Parkland softball coach Barry Search has a young, inexperienced team that he knows is going to take some time to pull everything together. If you talk to him about his team, the term “work in progress” is going to come up often. Search was faced with what every coach of a young team dreads: a tough early schedule. In this case, Bethlehem Catholic, Emmaus, Northampton and Liberty comprised much of the early schedule for the Lady Trojans.
For years now, the Parkland baseball team has just rolled out one pitcher after another and never had questions about who was going to be in their starting rotation. The Trojans would combine those quality arms with an emphasis on defense and would easily cover any deficiencies they may have had offensively.
For the first time since Kurt Weber took over as the head coach in 2016, the pitching machine has had a hiccup. Parkland returns just one pitcher starter from last year’s team and has a help wanted sign out to fill out the rotation.
At the District 11 Swimming Championships, Megan Sicinski and Matt Ceh were named the women’s and men’s swimmers of the meet and were given the Dennis A. McGinley Award for their accomplishments. They capped that off with medals at the PIAA Swimming and Diving Championships last week at Bucknell University in Lewisburg.
Megan Sicinski finished fifth in the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:03.37. She also competed in the 200 IM, reaching the consolation finals and finishing 15th with a time of 2:06.16 at Bucknell.
If you really want to know what the weather is going to be like, ask Parkland softball coach Barry Search. He learned to forecast weather while in the military and he learned it well. He doesn’t need radar or fancy gadgetry to forecast weather, he just looks at the sky and tells you what’s going to happen. He did that Monday after a scrimmage against Hazleton when he challenged his players to identify the type of clouds overhead.
Before his lesson on clouds, Search put together another forecast about his team, which he’s coached for the past eight seasons.
For the first time in three years, the Parkland boys volleyball team enters its spring season without a championship to defend. The Trojans finished the 2017 season at 16-4 overall and qualified for both the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference and District 11 Class 3A tournaments, but fell in the quarterfinals to Whitehall in both postseason events. They were the defending three-time district champions.
If you think your weekends are busy, consider the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.
This past weekend, they wrapped up the middle portion of their third straight three-game weekend. While it’s almost a foregone conclusion that the Phantoms will be playing playoff hockey this spring, nothing is official just yet. With 13 games left in the regular season, the Phantoms have dropped their magic number down to 12 after a productive weekend.
The Parkland boys swim team collected five individual medals and one relay medal at last weekend’s District 11 Swimming Championships, which were moved to Emmaus High School after a power outage at Parkland. Overall, the boys finished second in the team competition trailing Emmaus 489-313.5 at the end of the weekend.
While the District 11 Swimming Championship may have been moved out of Parkland High School because of a power outage, the smaller setting at Emmaus High School proved to be just fine for the Parkland girls team as they won their 10th straight district championship, coasting to a 524-364 victory over second-place Emmaus.
The Nazareth Blue Eagles got off to a fast start against Parkland in the District 11 Class 6A quarterfinal game of districts and never looked back, beating the Lady Trojans 46-33. The loss ended the season for Parkland while Nazareth went on to beat top-seeded Easton 50-32 and will play Freedom in the District 11 Championship. The win also clinched a spot in the PIAA Tournament for Nazareth.
It seems like every time the Parkland girls team turns around this season, its facing unfriendly opponents. In their bid for an EPC championship, the Lady Trojans ran into defending state champion Bethlehem Catholic (14-2), who had started the season with a win over Parkland (11-5) in the EPC opener.
For the second straight season, the Golden Hawks ended Parkland’s hopes for a conference title with a 49-25 win last week.
The loss wasn’t the end of the road for Parkland, since the district playoffs are on the horizon.