Part of becoming a great and successful athlete is knowing you can compete at a high level, but also not forgetting what got you to that point.
For this year’s Northampton Press Co-Female Athletes of the Year, Aja Blount and Lyndsey Gallagher, those moments came at different points in their careers.
For Blount it was the first time she took the court as a Konkrete Kid.
The Northampton girls basketball team has already begun life without Aja Blount, who graduated as one of the top players ever to play for the Kids.
This summer, they are playing in the Central Catholic High School Summer League and also recently competed in the Cedar Beach Bash.
The girls kicked off play on Friday with a bit of a tough draw, playing University City which actually went on to win the tournament.
After falling to the consolation bracket, Northampton beat Wilson and Boyertown before falling to a familiar foe in Nazareth.
The Northampton Connie Mack baseball team is off to a hot start, winning five of their first seven games in the highly-competitive Lehigh Valley League.
There are six returning players from last year’s team to help lead the way. They are: Zachary Angerman, Andrew Kovalchik, Zakary Schwartz, Jacob Struss, Kyle Wescoe and Daniel Yellen.
“We are excited for the 2017 season,” head coach Steve Kerbacher said. “We have six returning players, all part of last year’s nucleus which give us valuable experience.”
The state track and field meet concluded this past Memorial Day weekend and unfortunately for two Northampton track members, things didn’t turn out as hoped.
Lyndsey Gallagher qualified after taking second in the 1600 at districts and Lexi Barrall advanced after capturing gold in the pole vault. However, Gallagher didn’t qualify for the finals and Barrall no-heighted on her first attempt as both saw their trips to Shippensburg quickly end.
Any athlete or team always wants to be at their best when the postseason comes around.
For Northampton pole vaulter Lexi Barrall, her season started off strong, but entering the East Penn Conference meet was a bit of a different story.
Barrall said she PR’ed [Personal Record] clearing 10 feet in the first few meets of the regular season, but then got stuck at that mark for a while.
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.
Day 1 of the East Penn Conference meet is in the books and a few Northampton individuals stood out.
For the girls, Alexis Barrall took the pole vault competition by clearing 10-0. She finished ahead of Savannah Rivera of Whitehall who cleared 9-0 and finished in second place.
Aja Blount was fourth in the shot put throwing a 32-8.75. Jachebed Arthur took first place with a toss of 36-10.5.
Tatiana Lopez qualified for the 100 hurdle event with a time of 16.45. That was second best, only behind Kiaya Jones of Pocono East who had a 16.26.
The District 11 singles tournament got under way on Monday at Lehigh University.
Andrew Hozza was the only K-Kid to advance to the second round, which will take place April 26, after Press deadlines.
Hozza was a 6-1, 6-2 winner over Josh Becker of Eastburg North. His next opponent is Parkland’s Aneesh Kapoor, who won 6-1, 6-0 over Najja Francis of Pleasant Valley.
Brandon Peters had to take on the top seed in Ben Tauber of Nazareth and he lost 6-0, 6-0. Dom Jackson fell to six-seed Leland Addison of Easton 6-2, 6-0.
The Northampton track and field teams thought they suffered two very close losses to Pleasant Valley this week. The boys lost 78-72 while the girls fell 76-74.
Or so they thought.
However, after correcting a scoring error, it eventually gave the Kids a first place in the girls triple jump which tied the score at 75-75. However, the girls won on the first tiebreaker which is first place finishes, 10-8, according to an email correction the Press received about the meet on Tuesday.
The Northampton softball team got off to a hot start despite some cool temperatures.
The won their first two games against Fleetwood and East Stroudsburg North, but recently fell to Emmaus to start off East Penn Conference play.
The girls will be led by four seniors this year in Taylor Keeney, Hallie Muffley, Anna Filchner and Jillian Muthard. Keeney will pitch for the kids while Huffley and Filchner make the Kids solid up the middle as Muffley plays short and Filchner second. Muthard is an outfielder. All four girls have been four-year starters.