Editor’s note: The Becahi girls semifinal game took place after Press deadlines.
Bethlehem Catholic’s girls’ basketball team cruised again this past Saturday when they defeated Danville, 60-37, in the PIAA State Class 4A quarterfinal at Hazleton High School.
Becahi guard Jaleesa Lanier came out in the second quarter firing two consecutive threes, and the Hawks were off and running.
Despite a strong second half by Freedom’s girls’ basketball team, the Patriots were unable to overcome an 18-point deficit in the first half and were knocked out of the PIAA State Class 6A tournament by Garnet Valley, 62-40, last Tuesday at Souderton High School
“I think we blew a great opportunity. They took the game to us. There’s no doubt about it,” said Freedom coach Dean Reiman. “We didn’t shoot a free throw in the first half. We didn’t play the way we know how to play. We were intimidated by their size.”
Bethlehem Catholic’s boys’ tennis team got in some extra days of practice due to its season opener scheduled for last Thursday against Nazareth at Illick’s Mill.
“It feels good,” said senior Stephen Botek. “We still have some improvements to make, but I think for the most part, we have a solid group of kids, good team chemistry and we can only get better from here.”
Freshman Curt Gruber is the Hawks’ number one singles player this year, Botek is at two singles, and Gabe Velez is at three singles.
Botek and Velez were doubles players last year, although not together.
The East Penn Conference boys’ tennis season was slated to have begun on March 11, weather permitting.
Liberty’s courts were clear of snow as of March 10, and Hurricane coach Chris Conrad expects that other schools’ courts are also clear since Liberty is one of the last courts to dry.
In the meantime, the Hurricanes had an opportunity to get some matches under their belts along with players from Parkland and Muhlenberg High Schools on March 9 at a junior team tennis event sponsored by the USTA.
Liberty’s girls’ basketball team ended its season on a high note with a 34-25 victory over Dieruff last month at Liberty.
“In this game, we showed we are in this league now, and we made an impact,” said freshman forward Erin Eisenhart. “This is a good thing to go into next season to prove to people we’re here next year, and we’re going to be back in this.”
The Hurricanes improved on last season’s record with seven wins.
Liberty swimmer Jake Evert is a PIAA State Class 3A silver medalist since competing in the 50 freestyle this past Friday at Bucknell University. “I’m pretty content with it. Obviously, I was trying to win and wanted to do well going into it,” Evert said.
Evert’s time was 20.23. State College’s Matt Brownstead won the 50 free with a time of 19:55, a new state record.
“It was nice because I saw some splits from other guys I was going to race,” said Evert. “I felt faster and more energized. How you prepare for it- you’ll do well.”
Bethlehem Catholic’s girls’ basketball team defeated Gwynedd Mercy in the second round of PIAA State Class 4A playoffs, 44-33, last Wednesday at Governor Mifflin High School.
The Hawks were troubled by bad passes and were forced to press early in the game, but Gwynedd Mercy worked its way around that in the first quarter.
“Then, our feet came alive, and we talked about taking the next pass away and taking the onus of playing that man to man defense in the center of the court, and the girls did a good job of forcing a couple five second calls,” said Becahi coach Jose Medina.
Bethlehem Catholic’s girls’ basketball team cruised through the first round of PIAA State Class 4A playoffs in a mercy rule game, defeating Carver Engineering & Science, 68-19, at Easton Area Middle School.
Carver had started the game, already behind, when they hit traffic coming from Philadelphia, forcing a late start.
“I really commend them. I feel they had class, they weren’t angry. They played aggressive, but I was happy they were a good opponent,” said Becahi guard Jaleesa Lanier, who hit the first two three-pointers of the game.
Freedom’s boys’ tennis team opened the season with a 6-0 victory over East Stroudsburg North on Monday at Freedom.
“It’s definitely nice to be at home, but it’s a little different because we’ve had pretty bad weather and it’s only our second time out here,” said Patriot captain Justin Szaro.
Snow fell just in time for the start of spring sports practices, forcing teams inside or not at all. Freedom was able to get in a couple of practices at Northwood Racquet Club.
Freedom’s girls’ basketball team recovered quickly from trailing 12-4 halfway through the first quarter in the first round of PIAA State Class 6A playoffs and clinched a 50-45 victory over Souderton last Friday at Easton Area Middle School.
“I think our kids just wanted it more, and 50-50 plays in the second half... When they answered us in the third quarter and cut the lead to two, I don’t think we lost faith. We came down and executed and just ran our stuff,” said Freedom coach Dean Reiman.