Don't look now, but spring has sprung and it's time for high school softball.
Sally Whittaker-Kahan can't wait to get her Northampton team into action and the Konkrete Kids are scheduled to open their season Friday at Northern Lehigh.
"It looks like a true team," says Whittaker-Kahan as she readies her squad. "We have a team with leadership, enthusiasm, talent, ability, and athleticism," the coach said as she begins her fifth season with the Kids.
If there's one thing that former Northampton graduate Billy Boyko took away from last week's Pro Day at Lehigh, it's that he's faster than Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o.
Boyko, one of Lehigh's best football players from this past season, was joined by teammates Ryan Spadola, Bryan Andrews and Gabe Johnson at Lehigh's third-ever pro day at the Cundey Varsity House and Rauch Fieldhouse.
It didn't take Northampton hockey head coach Brian Ruff to realize this was a different season. On the positive side, his club has maintained their lead throughout the year in the Non-Pure Division of the Lehigh Valley Scholastic Hockey League (LVSHL).
The difference came with the six regular season losses, a total that is totally uncharacteristic of the Kids' prowess through the years in the LVSHL.
Yet, Ruff also believed there would be a turning point. Fortunately for him and his club, there was and it was the widest turn the club had made in three years.
Northampton may not have the same Hershey presence as the old days when state champions were nearly the norm for the K-Kids, but their three medal contingent from last weekend's PIAA tournament certainly assured everyone that Northampton is still around.
The Kids (15th) finished ahead of Easton (23rd) in the overall team standings and Michael Scheetz (106), Zach Valley (120) and Bobby Fehr (160) each returned home with medals.
Via of the Lehigh Valley is pleased to announce the keynote speaker sponsored by the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem for the Via All-Star Basketball Banquet, an sports event honoring the finest basketball talent from the 35 high schools in the greater Lehigh Valley. Bill Walton, all-star basketball legend, two time NBA and NCAA Champion, and NBA MVP, is the keynote speaker for what promises to be an exciting night to honor Lehigh Valley basketball. The banquet will take place Wednesday, March 27 at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are available until Monday, March 18.
The Blue Mountain Baseball League Hall of Fame inducted four new members at their 29th annual banquet back in October.
The banquet was held at the Holy Family Sick and Relief Hall, with about 100 guests in attendance.
The Hall of Fame presented their 13th annual Scholar Athlete Award to Aaron Cook, a graduate of Palmerton High School, who is currently continuing his studies at Penn State University.
Bobby Fehr has accomplished one of the goals he had set for himself in the second half of the wrestling season.
Knocking off Whitehall's Matt Bonshak was a hurdle he's done twice over the past two weeks at districts and most recently at last weekend's Northeast Regional 3A tournament.
Fehr took care of Bonshak by a 6-2 decision in the semifinals, but couldn't take care of another thorn in his side in the finals against Easton's Evan Disora.
For most coaches, growth in a basketball team and normally every other sport isn't totally measured in the amount of wins and losses in a season. Northampton head boys' basketball coach Coy Stampone has long been a proponent of the adage, and the first-year coach has a first-hand experience of its effects this winter.
Stampone took over the reins of the program in late May and already knew the cards might be stacked against him. He didn't have sufficient enough time to devise his own scheme for the summer program that began a month after his hiring.
Three Northampton wrestlers reached the finals at last week's District 11 3A tournament, but all came up short in bids to claim gold.
Michael Scheetz (103), Zach Valley (120) and Bobby Fehr (160) fell in the finals, but represented the program well, as Northampton finished sixth overall in the team standings with 103 points.
The K-Kids advanced six wrestlers to this weekend's Northeast Regional 3A tournament at Liberty and head coach Seth Lisa was pleased for the most part with the performance.
The season is over, and all-in-all, it wasn't a bad year.
Although the Northampton Konkrete Kids' record was 11-13, Coach Jeff Jacksits' girls finished with a flurry for a respectful season.
"The girls didn't quit," Jacksits would say after Friday's 46-38 loss to District 11's top seed Pocono Mountain West in the Class 4A tourney.
'The girls didn't quit' could well be said for the whole season, which started with only four wins in the Kids' first 15 games.