Things are back on track at Freedom and it's been a sobering week at Liberty.
A week in the life of basketball coaches can go from being pleased to wondering when things will turn around.
For the Patriots, back-to-back wins over Allen and Nazareth closed out a three-game sweep on their schedule last week to pull themselves out of a below .500 mark into a 7-5 record heading into last night's tilt at Northampton.
Jeff Karam knows that keeping his Bethlehem Catholic wrestling team focused can be an issue at times.
Karam does have a program that is 6-0 on the season and has developed winning habits continually over the past three years.
Still, he saw a lack of intensity from his team during last week's 34-13 victory over Nazareth.
Whether the Hawks just came out flat, had a case of boredom or a bout of over confidence, that all should change this week.
Freedom's girls swim team swept all events in its 87-14 victory over Dieruff last Thursday.
Caitlin McCadden, Carly DelFranco, Helen Hsu, and Molly Magnan won the 200 medley relay in 2:01.91.
In the next girls' event, DelFranco won the 200 free in 2:02.15, and later, won the 100 butterfly in 1:04.56.
Rebecca Busby clinched the 200 IM in 2:32.62, and placed first in the 100 free in 1:03.71, and Brooke Munion swam to a first place finish in the 50 free in 26.56.
Liberty swimmers Sean Van Atta, Nolan Van Atta, Matt Buell, and Jacob Jones opened the boys meet against Central with a victory in the 200 medley relay, which led to a 108-58 win over the Vikings last week.
Sean Van Atta swam to a first place finish in the 200 IM in 2:16.75, and the 100 backstroke in 1:01.27.
Jones was also a double event winner, taking first place in the 50 free by a touch in 24.52, and the 100 free in 54.46.
Liberty continued their hot start to the season over the weekend, when they knocked off Northampton 35-20 to bolster their record to 5-0 on the year.
It was also the second time in the last 20 years that Liberty knocked the K-Kids off and that's something that head coach Jody Karam could look back on with a smile.
After a shakey start in its game against Whitehall last Friday night, Liberty prevailed over the Zephyrs in overtime, 52-49.
Down 10-2 in the first quarter, the Hurricanes knew they needed to refocus quickly.
"We needed to focus on our defense, which would allow us to push the ball, and that's how we got a few fast breaks," said Liberty guard, Kali Shumock.
By the fourth quarter, the Hurricanes had a 43-35 lead, which was about to disappear thanks to nine straight points by the Zephyrs.
When you talk to basketball coaches around the Lehigh Valley Conference, there's a certain consensus regarding the hierarchy structure this winter.
There's Liberty and then there's everyone else.
The Hurricanes (6-2, 4-0) only two losses were to Philadelphia area teams over Christmas and they've won their other six games by an average of 20.8 points, five of which have come against LVC opponents.
So when some teams are looking to fix their rebounding woes, offensive flow or defensive intensity, Liberty is just looking for a game locally.
The Lehigh Valley Soccer Scholar Athlete Banquet will be held Sunday, Jan. 13, at 5:30 p.m. This year is the inaugural boys and girls joint banquet and it will take place at the Northampton Community Center.
Matthew Collier is center-mid with three career goals and five career assists. He has a 3.0 GPA out of 4.0.
He was a co-captain for two years and MVP defender his junior year and rookie of the year as a freshman.
Disappointment. Wake-up call. Consistency.
All are words that come out of head coach Joe Stellato's mouth when he talks about Freedom's basketball season up to date.
Sitting with a 5-5 overall record and a subpar 1-3 mark in the Lehigh Valley Conference, the Patriots enter desperate measures this week with a three game slate.
Monday's 53-42 victory over Pocono Mountain West got their week off to a promising start with the road win.
It's not quite how Brandon Hall expected to ring in the New Year for Freedom's wrestling program. The Patriots were forced to cancel their January 3 wrestling meet against Parkland, as well as postpone tonight's bout against Northampton because of a suspected skin infection.
Hall's program was shut down for 10 days, including tonight's match against Northampton, with no skin-to-skin contact for his wrestlers.
Even though the skin infection was limited, he felt the best decision was to wipe the slate clean and shut things down to halt any potential of further infections.