The East Penn Conference softball playoffs will look to beat the rain and get under way Friday afternoon.
By virtue of a perfect mark, the Parkland Trojans are this year’s number-one seed. They will face off against Northampton, which sneaks in as the number-eight seed. The two, of course, are very familiar Skyline Division opponents.
Liberty will take the second seed after finishing 14-2 in the EPC. They will take on seven-seed Whitehall, which is coming off a 9-8 shootout loss to Easton on Thursday afternoon in a game that featured seeding implications.
Liberty continued its perfect season with a 3-2 victory over Nazareth in the District 11 team finals on Thursday afternoon.
Louis Gruber and Jacob Berg were winners at singles for the Hurricanes. Gruber beat Gabe Knowles 6-0, 6-2 while Berg knocked off Nate Tauber 6-0, 6-3.
In a rematch of the district singles finals, Ben Tauber of Nazareth beat Dan Lynn 6-1, 6-0.
In doubles, Liberty’s Luke Conrad and David Lynn beat Matt Soika and Dominic Ferraro 6-2, 6-0 while Duke Jin and Gavin Snyder fell to Nick Mitchell and Brian Smith 6-4, 6-7, 7-3.
The Bethlehem Catholic girls basketball team captured its first state title on Thursday night, knocking off Villa Maria of Erie 46-27 in the girls 4A final.
Becahi was 0-for-2 to that point in state title games, falling as recently as 2013, but this time things would be different, as the Hawks won again using a familiar approach in their playoff run - a quick start.
Notre Dame of Bethlehem recently won the CYO high school state championship title, but the story that led to the moment is perhaps what sports is all about.
Head coach Michael Horvath, of Hanover Township, guided the kids as far back as their elementary school days.
“I’ve been coaching this group of boys since they were in the third and fourth grades from Notre Dame of Bethlehem,” Horvath said, “which eventually led to a district championship in their eighth grade year and a third-place finish in the Diocesan playoffs in 2013.”
Katie McDonald will have more on the team’s state run in the March 22 issue of the Bethlehem Press.
The NHS girls lost to Boyertown 56-55 on Saturday as Abby Kapp hit a clutch three-pointer with just 17 second left in the game.
The Kids would start out well in this game taking a 14-9 lead after one and extending it to 30-24 heading into the half. But a strong second half by Boyertown saw them chip away at the lead, cutting it to just 44-42 heading into the third quarter.
Three Lehigh Valley Press teams moved on in state play Thursday night and will continue their quest for a state title.
The Emmaus boys knocked off Harrisburg 64-61 in a game that was supposed to be played Wednesday night. The Hornets got off to a nice start leading 19-13 after one and 32-22 heading into halftime. But Harrisburg would cut the lead to just 44-43 after three quarters before a close fourth quarter of action left Emmaus out in front in the end.
The Bethlehem Catholic boys and girls each brought home District 11 4A titles this weekend and will advance to states.
The girls, on Saturday afternoon, beat Central Catholic 43-27 thanks to big second and third quarter runs.
The girls got balanced scoring in the game and chipped in with a stuffing defense to keep the Vikes in check. Hope Brown and Neila Luma eached scored 9 points in the win while Tessa Zamolyi had 8.
History was made at the PPL Center on Wednesday night and it wasn’t the Phantoms or a star-studded concert this time.
A paid attendance of 7,630 sold out the area for the boys District 11 6A semifinal games featuring Emmaus vs. Pocono Mountain West and Parkland vs. Allen. It was a District 11 record, according to many. The PPL Center’s Twitter account credited the “over 8,000 fans” who came out for the game for a great atmosphere, while the District 11 Twitter account posted a photo “sold out” sign hung on a PPL Center door.
East Penn Conference boys and girls finals are set and champions will be crowned Friday night at Freedom High School.
For the boys, Bethlehem Catholic will face Allen for the third time this season at 8 p.m. at Freedom.
Becahi survived against East Stroudsburg North for a 60-58 victory. The Hawks built an early lead and led 21-11 after one, and then 39-24 heading into the half. Eastburg chipped away in the third to cut the deficit to 49-37 before a frantic rally attempt in the fourth which saw them outscore Becahi 21-11 in that final frame.
The East Penn Conference announced opening-round pairings for their boys and girls basketball tournaments. Action begins Friday night, Feb. 10 with most games beginning at 7 p.m.
In the boys bracket, Emmaus earned the top seed and will host Eastburg North. In the bracket below, fourth seed Becahi will host fifth seed Whitehall, which looked certain to finish with a top-four seed heading into the playoffs. The two winners will play Wednesday, Feb. 15 at a site and time to be determined.