Thursday, January 29, 2015
Bob Ford/Times News Freshman Kayley Kovac of Jim Thorpe currently leads the Times News area in scoring. Kovac is one of many freshmen girls players who are making impacts on their teams this season.

In the traditional progression of athletic talent at the high school level, a varsity basketball team's roster is comprised of juniors and seniors, sprinkled with a few sophomores, while freshmen are relegated to play at the junior varsity level.

Several area girls' teams have thrown that tradition out the window.

Lehighton, Jim Thorpe, and Pleasant Valley are three schools that are not only starting freshmen game after game, their "rookies" are performing with above average success.

AP Sports

In an early season basketball game against Holy Redeemer, Marian's Ashley Fannick was driving toward the basket for a left -handed layup when she fell awkwardly to the floor. After being helped off the court, she knew exactly what had happened to her right knee.

Tests confirmed that Fannick had torn her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). She will not play the rest of her senior season. To make it worse, this was Fannick's second time tearing her ACL, the other happened to her left knee during her freshman year while also driving to the basket during an open practice.

Competitiveness drives Tribe's Keer
She is asked a question about being competitive. And before she answers, a wry little grin appears. The grin eventually becomes a full-fledged smile the kind of smile that says the level of her competition on a scale from 1 to 10 is actually a 12. So it's not surprising when she replies. "I'm very competitive," said Lehighton field hockey standout Sarah Keer. "I think that's because I come from a family where everyone played sports.
After losing the past two Saturday nights to rain, Mahoning Valley Speedway racers came out loaded for bear as the pit are swelled to a season high 131 race cars making for a jam packed night of stock car action at the Lehighton paved 14-mile oval.
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS Lehighton's Tiffany Thompson gets set to shoot as Northern Lehigh's Jessica Olewine (left) and Emily Bevins (hidden) defend.
The Lehighton girls earned every bit of their 43-38 victory over Northern Lehigh Thursday night in the Lady Indian Holiday Classic. Heading into the fourth quarter, Lehighton had a 38-28 lead over the Bulldogs. Both teams exchanged baskets to open the quarter. The Bulldogs went on a run early in the quarter. Kelsey Follweiler hit a three-pointer with 5:22 left to play, which sparked a 9-0 spurt. The Indians clung to a three-point lead with 3:41 left to play, 40-37.
With the statewide flintlock muzzleloader and archery deer seasons coming to a close during the upcoming week in Pennsylvania, many hunters will begin turning their attention to predator hunting and trapping during the upcoming months. As such, many will be taking advantage of the free seminars being presented at the "Predator Classic" at Cabela's Hamburg, Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 10 and 11. A series of four, one-hour seminars will be presented at the same time both days in order that those wishing to attend all sessions may do so. Here is the Saturday and Sunday schedule:
Blue Mountain captured its league championship and advanced to the state tournament at Spring-Ford this weekend in Cal Ripken League 10U play. The team, comprised of players from East Penn Township, West Penn Township and the Northern Lehigh School District, will play two games on both Saturday, July 12 and Sunday, July 13. Team members include, front row, from left, Grant Olewine, Logan Davis, Evan Zambo, Ryan Hammond, Josh Kistler and John Abidelli. Second row, Brett Misera, Brayden Hamby, Matt Frame, Zach Chamberlain, Riley Albert and Teague Hertzog.