With practices set to begin this week for high school spring sports, athletes are beginning their preparation in hopes of having successful seasons on the field, diamond and track.
But Parkland senior Joey Hawkins, a hurdler on the Trojans' track and field team, has been gearing up for the upcoming high school season during much of the offseason.
The first day of spring, Friday, March 20, is a little more than a week away, but like recent years, high school spring sports teams are in a familiar position as their second week of practice is almost finished.
A late winter with periods of heavy snow have once again caused baseball, softball, lacrosse, tennis and track and field teams issues with their outdoor practice schedules that began last Monday, March 2.
Bloomsburg University junior Chrissy Hollan spent her first two seasons as a defensive midfielder on the Huskies womens soccer team.
But as this past season got underway, Hollan was moved to the center back spot, a role she was familiar with from her days as a Trojan. With that position switch came an increase in responsibility and leadership.
The former Parkland High School graduate thrived in that leadership role to produce her best collegiate season yet.
Since the Parkland Area Soccer Club formed 10 years ago after breaking from the Schnecksville Playground Association, plenty of players and coaches have gone through its ranks.
At an upcoming event, PASC will bring together members that helped form the decade-long tradition.
The 10-year anniversary ceremony Saturday, Dec. 6, at St. Joseph's the Worker Church in Orefield is scheduled from 6-10 p.m.
Senior Erik DiGirolamo was the first Trojan to receive a gold medal following Friday's District 11 Class AAAA championship bout with Easton.
And rightfully so.
While it was a complete team effort for the Trojans on defense, DiGirolamo came up with the game's most significant play when the Red Rovers were yards away from punching in the game-winning touchdown.
After Jake Bissell's field goal gave Parkland a 13-10 lead in overtime, Easton had one possession to tie or win the game.
There was never an ounce of doubt.
Despite two losses in a three-week span in the regular season that dropped Parkland to the No. 7 seed in the District 2-11 Class AAAA playoffs, the Trojans never questioned their ability to get back to the championship game for a third straight season.
Over the past decade, the Parkland boys cross country team has become very familiar with the state meet. In fact, the boys have had a team run in states in every season since 2004, which includes back-to-back 11th-place finishes in 2005 and 2006.
And while the Trojans weren't able to crack the top 20 teams from 2009-2011, steady strides have been evident in recent years in Hershey.
In recent years, the Parkland girls' tennis team has been the class of the district competition. Over the last four seasons, the Lady Trojans entered the District 11 Class AAA team championships as the No. 1 seed and went on to win the last three titles.
It may be a new conference, but the leader of the pack has remained the same. At least that's the case on the girls cross country scene.
Following three straight Lehigh Valley Conference titles, the Parkland girls added their fourth league title in a row after winning the inaugural Eastern Pennsylvania Conference Cross Country Meet. Senior Cara Moyer finished in eighth place to pace the Lady Trojans, who finished six points ahead of regular season champ Easton on Tuesday at Bethlehem Municipal Field.
In addition to fighting for the District 11 Class AAA championship along with Emmaus, Nazareth and Pottsville, Parkland had one individual qualify for the district individual tournament as well.
While there were high hopes for the Trojans and Nick Kshatri heading into Monday's 18-hole round at Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort, the road ended for both.