Win streak comes to end
For the Northampton Konkrete Kids, the winning streak is over at 13 games.
However, it was just one component of a multifaceted season that has elevated the Kids’ status among their peers and the area basketball community.
The Kids dropped a 71-53 decision at Nazareth Feb. 2 that ended their streak. They edged Emmaus, 55-54, three days earlier.
“Winning 13 in a row isn’t too shabby,” said head coach Coy Stampone. “We have played well and have felt pretty good about ourselves.
“Nazareth came out and hit three 3-pointers to start the game, but we came back to take the lead at halftime. It was back-and-forth in the third quarter and we went to man-to-man in the fourth when (Nazareth’s) Jared Dotson exposed us.
“It really wasn’t as bad as the score was, and Nazareth needed the game to stay in the district hunt. The gym was packed and it was a playoff atmosphere. We were down seven to Emmaus, but we kept battling and pulled it out at their gym.”
Along with qualifying for districts, the Kids also will be playing in the East Penn Conference (EPC) playoffs, the first under Stampone’s reign as well as the first time in quite a while.
With two regular-season games this week, the Kids likely will take the fourth- or fifth-spot overall in the EPC behind Bethlehem Catholic, Central Catholic. Pocono Mountain West and East Stroudsburg South.
Stampone sees his team staying in the fifth spot and having an opening EPC tournament game on the road. The Kids end the season with games at Pocono Mountain East Monday and at home with Parkland on Senior Night Friday.
“I don’t see the top four teams changing too much,” said Stampone. “I don’t know where we will end up, but we are just glad to be in it.”
Stampone also stated the team nearly reached the goal of beating all of their conference opponents in one of their two games. The lone exception was Nazareth, who defeated them early in the year as well as the previous week.
“That was one of our goals and we fell just short,” he said. “But it was something we hadn’t done since I was here. Beating Emmaus and Parkland earlier was huge for us.”
The Kids are in good shape in the district Class 6A bracket, beginning the week firmly entrenched in the second spot.
“We like where we are for districts and we should stay there,” said Stampone. “We want to have a good final week and get ready for the league playoffs.”