For the last half decade the Parkland and Bethlehem Catholic girls volleyball teams have been in several state finals between the two of them and are a consistent powerhouse in their classifications.
Last Monday night the two met in an Eastern Pennsylvania Conference regular season match. The Trojans did not sweat much in winning the first set, but were forced to hold on to take the next two in sweeping the Golden Hawks by scores of 25-12, 25-19 and 25-17.
Junior quarterback Tanner Lewis had been splitting time with senior quarterback Andrew Lee while each were getting their feet wet as first-year varsity contributors through the first half of the regular season.
Last Friday night, Lewis had the best night of his young varsity career, completing 9-of-13 passes for 129 yards and two touchdowns and running for 68 yards and a score in helping lead Parkland to a 45-35 come-from-behind Eastern Pennsylvania Conference South Division win over Nazareth at Andrew Leh Stadium.
The Trojans are now on a two-game win streak.
For nearly 15 minutes of game action last weekend, or a quarter-and-a-half, the Bethlehem Catholic football team looked like it was going to be another victim of the Parkland Trojans on their home field. The Hawks could not get anything going and the Trojan defense came out strong.
But the second half saw Becahi score 17 straight points and not allow any, propelling the Golden Hawks to a 24-16 victory over the Trojans) last Friday night in an Eastern Pennsylvania Conference South Division clash of reigning District 11 champions (Becahi 4A, Parkland 6A).
The Parkland boys soccer team can finally say that it is on a winning streak during the 2018 season. After drawing with Central Catholic in the season opener and then defeating rival Emmaus in the next game, the Trojans lost two of their next three games.
But after a 3-1 win over Pocono Mountain East last Saturday, Parkland (4-2-1 overall, 3-1-1 EPC Skyline) found its first win streak of the 2018 regular season after taking down Whitehall 4-0 Monday night at Parkland High School in an Eastern Pennsylvania Conference Skyline Division game.
Before the start of the 2018 regular season, the Parkland girls soccer team had seen a ton of success recently against Eastern Pennsylvania Conference opponents. That success included 70 straight wins over conference foes.
But that streak came to an end in the second game of the year, falling to rival Emmaus. Then, the Trojans dropped a second game to Whitehall later in the season.
Parkland was looking for consistency and it found some with four goal scorers in a 5-0 win over Stroudsburg last Friday night at Parkland High School.
Heading into last week’s game against Liberty, the Parkland football team was searching for a win. It needed one. Following two consecutive defeats to Freedom and Bethlehem Catholic, the Trojans squared off against a third Christmas City squad and hoped to stop the bleeding.
Both teams were riding two-game losing streaks and were hungry for a victory.
It’s what Parkland girls volleyball head coach Mike Krause wanted. His young team to be challenged. And they were.
Whitehall improved in every set, making each one closer than the one before, and made the Trojans work for every point, especially in the third set.
Parkland, however, was able to record a 3-0 sweep by scores of 25-7, 25-12 and 25-21 last Monday night in Eastern Pennsylvania Conference Skyline Division action at Whitehall High School.
Emmaus and Parkland match-ups are important in every sport. The student-athletes know each other and want to beat each other.
In volleyball, the Trojans have been a dominant force over the last decade-plus, winning the last four District 11 championships. They have also gotten the better of their crosstown rivals the Green Hornets in a majority of those years.
But last Thursday night at Emmaus High School, Emmaus broke through and defeated Parkland. And to do so, it had come from behind in dramatic fashion.
It’s been a long time since Parkland has lost a regular season football game in the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference. The Trojans had won 12 straight league games spanning across two seasons.
But in a wild contest last Friday night, the Trojans suffered their first setback since the 2016 regular season finale, falling 21-20 to Freedom at Bethlehem Area School District Stadium.
“Heck of a game,” Freedom head coach Jason Roeder said. “Both teams battled like crazy. Both teams put their hearts and souls out there. We’re fortunate to come out on top.”
The Emmaus and Parkland boys soccer teams know each other well. They see each other often each season, and sometimes even play each other four times in a year, like they did in 2017.
The Trojans were 4-0 against the Green Hornets last season, on their way to Eastern Pennsylvania Conference and District 11 championships, breaking Emmaus’ streak of two straight district titles.
Despite all of those setbacks last season, this year’s Emmaus team has a lot of talent and experience returning, while the Trojans lost more than half of their starting lineup.