It’s no secret around the Parkland community, and even as far as the Lehigh Valley, that the Trojan football program has been a dominant force over the last few years. They have won four straight District 11 Class 4A titles, and also come league championships along the way.
Parkland head football coach Tim Moncman never wavered in his decision to go for it on fourth down and one from the one-yard line. He had done it before with the game on the line back when he was the head man at Liberty in an important game, and he had the personnel to do it again.
The last home game of the regular season is traditionally senior night in which the senior members of the home team are honored with their parents. It has become somewhat of a tradition that the Parkland football team comes away with a victory in that final home game.
“It’s a great way to go out and leave our legacy as a class,” said senior wide receiver Carrick Panella. “We don’t want to be the class that loses on senior night. We work hard all week because we know it’s our last home game. It’s a good feeling to secure that last win on this field.”
It was a game that the Parkland football players, coaches, and fans had circled on their calendars for a little while. Despite both being inaugural members of the three-year old Eastern Pennsylvania Conference, the Trojans hadn’t played Bethlehem Catholic for a few years. With the way that the conference was aligned, it didn’t allow these two successful programs to meet on the gridiron until the league realigned before the start of the season.
Senior basketball player Sam Iorio had plenty of options to play basketball in college. Twelve different schools offered him scholarships, but only one got his commitment. And that was the school that stuck with him through the beginning, and who he had the best relationship with.
Two weeks ago, Iorio committed to play at American University for the next four years.
In a week 7 loss to Bethlehem Catholic, the bread and butter of the Parkland offense could not get going. The run game was held in check for most of the night, and the Trojans were held to just seven points offensively, a touchdown pass by Michael Ruisch to Conner Bernecker.
But last weekend against Pocono Mountain East, Parkland (6-2 overall) found its rushing attack once again. Five different Trojan tailbacks found the end zone in a 45-0 shutout win on homecoming at Parkland School District Stadium.
It seems like it has been the norm as of late, especially during the 2016 season. When the Emmaus and Parkland boys soccer teams meet each other, the games are competitive, and usually end up with a close score in the end. Last Monday night’s Eastern Pennsylvania Conference showdown at Emmaus High School’s Memorial field was no different.
Parkland’s Josh Kiser scored with one minute left on the clock, matching an earlier goal by the Hornets Jon Heberlein. It tied the score at 1-1 and forced overtime.
It’s not often that the Parkland girls volleyball team loses an Eastern Pennsylvania Conference match, let alone a single game in a best-of-five match. But Tuesday night’s clash against Emmaus was a hard-fought match.
The Trojans were nearly taken to the brink, and could have easily lost the first two games, but made the plays when they had to and put the Green Hornets away in the fourth game to win the match 3-1 by scores of 28-26, 25-21, 20-25 and 25-19 at Emmaus High School.
With the rain coming down and a chill in the air, the Parkland football team headed to the locker room at halftime down 14-13 to visiting Whitehall. A couple of touchdowns by Zach Gilbert and a few key defensive stops helped the Zephyrs to the early lead.
But as the third quarter began, senior running back Frank Guida and junior back Jahan Worth put their games into a new gear and awoke the Trojan offense.
It had been 130 minutes and 35 seconds since the Parkland football team has allowed an opponent to score. Since they gave up two early touchdowns in a 14-6 loss to Liberty three weeks ago, the Trojans have shutout Easton and Freedom’s dynamic offenses in back-to-back weeks.
Parkland defenses have had dominant performances through the past couple of years, under Tim Moncman, the team’s current head coach who was in charge of the defense before taking on the top job this year.