Ally Ruiz’s Hat Trick Lifts NA Past Central Dauphin, 3-2
The North Allegheny girls’ soccer team knocked off the reigning PIAA Class 4A champion Central Dauphin Rams on Saturday afternoon, 3-2, in the PIAA quarterfinals at Altoona High School. The Rams were the No. 1-ranked team in the country by the USCA and had not allowed three goals in a game since 2019. North Allegheny senior Ally Ruiz personally put an end to the CD streak with a hat trick and was named the Wright Automotive Player of the Game.
The victory punches the Tigers’ ticket to the PIAA semifinals for the second time in the last four seasons and atones for a loss to Central Dauphin in the state quarterfinals last year. For the Central Dauphin Rams, the loss was their first of the year, ending their season with a 21-1 record.
The District 3 champions got off to a good start against North Allegheny when Makenna Kirk fired a shot from 40-yards out to give the Rams a 1-0 lead in the 33rd minute of play. The Tigers responded quickly in the 36th minute when Ruiz was awarded a penalty kick and converted to knot the score at 1-1.
With the game deadlocked coming out of halftime, Kirk netted her 10th goal of the season on a free kick from 40-yards out to give Central Dauphin the lead back in the 43rd minute, 2-1. Similar to the first half, Ruiz answered back with a game-tying marker, assisted by freshman Kieran Shannon, in the 48th minute.
The contest appeared destined for overtime but Ruiz’s late-game heroics propelled the Tigers to victory. Shannon once again fed a pass to Ruiz who buried a shot in the 76th minute to give NA a 3-2 lead. Accounting for all three goals on the day, Ruiz now has 15 on the season.
North Allegheny led in corner kicks, 6-2, and outshot Central Dauphin, 7-5. Senior goalie Natalie Rak made three saves to earn the victory in net.
The Tigers improve to 21-1 on the season and advance to the PIAA Class 4A semifinals on Tuesday night at a site and time to be determined.
Girls Soccer Summary vs. Central Dauphin, 11-11-23
|SCORE BY HALVES||1||2||FINAL|