Northampton's Aidan Ellwood previously has been on the big stage.
The talented freshman guard has taken the Lehigh Valley basketball scene by storm as one of the area's top scorers as well as helping his club gain respectability in a transformation from a pretender to a contender this winter.
But Ellwood experienced notoriety before as he was a key scorer on his AAU Wire-to-Wire team that went 34-0 when he was in sixth grade.
As they began this week, Northampton's hockey team found itself in sixth place in the Lehigh Valley Scholastic Hockey League (LVSHL) standings.
And with the regular season ending in two weeks, the Konkrete Kids needed to leapfrog both Diocese and Southern Lehigh to gain the final and fourth-place spot for the league playoffs, a haven that has been home for the past 14 years.
Still, the situation looked bleak as the Kids were riding a five-game losing streak.
Northampton's task to gain a ticket to the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference playoffs this week was a simple one - win.
The Konkrete Kids needed to record wins over Allentown Central Catholic and Nazareth in its final two games of the season, and they could have received a berth as either a seventh- or eighth-seed to the playoffs.
However, the Kids dropped both hard-fought games and found themselves waiting for a PIAA District 11 Class 4A postseason invite to their dance that will begin Feb. 18.
As they turn the corner for the final stage of their season, Northampton's boys' basketball team can confidently prepare for their next set of challenges in a breakthrough season.
Despite beginning the week off losses to Nazareth and Parkland, the Konkrete Kids are still in contention for an Eastern Pennsylvania Conference playoff spot as well as continuing to mature as a team.
For Mario Delker, it has been a homecoming to remember.
The junior has not only enjoyed being back with his teammates he played with his youth, but he also has enjoyed the ride of the Northampton basketball team. He has developed his game and has been a steady and valuable contributor.
"It has really been an exciting year," said Delker. "This is really my first full year playing varsity and I couldn't ask for anything more. I played with most of these guys in the NAA and stuff. We also played together in middle school. It was great coming back here."
Northampton head boys basketball coach Coy Stampone recalled a saying from his former high school coach that has applied to his current status.
"He usually texts me after our games and he recently told me to never get too high and never get too low," stated Stampone. "He told me to keep the team in the middle of the road. I want to try and keep these guys this way.
"We also try to keep in mind the three C's - confidence, culture, and chemistry. It really has been fun lately."
Life for the Northampton basketball team continues to have a new twist, and it continues to be good.
The Konkrete Kids began the week with an overall 8-4 record and a 5-3 slate in the East Penn Conference. They also had a four-game winning streak, ironically one more win than they accumulated in each of the past two seasons.
With 10 games remaining, the Kids are three wins shy of clinching their first district berth since the 2009-10 season and also are in the running for the league playoffs.
Entering his senior season, Northampton's A.Q. McNeil knew he had to make some changes to his overall game.
He did, and worked diligently to improve his left hand and develop a short-range jumper in his role as a post player. McNeill's revisions have also helped his team continue to gain respectability in the East Penn Conference (EPC) and the Lehigh Valley.
In fact, McNeil's basket tied a recent key game against Whitehall late in the contest as the K-Kids then went ahead down the stretch to gain a 39-34 win.
After getting four wins in the opening part of the season, Northampton's boys' basketball team will look to continue to climb the ladder toward the postseason.
Along with registering some wins, the Kids will strive to further enhance their new growing reputation from a pretender to a contender in the East Penn Conference.
The K-Kids raised their record at 5-4 with a 45-34 win over Lincoln Leadership in the consolation final after they dropped a 64-50 decision to Quakertown in the opening round of the Salisbury Holiday Basketball Tournament last weekend.
Northampton head hockey coach Brian Ruff is optimistic his team can avoid an act that hasn't happened in the past 14 years – missing the playoffs in the Lehigh Valley Scholastic Hockey League (LVSHL).
The Konkrete Kids began this week's play in fifth-place in the LVSHL one-division league in which the top four teams will make the postseason. Despite being within striking distance of the mark, Ruff has been discouraged with his team's recent 0-4-1 mark in their past five games after they had a 5-0 start.
They began this week with a 6-5-1 record and in fifth place.