Josephson, Oertner reach milestones
mike feifel/times news Northern Lehigh basketball players Aimee Oertner (left) Sonya Josephson topped the 1,000-point mark within eight days of each other.
Over the years, Sonya Josephson and Aimee Oertner have shared a lot of memories on the basketball court.
The first one happened when Josephson was in third grade and Oertner was in second grade. The two Northern Lehigh girls' varsity basketball players were able to play on their first team together.
Nine years later, Josephson and Oertner shared some of their fondest memories yet on the hardwood when they became the 20th and 21st players in Northern Lehigh High School history to score 1,000 points in their varsity careers.
"It is definitely another fine memory attained together," Aimee Oertner said. "We're best of friends. It was kind of cool that it happened that way it did because we're always together. We're always enjoying good memories together."
"But, this is one that I don't think anybody could forget not even us and especially those who watched us do it on those nights."
On Friday, January 14th, Oertner surpassed the 1,000-point plateau in a 56-38 victory over Notre Dame of Green Pond. Last Saturday, Josephson was able to join her teammate as she reached the mark in a 66-57 win over Blue Mountain.
In the span of just eight days, Oertner and Josephson became the 10th and 11th Lady Bulldogs to achieve the impressive milestone. It was the first time in 10 years that a Lady Bulldog had done it Courtney Wertman was the last to do so back in 2001.
Josephson was glad the two friends were able to cherish the moment in the same season.
"A lot of teams never even get the chance to have one person on their team score a 1,000 points, yet we were able to have two of us do it the same season," said Josephson, who currently sits with 1,031 points in her career. "It's obviously a great feeling for both of us with Aimee getting it in her junior year and me in my senior year. It was just an incredible feeling for both of us.
"However, without all of our teammates, neither one of us could have gotten it."
Early in the third quarter against Notre Dame of Green Pond, Oertner got loose inside for an easy right-handed layup to reach the milestone. Meanwhile, Josephson topped the 1,000-point mark with a shot from beyond the arc as time expired in the first quarter against Blue Mountain.
"I thought it was kind of actually cool because Sonya hit a three-pointer and that's kind of like her trademark," smiled Aimee Oertner, who currently sports 1,061 points to her credit. "I got mine on a layup and that's usually how I get all my points."
While Oertner and Josephson have added themselves to the record books as individuals, Northern Lehigh coach Dave Oertner stated that both of them want nothing more than to accomplish something together as a team.
"We even said to them the other day, "Their names are going to be up on that banner, but now we got to work on getting a team year up on another banner," Oertner said. "That's what they really wanted from the start of the year and that's what they have been talking about all along.
"They want to be able to say, 'Hey, we had one of the best teams ever in this school.' They want to leave their mark in that sense as a team rather than as just individuals."
Josephson echoed that remark.
"Obviously, after we graduate, Aimee and I will have our names on a banner," Josephson said. "But, we would much rather have a banner as a team winning a league or district championship. Hopefully, we can have both titles this year. Hopefully, we can go further into the state playoffs as well."
STREAK HALTED ..... Last Saturday, the Lehighton boys' basketball team was able to get a huge monkey off its back.
For the first time since December of 2008, the Indians tasted victory. Lehighton's 66-51 victory over Catasauqua put an end to a 47-game stretch without a victory.
With that streak snapped, Lehighton is looking to put an end to another losing skid. The Indians are currently in the midst of a 44 game losing streak against Mountain Valley Conference foes. The last time Lehighton recorded a win against an MVC opponent was back on Feb. 2, 2007 when coach Caszy Kosciolek guided the Indians to a 52-50 win over Pleasant Valley.
DELICH MILESTONE ..... On the very same night that Northern Lehigh junior Aimee Oertner accomplished a milestone as a player, the Palmerton girls' basketball team helped head coach Don Delich attain a milestone of his own.
With a dominating 71-35 victory over Wilson on Friday, January 14, the Lady Bombers gave Delich the 100th victory of his coaching career.
Delich, in his eighth season as the Bombers' head coach, has a 101-85 career record.
GOING TO THE DANCE ..... The Marian boys' became the first boys basketball team in the TIMES NEWS area to secure a spot in the District 11 playoffs, while the Jim Thorpe and Palmerton became the fourth and fifth girls teams in the coverage area to punch their postseason tickets.
With a 60-46 Schuylkill League victory over Williams Valley last Wednesday, the Colts qualified for the District 11 playoffs for the sixth straight season.
While the Colts have been a regular in the District 11 playoffs, the Jim Thorpe girls will be making their first postseason appearance since 2002. The Lady Olympians secured their spot by defeating Shenandoah last Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the Lady Bombers made it three straight years in the postseason with an easy 53-22 Colonial League win over Salisbury on Monday night.
Those three teams join the Tamaqua, Marian and Northern Lehigh girls, who had previously qualified..
STATEWIDE RECOGNITION ..... The Northern Lehigh and Tamaqua girls both have spots in the latest statewide basketball poll released by the Harrisburg Patriot Newspaper.
The Lady Bulldogs are ranked fourth in Class AA and the Lady Raiders are ranked sixth in Class AAA.
In addition, the Marian Fillies are listed as honorable mention in Class A.
Other District 11 girls teams in the poll are: Nazareth (4A, HM); Northampton (4A, HM); Parkland (4A, HM); Central Catholic (3A, 8th); Suthern Lehigh (3A, HM); Tri-Valley (1A, 6th); and Nativity (1A, HM).
District 11 boys teams inthe poll are: Liberty (4A, 3rd); Allen (4A, 5th); Easton (4A, HM); Central Catholic (3A, HM); and Pine Grove (2A, HM).