NEPA Sports Nation

BULLETIN: Wyoming Area halts Wyoming Seminary state title run

Ella McKernan, middle, after scoring game’s only goal on an assist from Nina Angeli, left.

By Tom Robinson,

KINGSTON – Rylee Muniz made four difficult fourth-quarter saves and Ella McKernan scored the game’s only goal in the first six minutes Tuesday night as Wyoming Area ended Wyoming Seminary’s title reign with a 1-0 victory in the District 2 Class A field hockey championship game.

The district title was the first for Wyoming Area, a fast-rising program that had made two of the last three Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association state semifinals, but had, until Tuesday, been unable to get past Wyoming Seminary to top of District 2 or the Wyoming Valley Conference.

“It feels awesome,” said first-year coach Bree Bednarski, a record-setting scorer at Wyoming Area when it started its upswing in the sport over the past decade. “ … Wyoming Area is up and coming right now.

“We’re very excited.”

For Wyoming Seminary, the loss ended a four-year reign as state champion, a five-year run as district champion and the illustrious career of retiring coach Karen Klassner.

Klassner won 10 state titles and more than 750 games while leading the Blue Knights.

“For me, it’s been a great career,” Klassner said. “I tried to perpetuate the sport. That was my goal and I think the district and everyone involved did a great job of doing that.”

With the PIAA reducing the number of District 2 qualifiers to the Class A state tournament to one this season, the Lady Warriors and Blue Knights knew there was only room for the champion in the state tournament.

The loss kept Wyoming Seminary from having a chance to extend the streak in the tournament.

Klassner said she will spend more time behind her desk now and will be rooting on Wyoming Area as it tries to continue the district’s state success.

“It’s been a good run for District 2 and for Wyoming Seminary, so I’m proud of the whole area,” she said.

Wyoming Area had the advantage in play for three quarters before Wyoming Seminary put together a strong fourth quarter, applying pressure on the Lady Warriors sophomore goalie.

Wyoming Area goalie Rylee Muniz

“I knew how much they were relying on me,” Muniz said.

Muniz stopped two hard shots on penalty corners and came out of the cage diving to smother two other attempts.

“Rylee did fantastic,” Bednarski said. “I couldn’t ask for any more from her today.

“I’m super happy for her and so proud of her.”

Each team finished with 10 shots and 7 penalty corners.

There weren’t any shots for almost six minutes.

Then Wyoming Area’s Lyla Rehill dribbled toward the goal with teammates flying up field on each side of her.

Rehill slipped the ball past Wyoming Seminary goalie Laine Cabell to Nina Angeli approaching the left post.

Angeli pushed the ball toward the open cage and McKernan finished it off at the right post with 9:05 left in the first quarter.

“At first I thought it was going in,” McKernan said. “I just had to make sure.”


Return to this website for additional coverage and photos from Wyoming Area’s championship.

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