It wasn’t the District 11 Class 6A championship game that area basketball fans had anticipated. But fifth-seed Allen met the seventh seed Parkland in the final last Saturday night at Freedom High School.
The Canaries raced out to an early double-digit lead in the first couple of minutes and did not give the Trojans (15-10) much of a chance at a comeback as Parkland fell to Allen 76-50 to finish runner-up in the district, but still advanced to the PIAA playoffs.
Entering the 2018-2019 season, a few things about the Parkland girls swimming team emerged. First, the team was talented, but inexperienced. Second, its most reliable talent was an indefatigable senior by the name of Ally Lin.
Lin did not disappoint, performing brilliantly for coach Robert Robitaille throughout the season. Her prodigious work ethic, superior swimming techniques and a never-say-die attitude served to inspire her teammates and legions of Parkland swimming fans.
When you reach the PIAA basketball tournament, you know you’re going to be playing against good teams. For Parkland’s girls team, its first-round draw is especially tough as the Trojans have to play the Abington Heights Galloping Ghosts (24-4), the third-place team from a tough District One.
The easiest way to stop the Ghosts is to stop Kassondra Brown, their 6-foot-2 center who is headed to the University of Rhode Island. Brown is a force both offensively and defensively, averaging 18 points per game and 13 rebounds per game this season.
Ed Ohlson is never the kind to duck the media after a bad game. With that being said, he admittedly wasn’t looking forward to reliving the events that led his team to a 60-47 loss in the District 11 Class 6A semifinal game against Northampton. It was one of those nights where things just didn’t go well for Parkland and the game quickly slowly slid away from the Trojans.
Cory Border took a break from wrestling when he reached high school to focus mainly on football. But in his senior season, an opportunity came up to get back involved in the sport. He figured, why not?
He probably couldn’t have written a better script as to how it would pan out.
Border won his fifth-place heavyweight match on Saturday in the District 11 Class 3A Wrestling Championships at Liberty High School to punch his ticket to regionals. He held on for a 1-0 victory over East Stroudsburg South’s Daniel Opong-Duah for the final regional spot in the 285-pound weight class.
It was not like Parkland. Before last year, the boys basketball program had made it to the District 11 final and a spot in the state tournament each of the last six seasons. But last year the Trojans bowed out before the district semifinals.
The Trojans did not stay away long. They’ll return this year after a quarterfinal win put them back in the district’s final four this season.
Many would have expected Parkland and Freedom, the top two teams all season, to meet in the championship series of the Lehigh Valley Scholastic Hockey League that began on Monday. Parkland held up its side of the deal, but Freedom was nowhere to be found after Northampton upset the Patriots in a one-game playoff game last week.
With Freedom, which entered the postseason unbeaten, out of the equation, No. 2 seeded Parkland became this year’s favorite. And the Trojans took care of business in Game 1.
The District 11 Wrestling Championships will get underway Friday afternoon at and culminate Saturday evening at Liberty High School.
Parkland has six wrestlers seeded in the top 10 in their weight class, led by No. 6 Cory Border (Sr., 24-11) at 285.
District team champ Bethlehem Catholic has five No. 1 seeds, while Stroudsburg has three and Northampton and Bangor each have two grapplers at the top of their respective bracket.
The top five wrestlers at districts will move on to next week’s Class 3A PIAA Northeast Regional Tournament at Liberty.
The Parkland girls swimming team had no answer for a buzzing bevy of Emmaus swimmers in a 113-73 defeat during their Feb. 14 battle at Parkland High School. With the victory, the Green Hornets claimed the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference title and capped an undefeated 11-0 season and went 11-2 overall. The Trojans finished 9-1 in conference and 10-1 overall.
The Parkland boys swim team was unable to defend its home pool in a stinging 114-72 defeat to the Emmaus Green Hornets on Feb. 14 at Parkland High School. With the victory, Emmaus earned their 13th Eastern Pennsylvania Conference title and finalized an undefeated EPC season (11-2 overall). Parkland dropped to 8-1-1 in the EPC and 8-2-1 overall.