With only two games under their belts heading into this week, Liberty's boys' basketball team had a slow start to December.
That all changes this week, as the Hurricanes (2-0) have a three-game slate the week before Christmas, none of which are easy contests.
Starting with last night's contest against Easton, followed by tonight's home tilt against Stroudsburg, the 'Canes have a busy two-night stretch.
Then they close out the week with everyone's favorite basketball contest in the Lehigh Valley when they host Freedom Friday night.
With any type of loss, there's always a lesson to be learned and Freedom's basketball team took a valuable experience from their setback to Easton last Friday night.
Closing out games and finishing contests that you can win are always important steps towards becoming an elite team and the Patriots (3-1) are certainly aware of that following a 47-45 overtime loss to the Rovers (3-0).
The Freedom Patriots swam to two victories over Northampton last week when the boys defeated the Konkrete Kids, 111-65, and the girls defeated the K-Kids, 111-65.
Freedom's Peter Conzola, Trevor Watlington, Scott DelFranco, and Brandon Burnette opened the boys events with a victory in the 200 medley relay in 1:47.59.
Anytime you can place half your roster at a wrestling tournament, it's been a good weekend.
Those were the words of Liberty head coach Jody Karam, as his Hurricanes came off a third place finish from the Penn Manor tournament last weekend.
Grimaldi Gonzalez was one of three finalists for the 'Canes, but the only one to come home with a championship, claiming the 126-pound crown following a 6-5 decision over Ronnie Perry of Solanco.
Noah Klingborg (170) and Jake Gunning (220) each took silver for Liberty, as eight Hurricanes came home with medals.
Brandon Hall has a knack for calculating team scores for Freedom's dual meets.
He says it's a blessing and a curse and the Patriots got the wrong end of the stick in last week's 29-27 loss to Emmaus.
Hall knew the bout was going to be tight heading in, but was disappointed walking away with a defeat.
Liberty's first conference swim meet of the 2012-2013 season resulted in a 115-34 victory for the Hurricane boys and a 95-75 victory for the Hurricane girls last Thursday over Whitehall.
Sean Vanatta, Nolan Vanatta, Matt Buell, and Jacob Jones won the 200 medley relay for Liberty in 1:55.08.
Alex Fitch won the 200 free in 2:08.48, James Sheplock took first place in the 200 IM in 2:18.27, and Ryan Spadt swam to a first place finish in the 50 free in 24.60.
Preparation and patience were the keys in Freedom's 54-49 victory over Easton last Friday.
"We had three days to prepare, and they did what we thought they would. They play kind of helter skelter," said Freedom coach Ron Garza.
With a first quarter score of 13-12, the Patriots took better control in the second quarter, and had a 30-22 lead by halftime.
"We were attacking their defense, finding open shots, and making good passes," said Freedom senior guard, Ashley Gordon, who had 13 points against the Red Rovers.
Well, who's to say the dynasty can't continue with a new crop of wrestlers?
Becahi's uncertainty to open 2012 started off with signs of resiliency, which eventually led to the Golden Hawks capturing the King of the Mountain team championship over the weekend at Central Mountain.
Darian Cruz (120) and Jose Ortiz (182) both took away titles, as eight Becahi wrestlers came home with medals as the Hawks pulled away from foe Parkland in the team race 177.5 to 126.
You know the expectations for Freedom's wrestling team are different when a 4-1 opening weekend record is somewhat disappointing.
Head coach Brandon Hall doesn't want to seem overly critical or negative of his troops bringing home first place honors from the Quakertown Duals over the weekend, but when 5-0 was the goal for the Patriots, Hall meant it.
"I asked our seniors if I was being too critical about our results and they said no," Hall said. "It was the first weekend of the season and you're just not where you're going to be yet.
The Bethlehem Catholic Cheer Team is inviting high school, recreational, and CYO cheerleading squads to participate in its fourth annual Golden Hawk Cheer Challenge, scheduled for Jan. 12.
"This is a friendly way to get teams back onto the competition mat after the holiday break before the larger competitions begin," said Bethlehem Catholic cheerleading coach, Brenda Michalska.