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Local Sports

Thursday, December 8, 2011
ron gower/times news Tamaqua's varsity wrestling squad consists of front row, from left, Joel Kulick, Steven Matukonis, Derek Hill, Colin Mashack. Kneeling, James Weeks, Nicholas Toth, Dustin Silkowski, Dylan Rynkiewicz, Brandan Silkowski, assistant coach Shane McCabe. Back row, head coach Jim McCabe, D J Jones, Tom Betzler, Cody Houser, Luke Matsago, Michael Betz, Evan Mashack, volunteer coach Jon Mashack, and assistant coach Greg Rynkiewicz.

The Tamaqua girls basketball team received a lot of notariety last season, but it wasn't the only winter sports team making noise for Raider nation.

Actually, one could argue that the Blue Raider grapplers were the most successful team out of all the Tamaqua winter sports teams. The reasoning behind that argument was the Raiders brought home their first-ever State Champion in 215-pound Garth Lakitsky.

Thursday, December 8, 2011
Ron Gower/times news Tamaqua's boys basketball team consists of, front row, from left , Michael Weinert, Jake Fegley, Dalton Nunemacher, Matthew Yeakel, Drew Chartier, Boaz Rottet, Zachary Wargula. Second row, Jacob Wenzel, Trevor Skripko, Tyler Skripko, Adam Bates, Adam Frantz, Matthew Kurek, Tyler Krell. Back row, head coach Caszy Kosciolek, Derek Rottet, Tyler Skripo, assistant coach J. C. Dietz, Brett Kosciolek, Joseph Marcin, Tanner Kehl, and assistant coach Barry Wargula.

It's no secret throughout the Schuylkill League ranks that the Tamaqua boys basketball program hasn't had a lot of success the past seven years.

Since Tamaqua last made the post-season in 2003, the Raiders have accumulated a dismal 23-139 overall record.

Rebuilding a program is never an easy task, especially a program that lingers in the Schuylkill League's Division 1 with the likes of Pottsville, Blue Mountain, North Schuylkill, Jim Thorpe, Pine Grove, and Panther Valley.

Thursday, December 8, 2011
bob ford/times news The Weatherly boys basketball team will include, front row, from left, Brett Kelly, Adam Capone. Middle row, Luke Reiner, Josh Reiner, James Belletiere, Scott Coll, Nick Miller. Back row, Kyle Miller, Joseph Haganey, Michael Baade, Tyler Sipler, Charles Wallish, Brett Stallone.

Seven seniors graduated from the last season's Weatherly varsity basketball program that struggled through a 2-22 campaign.

However, with fifth-year head coach Ron Cann at the helm, the team is taking a realistic approach to the season and should be more than capable of getting things together for the Wreckers.

Thursday, December 8, 2011
Front: Tracy Galada, Jaime Dougherty, Alicia Panzarella. Middle: Tea Heister, Sara Heister, Devon Bizarre, Erin Dougherty, Jasmine Rivera. Back: Jessica Polchin, Kelly Parker, Dominique Adamczyk, Courtney Lovett, Alexis Boyarski, Cheyanne Wallish, Samantha Hartz.

Losing one player from the previous year's graduating class is often times a good thing for a sports program. With that one person being Brittany Hinkle, Weatherly's sole big girl from a year ago, that might not be a good thing after all.

Hinkle's departure means sixth year head coach Paul Hadzick will have to shuffle things around a bit in 2011-12 if Weatherly wants to improve on last seasons's(9-13 record.

Hadzick is planning on doing just that.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

December 8, 1961 Jack Morgan pours in a game-high 27 points to help Jim Thorpe gain a 61-47 victory over Lehighton. The Olympians, coached by Kenny Kline, hold a narrow lead at halftime before outscoring the Indians 36-24 over the final two frames. George Armbruster contributes to the win by scoring 12 points while teammate Don Deemer finishes with nine. For Lehighton, Al Lichtenwalter ends with a team-high 12 points.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

During Monday's meeting of the Lehighton Area School Board, the following coaching appointments were made:

Christi Carfagno was named softball assistant coach.

Kyle Fisher and Jared Brownmiller were named volunteer wrestling coaches.

Thursday, December 8, 2011
ron Gower/times news Tamaqua varsity girls basketball team members are, front row, from left, Emily Pratka, Bailey Hartung, Paige Demeriades, Vanessa Solt, Jordan Fucci. Second row, Kayla Hope, Caitlin Trainer, Maria Streisel, Brianna Wittig, Ashley Walker. Back row, Kori Kabilko, Carly Sassaman, Jaclin Valasek, Amanda Solt, and Christine Streisel.

As far as championships go, Tamaqua's 2010-11 title sweep could not have been more impressive or more difficult.

First, the Lady Raiders had to fight their way through the Schuylkill League one of the best girls basketball leagues in all of Pennsylvania.

Then, they had to find a way to beat perennial powerhouse Allentown Central Catholic in the District 11 Class AAA field.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Sophomore Ramzy Burns of the Muhlenberg College women's cross country team was named to the Centennial Conference Academic Honor Roll for excellence in the classroom and on the course.

A biochemistry major, Burns finished 55th out of 112 runners at the conference championships and then helped the Mules place seventh in the team race at the NCAA Mideast Regional meet, the best finish in school history.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011
RICH GEORGE/Special to THE TIMES NEWS Palmerton boys basketball team members include: Front, from left, Logan Lesher, Tyler Snyder, Mike Horvath, Spencer Shigo, Brett Snyder and Gabe Leon. Back row, from left, Matt Leaver, Tyler Svetik, Ben Andrews, Kyle Ruch, Austin Luers, Mark Quinn and Cody Geist.

Mick Stefanek is no stranger when it comes to TIMES NEWS Area boys basketball circles.

Stefanek, who took over the Palmerton boys basketball program over the summer, was a highly successful head coach at Marian High School before resigning and taking a year off away from the game. And now he is in charge of the boys program in the same school district he teaches in.

The Blue Bombers return a group of experienced players who have grown as a unit over the years and Stefanek hopes to see some of the veterans through what he hopes will be a rewarding season.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

After putting up an NCAA automatic qualifying time in the 400 individual medley, and setting a new school record in the 200 individual medley, Indiana University senior swimmer Allysa Vavra is the Big Ten Swimmer of the Week for the first time in her career.