You don’t have to know Parkland High School track and field coach Stephen Ott long to know he accentuates the positive.
The Trojans’ cross country coach was scheduled to take over the track and field program this spring from Scott Levan, but the coronavirus pandemic and mandatory school closings made that impossible. Ott is positive, but he calls it like it is.
“I am truly disappointed that this season was canceled,” Ott said. “Not only because this is my first year as head coach, but also because of the seniors.”
The Parkland wrestling squad took 10th place last weekend at the District 11 Class 3A tournament at the Liberty High School Memorial Gym.
The Trojans finished with 67 points. The Nazareth Blue Eagles took the team title with 291.5 points.
Two wresters in particular - Bryan Diaz at 132 pounds and Lucas Kern at 145 pounds - performed well against the district’s best.
Kern beat Blue Mountain’s Daniel Farrell 4-3 in the fifth place round. Diaz had a strong tournament, but could not handle Whitehall’s Xavier Arner, losing a 3-2 decision in the fifth place round.
As the regular season nears a conclusion, the Parkland wrestling team is geared up for the postseason.
“We are getting to the time of season when kids start finding their post season weights,” said coach Jon Trenge.
The Trojans secured an entertaining and hard-fought victory at home Jan. 11 over Freedom, 34-31. Four nights later on Senior Night, Easton proved too hard to handle in a 35-24 decision. On Jan. 17, Parkland offered a solid performance at the New Oxford Tournament at New Oxford High School.
The Parkland Duals, held Jan. 4 at Parkland High School, proved to be an educational encounter for the host team.
“Parkland had a very good experience,” said Trojan wrestling head coach Jon Trenge. “We competed well and several of our wrestlers were very successful on the day.”
Wrestling tournaments have become commonplace over the last decade, but the question becomes does volume equal value? What is the advantage for a school tor participate?
Parkland wrestlers had an opportunity to measure themselves against some top-flight competition Dec. 28-29 at the Bethlehem Holiday Wrestling Classic, held at Liberty High School.
Trojan head coach Jon Trenge was pleased with what he saw, but acknowledged there is work ahead.
“We are improving, but it is a process,” Trenge said when asked about the Trojans’ showing at BHWC. “I see improvements in the bottom position, and on the feet mostly. We are hand fighting far better than in the beginning of the year.”
The Parkland boys and girls swimming teams made a splash over the first part of the season.
The Trojans has success at the annual Cedar Crest Classic Invitational and recently beat Cumberland Valley in a nonleague meet.
Kayla Johnson (100 freestyle, 200 freestyle) and Annie Walls (butterfly, 500 freestyle) both won two individual events for the Trojan girls team against Cumberland Valley.
Parkland’s Gavin Webb (200 free, 500 free) and Shawn Kushner (individual medley, breaststroke) won a pair of boys individual events in the nonleague dual meet.
Parkland wrestling’s 2019-2020 season debut against Pleasant Valley was anything but another meet. In fact, first-year head coach Jon Trenge said it won’t soon be forgotten.
The agenda for the 2019-2020 Parkland swimming campaign is one predicated on achieving personal excellence.
“For both teams, we are looking to put ourselves in a position to earn lifetime bests in every event that we swim in the postseason at Last Chance, districts, and states,” said Trojan head coach Robert Robitaille.
Psychological sessions do not happen in swimming pools, but they can impact those who in swim in them.
First-year Parkland wrestling coach Jon Trenge is optimistic about the 2019-2020 campaign.
“The culture, so far, is good,” Trenge said. “We are keeping seven of our freshmen up [on the varsity team] and helping them grow and mature as people and wrestlers will be an important task this year. The kids are getting tougher and learning a lot.”
The Parkland wrestling legend is also impressed with his team’s overall hard work and skill.
The 2019 Parkland Trojans girls tennis season is over, but it won’t be soon forgotten. The Trojans finished 14-0 in East Penn Conference regular season play and 16-1 overall. Then came the postseason.
“It was a great season,” said coach Mike Hingston. “We won a lot of championships this year.”
The Trojans won the EPC regular season title, the EPC tournament, and made it to the District 11 finals in singles and doubles and won the team title.