The Northampton girls varsity tennis team is closing out the 2017 season with the same spirit they have kept throughout their schedule - focusing on the positive.
On Friday, the team’s number-four doubles team of seniors Liz Moore and Shannon Reinhard claimed a bronze medal in the East Penn Conference tournament.
The Northampton girls varsity soccer team split their scheduled games this week with a 6-0 win against East Stroudsburg on Friday and a 2-0 loss to Whitehall on Monday.
Despite the recent loss, the team stands at 8-4-1 overall, and according to head coach Chaz Saul, “they have come a long way since last year.”
The turnabout of this relatively young team with only six senior players on the roster was spurred by two factors. The first is, as Saul said, “finding their offense.”
On Friday, March 3, the Northampton varsity swim team arrived at Parkland High School, the home of the 2017 PIAA District XI Championship meet, with 15 swimmers ready to compete against the best of the best from surrounding schools.
Swimming in the AAA division, the competition for Northampton was undeniable, but at the close on Saturday evening, Northampton had earned five medals, set two new school records and achieved numerous personal best times.
The Northampton boys’ varsity swim team ended the 2016-2017 season with a home win against Easton High School on Thursday, Feb. 16.
Ending the season on a high note, the boys edged out the Rovers with a 99-86 victory.
“Easton was a big win for us,” explained head coach Cullen Mentzell.
It was the first time since 2005 the Northampton boys bested Easton.
The girls lost a close contest against Rovers by a score of 94-92.
The Northampton varsity swim team will graduate seven seniors this year, Michael Bauer, Morgan Fehnel, Alexis Frey, Gavyn Frankenfield, Jared Iasiello, Joshua Millan and Hanna Novobilski.
On a rainy morning in February, I sat down with some of the graduating senior swimmers after another early morning practice, to look back at the past four years and talk about saying goodbye.
The Northampton swim team hosted Pocono Mountain East on Tuesday, Feb. 7, for a meet filled with close finishes, personal best times and races won by fractions of a second.
In the end, both the Northampton girls and boys squads would emerge with a victory over Pocono East. The scores were 102–78 for the girls and 105-68 for the boys.
Some highlights of the evening included about half of the Northampton swimmers achieving personal best times by coach Cullen Mentzell’s estimation.
On Thursday, Jan. 19, the Northampton swim teams lost a tough meet against Nazareth.
This loss comes between two additional shortfalls; a loss to Liberty the previous week and the team’s most recent and toughest loss to Parkland last Thursday evening. Despite the final outcome of these meets, Northampton coach Cullen Mentzell is focused on accentuating the positive.
In a meet against school rival Whitehall High School on Thursday, Jan. 5, the Northampton boys varsity swim team came away with a win by a score of 90-80.
This was a particularly important meet – at least to the pride of the team and school – as the swim team, among all the varsity teams, had the opportunity to participate in the Cement Belt challenge this year.
For years, Northampton varsity swimming has forfeited several points per meet due to the lack of a diving squad to compete in the varsity swimming and diving competitions.
Those days are far behind them now, thanks to the establishment of a new diving team and a renewed excitement about the future of diving in Northampton.
The man behind this growing sport in the Northampton Area School District is Todd Lerch.
The Northampton varsity boys and girls swim teams made a big splash on Thursday night, Dec. 22, with the first home meet of the 2016-17 season.
Both the girls and boys squads achieved a win over East Stroudsburg North with the scores of 131-49 (girls) and 130-50 (boys). Northampton’s diving team also contributed to the point total, claiming all 20 diving points with their performance.
Coach Cullen Mentzell was pleased with the team’s performance at this first home contest.