3 area teams playing tonight
The dust might not have settled for some local basketball teams that still have a regular season game or two to squeeze in, but the main focus is on league playoffs that get under way tonight in the Mountain Valley Conference, Schuylkill League and Colonial League.
The Lehighton girls qualified for the Mountain Valley Conference playoffs, the Northern Lehigh girls made the Colonial League playoffs and the Tamaqua girls open action in the Schuykill League playoffs.
Here's a capsule look at the league playoff matchups:
(At ES South)
No. 3 PM East (12-8) vs. No. 2 PM West (14-8)
The Cards won two of their last three, the last being a 60-39 victory over Pleasant Valley on Saturday ... The Panthers went to double overtime at Lehighton before coming away with a 42-41 victory on Saturday also ... West is also the defending MVC champion and has won five of its last six games ... It's only loss during that span was to No. 1 seed East Stroudsburg South by three points ... West managed to win both times the two teams met during the regular season by scores of 33-30 back on January 20 and 43-37 on February 12.
No. 4 Lehighton (9-11) vs. No. 1 ES South (19-3)
Indians have a tough week ahead after losing league finale to Pocono Mountain West on Saturday ... They have to either win the league tournament, or beat Tamaqua (on Wednesday) and Tri-Valley (not rescheduled yet) before this weekend to qualify for districts ... Indians dropped a 44-19 contest to the Cavaliers in their first meeting, but played much better the second time around, losing 44-33 ...
FRIDAY: Semifinal winners will meet at 6 p.m. at Pleasant Valley in championship.
(At Martz Hall, Pottsville)
Tamaqua (19-2) vs.
Golden Girls are the defending champion, but lost to the Lady Raiders on January 16 by a 66-58 score ... Nativity has won nine straight since that loss ... Other loss was to Wyoming Valley West in Meyers Tip-off Tournament, 53-36 ... Tamaqua, on the other hand, suffered both of its losses to Pine Grove, another Schuylkill League semifinalist ... Amy Zehner, who is averaging over 22 points a game, scored eight points in the earlier contest ... Elissa Streisel finished with 22 points, while Allison Updike added 21 in the win ... Golden Girl guard Kiely Chaklos is the lone Nativity player averaging in double figures at 13.7 p.p.g. ...
Tri-Valley (17-4) vs.
Pine Grove (19-2)
The Cardinals have a bitter taste in their mouth after losing in last year's semifinal to Nativity 61-52, so they have set sights on reaching the final this time around ... Tri-Valley had to beat Lourdes on Sunday night, 47-34, in a tiebreaker to qualify for the playoffs ... Cards are led by Corrine Ryan averaging 14.6 p.p.g. and Kelly Fidler at 12.9 p.p.g. ... Tri-Valley's leading scorers are freshman Julie Weber (12.6) and freshman Tara Nahodil (10.9) ...
FRIDAY: Semifinal winners will meet at 6 p.m. at Pottsville in championship.
No. 3 Pen Argyl (14-7) vs.
No. 2 So. Lehigh (18-4)
The Green Knights needed a win over Bangor on Saturday to nail down the wild card spot ... They will also squeeze in a non-league game against Stroudsburg on Wednesday to try and better their district seedings with a win ... Pen Argyl has won 10 of last 11 games with lone loss coming to unbeaten Northern Lehigh ... Lost a double overtime decision (52-47) to Southern Lehigh in lone meeting during regular season ... Spartans finished the regular season winning 13 of last 15 games with losses coming to Wilson and Northern Lehigh, the two other semifinalists.
No. 4 Wilson (14-8) vs.
No. 1 No. Lehigh (22-0)
Bulldogs back in league tournament second straight year and are averaging over 50 points a game using mostly just their starting five (four of which are underclassmen) ... Aimee Oertner leads all scorers averaging 17.9 a game, while Sonya Josephson averages 16.9 ... Bulldogs won lone meeting during regular season 47-43 with Oertner and Josephson combining for 31 of the winning team's points ... Sondrine Glovas, averaging 16.7 p.p.g., had 19 points against the Bulldogs ...
FRIDAY: Semifinal winners will meet at 6 p.m. at Freedom High School in championship.