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Fall Sports

Wednesday, November 2, 2011
BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS Marian's Emily Pilla (left) and Lauren Nietz (in blue) both go to hit the ball as teammate Nikki Collevechio looks on from behind.

POTTSVILLE - The atmosphere at Martz Hall Tuesday night rivaled that of a girls postseason basketball game between Marian and Nativity. Anybody who knows anything about Schuylkill League athletics knows that whenever those two teams get together at Martz Hall the crowds are amped and the air is electric.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011
bob ford/times news Panther Valley's Amy Yusella (32) goes high to spike the ball over Blue Mountain's Taylor McGlone (19).

The Panther Valley girls' volleyball team entered the opening round of the District 11 Class AA playoffs already knowing what it had to do in order to succeed.

The only thing that stood in its way from moving on was a familiar foe in Schuylkill League counterpart Blue Mountain.

It was a bit more comforting already knowing what the Eagles were all about, especially scoring a regular season victory over them. Senior middle hitter Deanna Focht knew the Lady Panthers had to take this playoff game seriously regardless of any prior meeting, however.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011
bob ford/times news Marian's Marykate Sherkness (7) goes high to get a kill against Salem Christian.

It's safe to say that the Marian Fillies (15-2) volleyball team is talented. They showed just that on Halloween night dismantling Salem Christian in the District 11 Quarterfinals. It took the Fillies a little under an hour to take care of business in three straight sets 25-10, 25-11, and 25-10.

Most sports enthusiasts would agree a young team will have its struggles early on and that's exactly how the Fillies started their season. Who can blame them? The Fillies seven-girl rotation includes three freshman, two sophomores, and two juniors.

Friday, October 28, 2011
ron gower/times news filephoto Pleasant Valley's Breanna Joseph sets the ball as teammate Stephanie Schmitt looks on during the MVC semifinals.

DINGMANS FERRY – After Tuesday's semi-final win over Stroudsburg, Pleasant Valley head coach John Gesiskie said that he believed which ever team made the fewest mistakes in Thursday's final would end up the victor.

He couldn't have been more correct.

Friday, October 28, 2011
bob ford/times news Northwestern's Haley Yost

BETHLEHEM – Both Tyler Stelmack and Amber Carroll hung with the leader as long as they could then held on. Both were able to keep their second-place position and run to silver medals at Thursday's District 11 Cross Country Championships.

Stelmack, the Colonial League champion, ran the boys Class AA race in 17:02, finishing behind only North Schylkill's Brendan Shearn, who won the title in 16:33.

Carroll took second in the girls Class AA race in 21:01, finishing behind Katherine Downing of Notre Dame (Green Pond), who won the race in 20:34.

Friday, October 28, 2011

With the regular season winding down, most of the guys took a big hit last week, all except for Jason Boris, who has just about locked up the 2011 title.

Not that we are all throwing in the title, but after his 12-3 week, no one is even close to him anymore.

Why does Boris do so well?

Maybe it's because he studies these games for days like there was a big cash prize on the line and the rest of us realize it is for amusement only. Some of our writers even let their friends, mothers or daughters make the picks for them.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Three TIMES NEWS area volleyball teams will be competing in the District 11 playoffs this weekend.

Pleasant Valley, who recently won the Mountain Valley Conference championship, is the No. 2 seed in Class AAA while Marian is also seeded second in Class A.

Panther Valley will be participating in the Class AA tournament and is seeded fourth.

All three teams will be in action Saturday during the quarterfinals, and all three will be playing at their home gyms.

Thursday, October 27, 2011
bob ford/times news Lehighton's Rachel Werley (10) blocks a pass by Jessica Lehr (left) of Palisades.

Kaycie Andrew may have been the smallest player on the field Wednesday afternoon.

Her presence, however, was anything but small.

Andrew scored a pair of first-half goals, both on assists from Sarah Keer, to help the Indians gain a 2-1 victory over Palisades in the quarterfinal round of the District 11 Class AA field hockey playoffs.

"She does great on that left wing," said Lehighton head coach Lamar Long. "She may not be the strongest player we have, but her positioning is great and she seems to always be in the right spot for Sarah to send the ball to her.

Thursday, October 27, 2011
bob ford/times news Marian's Abby O'Donnell (27) goes up at the net against Tri-Valley as teammate Sophia Myers (28) moves in from behind.

POTTSVILLE – They said one team didn't have enough experience on the court to be there.

They said another team didn't have enough wins in the league to be there.

But Marian and Panther Valley both found their way to Martz Hall last night as Division Champions to compete in the Schuylkill League Tournament.

However, it was the one team that no one seemed to be talking about that proved it deserved to be there all along.

Thursday, October 27, 2011
Emmaus eliminates Bears

Both Pleasant Valley coach Chris Pachuta and his counterpart at Emmaus John Cari agree that the gap has closed between the top soccer teams in the Mountain Valley Conference and those in the Lehigh Valley Conference.

The Bears put up a strong battle against the fourth-seeded Hornets, who went unbeaten in the LVC during the regular season. But Emmaus found the back of the net once in each half and kept the 13th seeded Bears off the board in recording a 2-0 win on the turf at Emmaus' Memorial Field.