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Winter Sports

Thursday, December 15, 2011
ron gower/times news Jeo Dalessio of Panther Valley

Panther Valley head coach Pat Crampsie has seen one important constant in his team during the first week of the season defense.

So, despite some offensive struggles in their first three games, the Panthers have been able to record a pair of victories.

Wednesday night, the Panthers defeated Freeland MMI, 46-29, thanks in large part to their defensive effort.

"Absolutely, our defense has been solid," Crampsie said. "We thought our 1-3-1 would be effective tonight. It put pressure on MMI, denied passing lanes and cut off penetration opportunities."

Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Jim Thorpe girls basketball team and the Northwestern wrestling team both posted victories on Wednesday.

GIRLS BASKETBALL

Weatherly-Jim Thorpe

Jim Thorpe used a big first half to run away with a 60-35 non-league victory over Weatherly.

Celeste Robinson scored 16 of her game-high 28 points in the first quarter to lead the Olympians. Chelsea Smelas added 13 points for the Thorpe.

Alicia Panzarella went off in the fourth quarter to score all of her team-high 11 points for Weatherly.

Jim Thorpe moves to 2-0 on the season. Weatherly drops to 1-2.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011
BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS Marian's Lindsay Nemeth goes up for a shot from in close as Lehighton's Maria Magyar defends.

When you think Marian Fillies basketball, you think defense.

The Fillies did nothing to damage that reputation Tuesday against Lehighton.

Marian forced 14 first quarter turnovers and went on to post a 67-26 non-league victory over the Indians.

"I thought we did a nice job of turning defense into offense," said Marian coach Paul Brutto. "That's what we're hoping to get out of our press. We forced a lot of turnovers and then converted them into points."

Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Panther Valley's Czar Founds gets set to escape from Tamaqua's Steve Matukonis before recording a fall in 3:11 of their 132-pound bout. The Panthers gained a 45-34 victory in the match. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS

Panther Valley head coach Tim Robb knew he had a young team coming into the 2011-12 season, so it's safe to say that the veteran coach's expectations were very realistic heading into their first couple of matches. The Panther wrestlers wanted to give Robb an early Christmas present and so far this year that's exactly what they have done.

The Panthers won three out of their five matches at the Jim Thorpe Duals this past weekend and followed that performance up with a 45-34 win over a solid Tamaqua team on Tuesday.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011
NANCY SCHOLZ/Special to THE TIMES NEWS Northwestern's Sabrina Mertz drives the lane while Pen Argyl's Catherine Clause attempts to provide some opposition.

Northwestern and Palmerton won their Colonial League girls basketball openers, while Pleasant Valley also came away with victories on Tuesday.

In other action, the Jim Thorpe boys also picked up a win.

GIRLS BASKETBALL

No. Lehigh-Bangor

Bangor held the Lady 'Dawgs to just 27 points in the game as the Slaters took home the Colonial League victory 39-27.

Samantha Hopkins led Bangor with 12 points with Audrey Schiavone helping out with 9. Aimee Oertner led all scorers with 17 points for Northern Lehigh.

BANGOR

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Catasauqua put together a nine-point run in the first quarter and another eight-point run before halftime to put host Palmerton behind the eight-ball early and then held on late for a 67-55 win in the Colonial League opener for both boys teams on Tuesday night.

The Roughies built up a 10-point lead in the first quarter and extended it to 20 points in the second quarter before the Bombers cut it to 14 at the break.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011
MIKE FEIFEL/TIMES NEWS Northern Lehigh's Devin Glose dribbles the ball up court during Tuesday night's Colonial league battle with Bangor.

Both Northern Lehigh and Bangor knew that the game would be close and that both programs should be contending for the top spot in the Colonial League North Division.

When the final horn sounded, the fans on hand weren't disappointed. They were treated to an impressive contest with the Slaters pulling out a 50-41 win.

At halftime, Northern Lehigh had the three-point lead, 18-15. However, in the second half, the Slaters utilized some strong baseline drives, interior passing and impeccable free throw shooting to pull out the huge win.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Tamaqua got wins from its boys' basketball team and girls' swim team in scholastic action on Monday.

BOYS BASKETBALL

Minersville-Tamaqua

After struggling offensively in first half, Tamaqua erupted after intermission to post a 57-53 non-league win over Minersville.

The Raiders (2-0) trailed 20-13 at halftime, but Matt Kurek helped ignite the Tamaqua comeback. Kurek finished with a team-high 18 points. He got plenty of suport from teammates Jake Fegley and Brett Kosciolek, who added 10 points apiece.

Cole Weachock scored 23 points to lead the Miners.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011
bob ford/times news Marian's Damian Richards (23) stretches to keep control of the ball as Alex Guyn of Lehighton applies defensive pressure from behind.

Marian coach John Patton saw his young team pull together and earn its first win of the young season on Monday night.

After dropping their first two games, including one where they let a late lead slip away, the Colts posted a 38-33 victory over Lehighton.

"Unlike the other night [Saturday against Panther Valley] when we weren't able to hold the lead, tonight we found a way to finish the job," said Patton, whose team returns just one starter from a year ago.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

It was a tale of two halves for the Panther Valley girl's basketball team Monday night. Fortunately, for the Lady Panthers the second half was much better than the first, including a stellar third quarter effort by PV.

Panther Valley used the third to turn around their evening holding Weatherly to just seven points in the period on its way to a 55-53 win over the host Wreckers.