Westmoreland athletes of the week: Greensburg Salem’s Ethan Turnbull, GCC’s Tatum Gretz
School: Greensburg Salem
Claim to fame: Turnbull, who scored 10 goals this season, netted four goals to lead Greensburg Salem (8-9, 7-5) to a 5-2 win over Laurel Highlands in Section 3-3A action Oct. 16. With the win, the Golden Lions claimed fourth place and a WPIAL playoff berth.
“It was my first game back from injury. I knew the stakes with the game since we needed to win to get in the playoffs. We all had to step up as a team,” Turnbull said.
What are your college plans for next year?
I’d like to play soccer in college, but I want to focus on school most importantly.
What does it mean to you to get back to the WPIAL playoffs after missing last season?
Freshman and sophomore year we made it to the playoffs. Last year was a humbling season with us not making it. We knew we had an opportunity this year, and we took advantage of it.
What was it like to have a performance like that in a pivotal game to extend your season?
It was amazing. I knew my team would appreciate it. Our senior class wanted to get to the playoffs and say that we made it.
What was the difference from last year to this season with how the team performed?
We practiced a lot. We knew our field better than other teams since the width isn’t as wide. The seniors have been playing together since we were really young, and we knew we really could do something this year.
What was it like to be out with a dislocated shoulder?
I didn’t think I could come back this year. It was heartbreaking that I couldn’t do anything to help my teammates out there on the field.
School: Greensburg Central Catholic
Claim to fame: Gretz, who has 29 goals this season, scored twice to lead No. 2 Greensburg Central Catholic (11-2) to a 6-0 win over No. 15 Riverside in the first round of the WPIAL Class A playoffs Saturday. The Centurions will face OLSH (12-6) at 6 p.m. Wednesday at South Park.
“I thought it was the best game we played so far. We moved the ball really well and finished all our chances. It was a great game to start the playoffs,” Gretz said.
What does the team need to do to defeat OLSH?
I think we just need to play the same way that we’ve been playing.
What did it feel like to score your first career playoff goals?
It felt great. It was like any other goal I’ve scored. It was good to score in my first playoff game.
What did the team learn with the back-to-back losses to Burrell and Shady Side Academy this season?
I thought we weren’t playing our best during those games. I think it’s good we lost them. We learned so much from those losses. It made us come back stronger and work harder for every single game.
What is it like to make such an impact in your freshman year?
It has felt really good. I always want to be the best player on the field at all times. I just give it my all, and I want to be an impact on the field.
Who is your favorite athlete?
Carli Lloyd because she’s a midfielder and plays the same position as me. I really look up to her.
-- Andrew John