The NORCO playoffs kicked off this week and Bethlehem’s Wanderers earned the right to an opening round bye thank to their 16-2 regular season record.
The Wanderers sit at the top of the bracket and will await the winner of the four-five matchup between Freemansburg (9-9) and Wind Gap (9-9).
Northampton (15-3) is on the opposite side of the bracket and have a bye as well, as they will either take on third-seeded Nazareth (14-4) or Bankos (9-9).
The first round best of three series began on Monday and the second round of the tournament is slated for July 11-13.
Liberty and Freedom are both competing in the Lehigh Valley Summer Soccer League at Lehigh University and are battling to stay alive in the playoff picture in Group A.
Freedom, the defending District 11 4A champions, are off to a 2-2 mark, good enough to have them enter the week in fifth place in the 10-team group. Liberty is 1-3 and sitting in seventh place.
The top-five teams in each of the three groups, plus a wild card team with the best record, advance to the 16-team postseason, which begins on July 10.
Bethlehem Catholic may have struck out wins at the Cedar Beach Bash, but experience is what head coach Scott McClary is looking for this summer.
With the Hawks going into next year with a revamped roster, summer is the time to build experience for the program’s newest faces on the varsity scene. That was part of the allure of the program heading to Philadelphia over the weekend to take part in the Philly Live 2 tournament.
The Lehigh Valley sports community lost a legend last week when legendary Liberty soccer coach, Kalman Sarkozy Sr., passed away at the age of 74 following a battle with cancer.
Sarkozy was a hall of fame coach, guiding Liberty’s boys’ program for 23 years (1980-2003), amassing 342 wins and three District 11 titles. He stepped down from the head coaching role at Liberty in 2003, but stayed on as an assistant until 2016.
The Wanderers may have gotten off to a slow start to the season with the amount of games they were able to play early on, but the club hasn’t let that slow them down as the month of June progresses.
Dwight Pulieri’s crew is in first place heading into this week with a 7-1 record, as they’ve mostly dominated the competition this summer so far.
Liberty made the deepest run over the weekend at the Cedar Beach Basketball showcase and its performance might be a preview of what is to come this winter.
The Hurricanes were one of the last teams alive in the big school division, losing to Reading in their final consolation round contest on Sunday to end their weekend tournament run.
Liberty went 4-2 throughout the duration of the event, which was better than Bethlehem Catholic and Freedom, which both lost the first two games of the tourney to get eliminated.
The Bash at the Beach will take place this weekend at Cedar Beach and all three Bethlehem schools will look to make a push to last until Sunday’s action.
With a lot of teams across the EPC already playing in the Cedar Beach summer league, this weekend’s tournament [the former Stellar event] amplifies the intensity and competition levels.
Bethlehem Catholic head coach Scott McClary, fresh off an EPC and district championship season, is using the summer as an opportunity to see the program grow after losing stars Justin Paz and Kyle Young to graduation.
It was one final chance for some members of Bethlehem Catholic’s football team to relive their time as Golden Hawks during the recent 62nd annual Big 33 game.
Pennsylvania knocked off Maryland 21-0 in the contest, as four Bethlehem players and Becahi head coach Joe Henrich took part in the festivities.
Freedom linebacker Tristan Wheeler was also part of a PA effort that limited Maryland to six first downs in the contest, while the PA offensive line was anchored by two of Becahi’s biggest boys up front last season, as Elias Marte and Dalton Daddona worked the trenches.
The Lehigh Valley Carpenter Cup is set to take the field this week when they open up play on Wednesday, June 12, at 12:30 p.m. against Suburban One American/ Continental. The game comes after Press deadlines.
This year’s roster 25 players, 16 of which are underclassmen.
Liberty’s Ben Piripavel and Freedom’s Nick Stannard and Conor Howland are the local Bethlehem representatives on the squad.
A win by the LV squad in the opener would push them to the quarterfinal round on June 14.
The complete LV team roster is below.
The NORCO season is underway and the Wanderers have jumped out to a perfect start early in the season.
Winning their first two games of the season 12-0 over Hellertown and 14-0 over Bankos, the Wanderers (2-0) have been off to a torrid beginning to the season.
With games against Nazareth (5-1) and Wind Gap (0-4) this week, Dwight Pulieri’s team will get a chance to see what they’re really made of when they stack up against Nazareth this week.