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Local Sports

Friday, October 14, 2011
NANCY SCHOLZ/Special to THE TIMES NEWS Pleasant Valley's top doubles team of Lauren Heckelman (right) and Sara Elmontacir (left) shake hands after falling out of the District 11 3A Doubles tournament at West End Racquet Club in Allentown on Thursday.

ALLENTOWN – Pleasant Valley's valiant comeback bid met a cruel fate in the opening round of the District 11 Class AAA Doubles Tennis Tournament on Thursday.

The Bears' top doubles team of Lauren Heckelman and Sara Elmontacir were routed 6-1 by Nazareth's Cayleah Markulics and Sinmi Opeyemi in the opening set.

But Pleasant Valley bounced back to win the second set, 6-4.

That's where a combination of bad luck and what Pleasant Valley coach Mark Allison called a "questionable decision" came into play.

Friday, October 14, 2011
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS Northwestern's Clay Collins hits ball with his head during soccer action last night at Northern Lehigh, while looking on are, l-r, Ryan Perkowski and Channing Shiffert of the Bulldogs and Isaiah Danner of Northwestern.

Northwestern had a big day picking up wins in boys soccer and field hockey on Thursday afternoon.

BOYS SOCCER

Northwestern-No. Lehigh

Northwestern edged Northern Lehigh 3-2 in Colonial League action.

Kyle Willis, Jeremy Ettl and Chad Horn all had goals for the Tigers, with Willis accounting for two assists.

For Northern Lehigh (10-8 overall, 6-7 league), Ryan Perkowski and Thatcher George scored goals, which were both assisted by Tyler Hoppes.

Friday, October 14, 2011
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS Palmerton's Greta Hartsell, left, and Northern Lehigh's Kelsey Follweiler battle for ball in field hockey action at Northern Lehigh. In the background is NL's Casey Gavalla (16).

Palmerton and Northern Lehigh battled it out in field hockey on Thursday and it was a heated match.

In one of both teams' last field hockey games of the regular season, the motivation was there for both to pull out a win.

When the dust cleared, it was the Bulldogs who pulled out a 2-1 victory to clinch the fourth seed for the Colonial League tournament.

That alone served up enough emotion for both sides and Palmerton wanted to play spoiler.

Friday, October 14, 2011

It's getting near "Crunch time"!

Heading into Week No. 7 of the high school football season it's that time of the year when teams who still have a shot at the post-season playoffs give it their best shot week in and week out as we head down the homestretch.

The middle of the pack in our Grid Picks race is getting pretty crowded so it's definitely time to make a move.

Most of the games on our list have playoffs implications in some way so lets not waste any time and get to it:

Thursday, October 13, 2011
Tamaqua runners, from left, Kelsey Patrick, Amber Carroll and Cecily Kohlmeir lead a pack of runners up a hill during the early stages of Wednesday's cross country meet against Blue Mountain.

Prior to the Senior Night festivities, the Tamaqua girls' cross country team wanted to make its seniors' last home meet a memorable one.

At the same time, the Lady Raiders were focused on gaining momentum with a victory over a Division I foe heading into next week's Schuylkill League Team Championship Meet.

The Lady Raiders got everything they wanted with a 23-32 win over Blue Mountain Wednesday in Tamaqua.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Jim Thorpe cross country teams split a tri-meet on Wednesday.

CROSS COUNTRY

Pine Grove-Pottsville-JT

Jim Thorpe picked up wins over Pine Grove, but fell to Pottsville in its Schuylkill League meet.

Two Pottsville runners set course-records on the day. Paige Stoner set the girls' record with a 19:43, while Jake Plachko finished with a time of 17:54 on the boys' side.

John Condly was the highest finisher for Jim Thorpe. He placed fourth in the boys' race. Fellow Olympian Caitlin Liscinski placed sixth on the girls' side.

GIRLS

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Northwestern at Northern Lehigh

WHEN: Friday, 7 p.m.

RECORDS: Northwestern 4-2 (4-2 Colonial League); Northern Lehigh 5-1 (5-1 Colonial League)

LAST WEEK'S RESULTS: Palmerton def. Northwestern 21-14; Pen Argyl def. Northern Lehigh 14-8

NORTHWESTERN'S IMPACT PLAYERS: QB Ty Cunningham (has had a hand in a TD every week), RB Alex Bobbyn (6-103 rec last week), RB Payton Bachman (eight receptions last week)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

When Palmerton receiver Monty Szukics came to head coach Chris Walkowiak with a broken hand right before the start of the season one can imagine Walkowiak and his staff weren't very happy. Szukics, who hurt his hand playing basketball, told Walkowiak "I was only doing what you told me to coach, which was to stay active."

Szukics recovered from his injury and was certainly active last Friday night against Northwestern. The Palmerton senior caught two touchdown passes along with intercepting two passes in the second-half to earn week six TIMES NEWS Player of the Week.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Northern Lehigh School Board on Monday approved the following cocurricular appointment for the 2011-12 school year:

- Mike Lehtonen, assistant girls basketball coach, $4,469

The board also approved the following individuals as cocurricular volunteers for the 2011-12 school year:

- Barry Herman, assistant softball coach (JV)

- Suzanne Lynn, assistant girls basketball coach, pending verification of missing personnel items

- Katie Guarini, assistant field hockey coach, pending verification of missing personnel items

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Lehighton Area School District is accepting applications until Friday, Oct. 21 for the following spring coaching postions: assistant baseball coach; assistant girls soccer coach (multiple positions); assistant softball coach; and head tennis coach.

Interested applicants, should email or send their letter of interest, resume, and Acts 34/114 and 151 clearances to bcortese@lehighton.org