Liberty’s boys’ swim team won its season opener against Allentown Central Catholic, 99-82, last Tuesday.
Jase Smith, Anthony Delcorso, Robert Negron, and Jake Evert combined to win the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:39.95.
In individual events, Chase Ledger won the 200 IM with a time of 2:07.36, and Negron was a double event winner in the 50 free with a time of 21.11 and in the 100 fly with a time of 53.36.
“[Central’s Charlie Li] was fighting me the whole time,” Ledger said.
Li came in second in 2:14.89.
Liberty’s 61-29 loss to Allentown Central Catholic last Friday night was one of several early season bumps and bruises for the Hurricanes, one to which they are not accustomed, but their ability to regroup will be a key this season.
“We have a lot of freshmen, and they’re getting knocked around, and they take it and with such excitement,” said Liberty coach Becky Soto. “The older girls are teaching them the ins and outs, and it’s helping them bond more and trust each other.”
A one-point game at halftime became a 10 point deficit by the end of the third quarter from which Freedom could not recover in its 70-66 loss to William Allen last week.
The Patriots began the first quarter with five straight points and three three-pointers by Meckenzie Herman. Hailey Silfies drained two foul shots to end the first quarter when the Patriots led 16-11.
Liberty’s girls’ swim team won its season opener against Allentown Central Catholic, 98-80, last Tuesday.
“It was definitely exciting,” said senior, Julia McCarthy. “It gave us a sense of how to take on the year.”
Sabrina Krotzer, McCarthy, Samantha Taylor, and Kendra Smith won the first event of the day, the 200 medley relay, with a time of 1:57.05.
Later in the meet, Abby Mack, Greta Stuckey, Taylor, and Anna Lehr won the 200 free relay with a time of 1:46.32.
“We’re a close team, so we can all rely a lot on our relays,” McCarthy said.
Pocono Mountain East came back on Freedom’s girls’ basketball team last Friday night to hand the Patriots a 40-39 loss in their conference opener.
Freedom had a four-point lead at halftime and an eight-point lead at the end of the third quarter, but the Cardinals held the Patriots to three points in the fourth while scoring 12 points to clinch the victory.
Hailey Silfies was the Patriots’ top scorer with 20 points. Meckenzie Herman scored eight points, Kaitlyn Swint had four, Jaiden Coyne, Kyra Jefferson, and Carissa Norder had two points apiece, and Rachel Sanchez had one.
Bethlehem Catholic’s girls’ basketball team won its season opener against Universal Audenreid 63-30 at the Steel City Challenge, a merging of teams from the Lehigh Valley, Philadelphia, Harrisburg, and the Poconos, on Dec. 10 at Moravian College.
“We were expecting them to come out, full on, and we knew they were going to be quicker, but they leveled off and let us play our game in the second half,” said Becahi forward, Tessa Zamolyi, who had six points.
Liberty High School’s diving team has expanded into double digits, rostering 10 divers as of the beginning of December for the 2016-2017 season.
The Hurricanes will have three returners in Kellen Rogers, Alicia Valladares, and Meryum Okumus.
“Kellen has 11 dives and qualified for districts last year,” said Liberty diving coach Jeff Zettlemoyer. “Alicia and Meryum are close to 11.”
New divers on the girls’ team will be Camryn Stefancin, Cara Kuykens, Lehanna Sine, and Hannah Graybeal.
Freedom High School swimming coach Jon Larson believes that this year is the best start to the season the Patriots have had in awhile.
“I think the coaching staff is better geared toward getting new swimmers up to speed,” said Larson. “I think we have a little more cohesive team.”
New to the coaching staff is Mike Ortiz, a coach from New Mexico who moved to the Lehigh Valley two years ago to head up Lehigh Valley Aquatics. Ortiz will be Larson’s assistant.
“Mike really wants to work with the kids, and that will also help out with our feeder program,” Larson said.
Liberty High School’s swim team will be looking forward to some great competition within themselves and against their opponents during the upcoming 2016-2017 season.
“The meets we win will be because of our depth, as opposed to straight up headliners,” said Liberty head coach Reik Foust, who will be assisted by Jeff Matyus and Evan Kocon.
The girls’ team will roster approximately 40 swimmers, including seniors, Paige McCloskey, Julia McCarthy, Audrey Layne, Jessica Becker, Sarah Cecchini, Lindsay Molloy, Alivia Bond, Camryn Stefancin, and Carolina Paul-Lastres.
Liberty High School’s girls’ basketball coach Becky Soto is looking forward to a new kind of challenge with the Hurricanes for the 2016-2017 season.
“It’s like having a blank canvas, and taking the talent, and creating a different style than what people expect,” Soto said.
Senior, Kristina Polak, is the only returning starter, and she will be joined in this year’s starting lineup by senior, Jackie Arthur, who was the Hurricanes’ number six player last year. Polak and Arthur are Liberty’s co-captains.