seventh.

Barnyak earned the win after allowing four runs on seven hits in seven innings of work, while Ferri allowed only one earned run on three hits with 13 strikeouts and went 2 for 2 with two walks and an RBI in the defeat. The Mighty Mikes will take on District 9 champion DuBois Central Catholic (22-2) at 11 a.m. Thursday in the opening game of the PIAA championship finals.

Steve is a sports writer at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, but he's currently on strike. Email him at

Steve Rotstein

Steve is a sports writer at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, but he's currently on strike. Email him at