One of the biggest reasons Bethlehem Catholic has entered the East Penn Conference tournament as the top seed and favorite to win the league is because of the balance and weapons the Hawks have at their disposal.
On Monday night, the Golden Hawks showed that teams are going to need a special performance to take them down in the postseason.
Becahi (20-3, 15-1) jumped out early and never looked back in the EPC quarterfinals at home, handling eighth-seeded Parkland 67-53.
Maybe a little pressure was all the Lady Trojans needed to get back into a winning mode.
Needing a win in their season finale against Northampton to reach the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference playoffs, they downed the Konkrete Kids 44-36. The sixth-seeded Trojans then had to travel to Stroudsburg Monday night to face the third-seeded Mounties and they pulled off a 45-39 win to advance to the semifinals of the EPC Tournament.
The Parkland boys basketball team had a whirlwind of emotions on totally different levels between its last two games. In last Friday night’s game against Whitehall, the Trojans trailed the entire game up until the fourth quarter when they made a comeback to defeat the Zephyrs 51-46.
Three nights later, Parkland led after each quarter leading up to the fourth, but gave up its lead and dropped the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference home game versus Allen 60-52.
The Parkland girls basketball team is finishing its season the way it started, with a tough schedule. While the end isn’t quite as daunting as opening with Central Dauphin and defending state champion Bethlehem Catholic in back-to-back games, it’s certainly not easy.
Parkland took care of a tough Central Dauphin East team before a 46-35 loss to Nazareth last week. Games against Whitehall and Cumberland Valley went Parkland’s way, but the final two games on the schedule are games against Allen and Northampton.
Parkland High School’s cheerleaders competed at the PIAA State Competitive Spirit Cheerleading Championships on Jan. 19-20 in Hershey.
The Trojans placed eighth in preliminaries, which put them in the semifinal round. They placed third in semifinals missing finals by one place.
“It was a pretty big accomplishment for us,” said Parkland coach Sami Jo Crivellaro. “They definitely performed better on Saturday, and they felt really good after they left the mat.”
The biggest difference between the Trojans’ two performances was execution.
Parkland swept at dual meet against Northampton, with the Trojan girls winning 136-30 and the boys earning a 132-51 win.
The Parkland girls team finished first in all but one event. The Trojans’ Ally Lin (50 free, 100 breaststroke) Annie Walls (IM, butterfly) and Zoe Sheridan (200 free, 500 free) won two individual events each, while teammates Katherine Gottwald (diving) and Grace Kennedy (backstroke) won one event each. Sheridan, Lin, Walls, Kennedy, Abigail Sheridan and Megan Sicinksi were all part of two winning relay teams as Parkland girls swept the three relay events.
Parkland fell to Stroudsburg Saturday at the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference Duals.
Parkland won just five bouts in the match. Nck Dolak got the Trojans’ only pin. Adam Lizak picked up a major decision, while Nate Wider, Mason Lansenderfer and Zach Ortman won by decision.
Parkland also split a pair of dual meets last week, beating Allen 71-9 while falling in a nonleague match against Phillipsburg.
The Trojans used 10 pins to route the Canaries last Wednesday. The next night they took on a tough Stateliners team and won just five bouts.
Stroudsburg 38, Parkland 22
The Nazareth girls basketball team is hot team right now, having won four of its last five games. Unfortunately for Parkland, the first and the latest of those wins have come against the Trojans (9-4 EPC, 11-7 overall). After falling to Nazareth 42-40 in their first meeting, Nazareth (9-4, 13-6) downed Parkland 46-35 on Tuesday night.
“They’re a good team and they kept us from doing some of the things that we wanted to do against them,” said Parkland head coach Wes Spence. “They changed up their defense at times and I wasn’t able to get us into a position to win the game.”
After a change in defensive philosophy and in intensity, the Parkland boys basketball team came out of the halftime locker room a different team Tuesday night against Nazareth.
Needing two wins in its final four games of the regular season to qualify for the postseason, the task was looking even harder at halftime when the Trojans trailed by 17 points.
A spirited second half helped the Trojans beat Nazareth 68-59 Tuesday night at Parkland High School.
Every team wants to start fast. That’s an important part to winning any game.
The Parkland ice hockey team did just that. The Trojans scored five goals in the opening period, and rode that early cushion to a 7-1 victory over rival Emmaus last Monday night at the Lehigh Valley Ice Arena.
“It was definitely important for us to have that fast start,” said senior Jeremy Sell. “Anytime you can start fast and get out ahead, it gives you a much better chance at winning, and there is less to stress about. You play without as much pressure.”