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Donegal Swimmers Find Success in State Meet March 21, 2019

Donegal swimmers Jenna Park, Ethan Shonk, Claire O'Neill, Jake Houck, and Jordynn Park all travelled to Lewisburg recently to take on the best competition Pennsylvania had to offer during the 2018-2019 PIAA championships held March 13-16 at Bucknell University. After the water had settled, the talented group walked away with four medals and three finishes in the consolation finals as well.

Over a period of two days, each event begins with a preliminary heat which determines who will advance into the next round with the sixteen fastest times qualifying. In the finals, the top eight compete for medals while the bottom eight swim in the consolation finals.

Sisters Jenna and Jordynn joined O'Neill in the girl's competition during Wednesday's 2A events with all three earning a second swim in the afternoon sessions. Fresh off a new school record set during the District Three championships in the 200 IM which earned her a silver medal, O'Neill placed 12th in the prelims with a time of 2:11.18.

In her finals swim, O'Neill dropped slightly off the pace finishing in 2:12.05, to take 13th overall but was back at it on Thursday competing in the grueling 500 freestyle.

"Claire made it to B finals in both her events," noted coach Alison Kreider. "The 500 free is not an easy event to have to swim twice in one day, it takes a toll on your legs."

In her preliminary heat O'Neill finished 15th with a 5:20.09 and, despite bouncing back in the final race to drop 1.45 seconds with a 5:18.64, wound up taking 16th overall.

Also coming off a school record in the 100 butterfly with a 57.22 in the District meet, Jordynn qualified ninth and, along with sister Jenna who posted a 23.93 to finish sixth in the 50 freestyle prelims, advanced to the A finals. In those heats, Jordynn placed 13th in 58.48, while Jenna, despite a slight loss in time, took seventh with a 24.17.

In Thursday's action it was Jordynn's turn as she qualified sixth in the 100 breaststroke with a 1:05.08 and then placed seventh overall in the finals with a 52.42. Jenna, swimming in the 100 freestyle, missed the cut during prelims placing 18th with a time of 54.14.

"Jordynn was coming back from having the flu so I was pleased with how she fought and glad she made it back to the A finals in the 100 breaststroke," stated Kreider. "Jenna was also under the weather at the meet and with it being her senior meet I felt bad for her...Sad to see her have to finish her high school career sick at this meet."

As the youngest Donegal swimmer, Shonk came into the meet with a District bronze medal in the 100 backstroke, but hit some choppy water in the prelims, finishing just under his seed time with a 52.42 and placing 21st.

"Ethan was not sure what to expect since he was a freshman," said Kreider. "His goal was to move up in placing and be the fastest freshman there. He got a best time and was the fastest freshman."

Houck enjoyed the most success out of the five, earning two medals and just barely missing a first-place finish in the 100 butterfly. Following his number one prelim time of 49.13, which shaved .73 off his District gold time of 51.00, he found himself in a battle with Belle Vernon's Ian Shahan. In an extremely close finish, Houck was a mere .09 off of Shahan's first place finish of 48.83, touching in 48.92 to claim silver.

In the 100 freestyle on Thursday, Houck qualified fifth with a time of 46.88, slightly above his seeding time of 46.47 to once again make the finals. In that heat he set a personal best time of 46.44, which was good enough for a fifth-place finish.

"Jake works so hard in the pool and outside the pool and it paid off at States. I know he was happy with his time but he was hoping for the gold," said Kreider.

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Fissella Grabs State Swim Medal March 18, 2019

Andre Fissella's time of 57.37 seconds earned him eighth place in the 100-yard breaststroke preliminaries on Saturday at Bucknell University's Kinney Natatorium as the senior swimmer represented Hempfield at the PIAA Class 3A state championship meet. With that time, Fissella shaved some time off his seeding time of 57.54 and qualified for the finals.

In the finals, Fissella earned eight place with a time of 57.85.

"Breaststroke has always been a strong event for him," said head coach Brittany Bertoli. "Every year the state competition gets faster and faster. Even though he didn't make states last year, Andre had such drive and determination to make it this year."

The state championships began on Friday where the Hempfield standout competed in the 200 individual medley, again lowering his time from that of his qualifying 1:55.71. Fissella registered a 1:55.56 but finished 21st in a very competitive PIAA field, thus not qualifying for the finals.

"He had his best time in the 200 individual medley by two-tenths of a second," Bertoli pointed out.

The coach also commented on how a friendly rivalry between Fissella and Logan Smith from a Lancaster-Lebanon League rival school helped motivate the Hempfield swimmer for the breaststroke event.

"Leading up to the state meet, he has had a friendly rivalry with Logan Smith, who touched slightly in front of Andre in the league championship meet and in districts," Bertoli explained. "Having that rivalry, I think, made him swim better this year. In the end, his event time ended up being better. He touched slightly ahead of Logan in the state finals."

Smith finished 10th at 57.27 in the 100 breaststroke finals.

The fact that many swimmers in the L-L League swim together at the club level in the off-season, district and state meets see the breaking down of barriers to some degree; in fact, there is a certain level of camaraderie.

"You see them supporting one another because of that," Bertoli said, referring to representatives of the L-L League competing at states. "You don't have as many swimmers competing for your team."

With Fissella as well as seniors like Charles Saylor, Jayden Corrigan, Shawn Splain, Aidan Turner and Nate Stuckey leaving the program, Bertoli said that the boys' team might be rebuilding next year.

"I think next year is going to be kind of a rebuilding year," she said. "We are going to look for this year's sophomores and juniors - guys like Johnathan Sescilla, Xander Hughes and Josh Sahd, for example - to be the leaders for the younger swimmers."

And what about the girls' team in 2019?

"We only had one senior girl on this year's team," she replied. "We bring back the majority of our team, including Katie Yoder, Maggie Shaffer, Sophia Vitko, Katelyn Wiglesworth, Rory Cantwell and others. We hope that as they develop and get better and with some strong freshmen to support them, we'll continue to grow as a team."

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Gingrich Leads Towship Swimmers at States March 18, 2019

Senior Charlie Gingrich earned a pair of medals and was part of a relay team that medaled as the Manheim Township boys' and girls' swim teams competed in the PIAA Class 3A state championships at Bucknell University's Kinney Natatorium on Friday and Saturday, March 15-16.

In Friday's preliminaries, Gingrich finished second with a time of 48.35 in the 100-yard butterfly event. In doing so, he improved on his qualifying time of 48.79. He then went on to claim a third-place tie in the finals against very tough competition, which included Conestoga High School's Brendan Burns, the state record holder in the 100 fly.

Gingrich tied Kimani Gregory of Penn Hills for third as both swimmers clocked in at 48.50.

"Charlie swam a very good, consistent race," said head coach Dan Graybill. "He had good underwaters in his turns. That's what you look for in that competitive level.

"If you come off your turns and have an outstanding underwater, you can catch up with the individual ahead of you," Graybill added.

Burns swam at a record pace of 46.79, breaking his 2018 record of 47.04.

"Brendan Burns is very good," Graybill agreed.

In the 200 freestyle relay finals on Friday, Gingrich, Connor Paladino, Conor Brenton and Jackson Prevost finished eighth with a time of 1:26.62. This quartet's qualifying time was nearly identical at 1:26.16, which was good for sixth place in the prelims.

"Both Conor Brenton and Connor Paladino split 21.0 in the 200 freestyle relay," Graybill noted. "That was good for the 50 free.

"We had Charlie lead off because when you're a leadoff leg, you can break any kind of record for the 50 since you're doing it from a flat start. He had a split of 20.36. That was under the qualifying time for All-American.

"Paladino is a sophomore and I anticipate he will be making more appearances at states. Brenton is going to Arizona next year," Graybill added.

Gabby Stramara also medaled, taking eighth place in the girls' 100 butterfly on Friday. She had a seventh-place time of 56.44 in the preliminaries and posted a time of 57.36 in the finals.

"Anytime a freshman makes the state meet, it's a really big deal," Graybill said of Stramara's accomplishment. Gabby finished eighth. There was only one freshman ahead of her.

I think she's going to have a bright future."

In Saturday's preliminaries, Gingrich and fellow senior Rob Perot qualified for the finals in the 100- and 500-free events, respectively. Gingrich's time of 45.61 was slightly higher than his seed time of 45.35. Perot shaved five seconds off his seeding time of 4:41.66 by recording a 4:36.51 in the prelims. Both boys finished eighth.

In the finals, Gingrich earned an eighth-place finish at 46.20 while Perot stayed consistently under 4:40 with his eighth-place time of 4:36.80 in the 500.

"Rob Perot broke our school record in the 500 freestyle," Graybill noted. "He had a favorable drop from the district meet. He finaled and finished eighth. It's always a big deal to finish in the top eight. Our state is one of the top-five in the nation.

"Anybody who gets into the 4:20's or 4:30's has to have a lot of stamina and endurance," added Graybill, referring to the long-distance freestyle event. "That's great for a school time.

"Rob Perot, last year in the states was in the consolation heat," Graybill said. "This year he graduated to the A-final. He's going on to Vassar College next year and plans to swim there."

The time for Gingrich in the 100 fly also qualified him for another honor in addition to earning a medal at states.

"One of the nice things about Charlie's time is that not only did it break out existing school record, it made him eligible for automatic All-American status," said Graybill. "His time ensured him a place in that. With the All-American certification, it's the top 100 relay and individual times in the country."

Township also had state qualifiers in the 200 medley relay for both the girls' and boys' squads. In Friday's preliminaries, Brynn Magrini, Olivia Pyott, Stramara and Morgan Wylie-Thal took 23rd place at 1:49.88. Stramara and Magrini both being freshmen and Pyott a sophomore gives the team continued hope for the future.

Pyott swam the breaststroke, Magrini the backstroke, Stramara the fly and Wylie-Thal the freestyle at 50 yards each.

"Olivia tied her best time in the breaststroke split with 29.7 seconds in the medley relay," said Graybill. Morgan Wylie-Thal split a 24.7 and that's a very good time for her. She has been working hard to get her time under 25 seconds."

The boy's 200 MR team consisted of senior Gage Mandrell, the Gingrich brothers- Charlie and Henry - along with Prevost at the anchor position. This foursome finished 21st at 1:37.54.

The girls' squad also featured Pyott's performance in the 100 breaststroke and freshman Liz Perot's 500 freestyle. Pyott's time of 1:08.79 was good for 31st place in the prelims while Perot earned 22nd place at 5:10.73.

"The fact that they qualified is pretty great," said Graybill. "Lizzie Periot had her second best time in the 500 free. It's difficult for a freshman to go into the state meet and drop a significant amount of time. Our District Three championship meet is a very competitive one."

In the diving competition, sophomore Nico Billoni finished 23rd, missing the chance to move on to semis. In his five dives, Billoni finished with 146.10 points.

"The fact that he made it is amazing, because he just started diving this year," said Graybill. "He is the first boy from the Lancaster-Lebanon League in seven years to make it to states in diving."

Shannon O'Hara made it into the semis but came up less than one point shy of making it to the finals.

The Township senior scored 160.30 in the prelims and finished 18th. In the semis, the top 16 made the cut. O'Hara racked up 256.05 points while Lower Merion's Amani Brown Swint finished 16th with 256.95 points - less than a point better than O'Hara.

BOWLING

The Township bowling team competed in the state championships on Friday and Saturday at Ephrata's Dutch Lanes. The boys' team finished eighth in the qualifying rounds with 3678 overall total.

The Streaks' face Ambridge and topped the Bridgers 3678 to 3654, but weren't able to qualify for the finals.

Drew Jaquith led the Blue Streaks with 572 points, scoring 195 in his first game and posting a score of 206 in his third game of the day.

Jordan Schell and Riahhon Kott finished second and third with respective scores of 547 and 542. Schell's top game was a 234. Kott was consistent with scores of 176, 185 and 181.

Finishing close to 500 was Matt Iseman. His aggregate score of 485 included a top game of 179.

In the Baker sets, the Streaks bested the Bridgers 569-533 while the Bridgers won the second Baker set 548-498.

Ryan Adams led Ambridge with a score of 607.

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Swimmers, Bowlers Cap Seasons in States March 18, 2019

The 2018-2019 swimming season officially hit the books with the conclusion of the PIAA championships which were held this past weekend at Bucknell University. Warwick was represented in four events, split evenly between Friday and Saturday.

Oliver Lance stood as the lone Warrior to advance out of the qualifying rounds when he placed 12th in Saturday's preliminary heat of the 100 backstroke. Lance's finish in 51.27, which came in just under a second of his 51.44 seeding time, earned him a spot in the consolation finals later that same day.

Once there, Lance dropped slightly off his pace with a finish in 51.68 which landed him 14th overall. That followed his appearance in Friday's 200 IM prelims where the senior swam to an 18th place finish with a time of 1:54.78, just barely missing the 16th and final qualifying position which Paul Brosky of Lasalle College clinched with his time of 1:54.35.

On the girl's side, the 200-freestyle relay team of Catherine Chen, Morgan Stuhltrager, Maya Hartzler, and Hannah Greenway also came within a fingertip of making the consolations. Their time of 1:38.33 came just behind the Upper St-Clair team of Taylor Connors, Lauren Connors, Elinor Connor, and Abby Rutkowski which advanced with a finish of 1:38.21. Chen also took part in Saturday's 100 freestyle event where she finished 28th with a time of 53.65 which shaved a little over a second off her seeding time of 52.73.

BOWLING

The weekend also saw an end to the bowling season as 48 bowlers from around the state converged on Dutch Lanes for the Pennsylvania High School State Championships. One Warwick bowler made it out of Friday's qualifying round as Tony Lutz landed the fifth seed, but fell in the first round 268-192 to Pennsbury's Jake Feher.

His six-game total of 1254, which included scores of 233, 212, 189, 211, 237, and 172, gave him a 17-point advantage over Middletown's Cody Brunner whose six-game total of 1237 fell just below the cut. In the finals, Lutz failed to find his traction against Feher who was eliminated in the quarterfinals by eventual champion Kolby Bennet of Cedar Crest.

Isaac Erickson rolled a 224, 184, 119, 199, 171, and 191 for a 1088 series which placed him below the cut in qualifying at 22nd. Ashley Sham also represented the Warriors, but her qualifying series of 1186 which included games of 194, 163, 174, 189, 278, and 188 landed her in eighth place, three places away from advancing.

In the team competition which was held on Saturday, Warwick pulled together to roll the tournament high total of 4182 in the qualifying round of three games along with two Baker sets, earning the top seed in the finals. L-L rival Cedar Crest finished slightly behind the Warriors with a 4177 pinfall to lock up the second seed and eventually came back to beat Warwick 2-0 in the championship match after defeating third seed Norwin in the semifinals 2-0.

Facing a stacked Cedar Crest squad that included both boy's and girl's individual champions in Kolby Bennett and Paige Boyd, the Warriors put up a good fight but could not fend off the Falcons who racked up a 204-192 win in the first game of the best-of-three series and followed with a 196-169 victory in the second to wrap things up.

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ET Hoop Teams Fall in State Playoffs March 15, 2019

With the calendar flipping through the days of March, any basketball fan will hear the phrase march madness used often. Typically, the reference is to the NCAA Men's and Women's Championship but this year it also applies to both the girl's and boys' teams at Elizabethtown and their participation in their respective PIAA-5A tournaments.

On the boy's side that meant a first-round match-up with the champion from District 6, Greater Johnstown on Friday March 8th at Central Cambria High School. The Bears landed the first blow with a 21-10 blitz through the opening frame but the Trojans answered back. That answer came in the form of a 15-4 second quarter run that erased E-town's 11-point lead and sent the teams into the break knotted at 25-25.

Johnstown maintained momentum through the third quarter, posting a 13-8 edge in the frame to put Elizabethtown in a five-point hole with only eight minutes remaining in the game. Larry Locker and Elijah Eberly combined to score nine of the Bear's 13 fourth quarter points while a defensive clampdown held the Trojans to just eight points. That five-point swing forced overtime with a deadlocked, 46-46, game. E-town's offense stalled out in the extra session, netting just six points allowing Johnstown to steal the game with a 10-point run through OT.

Locker led all scorers with 16 points, finishing with a boy's record 1268 for his career. Luke Pierson added 13 points and Eberly 11 points to give E-town a trio of double-digit scorers. Amos Kollie (six points), Ryan Parise (four points) and Dylan Sweger (two points) accounted for the remaining 12 points.

For the Lady Bears, their March madness resulted in a 66-23 loss to District 1 champion, Villa Maria Academy, on Saturday March 9th at Spring Ford High School. The Lady Hurricanes landed what proved to be the knockout blow with a 25-6 run through the opening quarter. E-town never recovered, leading to a halftime deficit of 32 points as Villa Maria continued their charge in the second quarter to the tune of 17-4.

The second half saw Elizabethtown keep things closer but Villa Maria was still able to post a 24-13 edge for the 66-23 final.

Marena Lonardi collected the final 17 points of her career, putting her tally at 1359, or seven more than 1993 grad Jen Williams. That moved Lonardi into first place on the school's all-time list. Sydney Pierson (four points) and Jade Love-Morris (two points) were the only other Lady Bears to score.

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PV's Miller Takes PIAA Silver March 15, 2019

Pequea Valley's Gabe Miller brought home the silver medal from the PIAA Class-AA wrestling championships, which were held at Hershey's Giant Center, Thursday through Saturday, March 7-9.

In the championship match of the 145-pound weight class, Miller lost to Andrew Cerniglia of Notre Dame Green Pond by a 14-0 count

Miller opened the tournament with a convincing 9-3 defeat of Jake Pall from Freedom Area.

His next opponent was Kameron Kline of Midd-West, whom he pinned 3:27 into the quarterfinal match.

Miller kept on pouring on the points against Nicholas Rosengrant of Saucon Valley. He blanked the SV senior 8-0 to earn a shot at the title.

Joey Coblentz, who wrestled at 220, also opened with a victory, registering a 6-2 win against T.J Meehan of Lake-Lehman.

Derry Area's Dominic DeLuca, who was the Southwest Regional champ and eventual second-place finisher at states, pinned Coblentz, sending the PV senior into the consolation brackets.

In his wrestleback attempt, Coblentz lost to Kolby Frank of Wilson Area. He finished the season with a 37-12 record.

Sophomore Jace Beegle, who had finished fourth in the District Three 2A Southeast Regionals, lost a close 6-5 decision in the preliminary round to Nate Yagle of McGuffey.

In the consolations, David Kreider of Central Catholic won another close one over Beegle, beating the PV sophomore 3-0.

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S5538 March 15, 2019

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Solanco Wrestlers Receive L-L Honors March 14, 2019

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Flatt Receives Character Award March 14, 2019

Solanco's Dominic Flatt won his first Lancaster-Lebanon League title this past January as an undersized 106 pounder, weighing in at 99.5 pounds. At the League tournament, he began a friendship with two brothers, Jaxon and Cooper Brubaker, who have Saul-Wilson Syndrome, a rare genetic disorder, characterized by small stature. The brothers are two of just13 in the world with this condition.

"Upon receiving his first-place medal at the tournament, Dominic gave his medal to Jaxon Brubaker realizing Jaxon would never get the chance to wrestle," recounted Solanco head coach Tony Mendez.

Many individuals in the wrestling community became aware of this story, including Clair Beiler, owner of Lancaster Awards & Apparel, who supplies the league wrestling tournament with all the awards.

"Mr. Beiler wanted to donate a new championship medal to Dominic for his incredible act of kindness," continued Mendez. "He was presented with this award, the 'Extemporaneous Character Award' at the Lancaster-Lebanon League All-Star banquet on Monday (3/11). As I suspected, Dominic placed the medal around Cooper Brubaker's neck so he had a medal to match his brothers. Once again, showing his incredible character as a wrestler and person."

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Pioneers End Season With PIAA Loss to Pottsville March 11, 2019

Lampeter-Strasburg looked more than ready for a challenge in the opening round of the PIAA Class 5A Tournament at Blue Mountain High School this past Friday night. The Pioneers, with a triple by Chase Broderick and two straight threes by Seth Beers exploded for a 12-2 lead over District 11 champ Pottsville just six minutes into the game. L-S, with nine points from Beers, led 14-3 with 33.8 left in the first quarter. The Crimson Tide (24-3), however, recovered quickly, using a 17-8 second quarter run to fuel the momentum needed to pick up a hard-fought 56-51 victory.

Trevor Sherakas sparked that second quarter run, knocking down three triples, including a buzzer beater that put the Tide in front, 23-22 at the half. He finished with a game-high 25 points, including seven three-pointers, after not scoring a single field goal in the first frame.

"They're ranked No. 4 in the state," said Pioneer boss Ed Berryman. "And they were a bit quicker than us. But the guys played hard, really hard. We just had a few too many turnovers.

"And Sherakas killed us," he added. "I watched three of their games on film and he didn't make close to seven three pointers."

The teams played pretty even in the third quarter. Nevin Book worked inside for five points and Beers drained a pair of threes but it was Pottsville, with three more trifectas from Sherakas, that won the quarter 15-12 and held a 38-34 lead.

But it was Pottsville's 8-2, fourth quarter opening run that seemed to provide an added spark. Down 46-36 with 6:12 remaining, Zack Kingsley dropped in a three and Adam Stoltzfus scored on an out of bounds play, cutting the lead to five with just over five minutes remaining. The Pioneers, however, missed three straight free throws, including the front end of a one-and-one. With 2:56 left, L-S faced a 49-41 deficit but couldn't seem to catch a spark.

Pottsville hit 7-of-13 free throws down the stretch and L-S, with another three from Kingsley and a bucket by Stoltzfus, held a 5-2 run over the final 30 seconds but it wasn't enough.

"I told them to remember that last year we were down 10 to Archbishop Carroll and scored 11 straight to force overtime," noted Berryman. "We responded, but Pottsville's a good team. They're a good defensive team and that wears you down, mentally," he added. "That contributed. Plus we lost a few guys on defense late in the game and they got easy buckets."

Beers, with 18 points, was the only double-digit scorer for the Pioneers. Book followed with nine, Kingsley added six, Broderick and Stoltzfus combined for 11 and Patrick Holmes settled for seven.

The Pioneers warmed up wearing crimson red t-shirts that read 'in honor of JT - Big Springs.'

"We played Big Springs two Mondays ago and one week after that, one of their players passed away," Berryman explained. "It kind of hit the kids hard and they wanted to do something.

"It was a great season and a great experience having those district home games," said Berryman. "Not too many teams finish the season with a win. The guys gave 100% and, as a coach, I couldn't ask for more."

Post-season awards this year included Beers as a unanimous first-team Section Three all-star selection. Holmes, Broderick, Stoltzfus and Kingsley all received second team all-star recognition.

"They are all deserving of this recognition," Berryman said. "Especially Adam who, with a hole in in patella tendon, played in pain all year.

"None of these guys were all-stars last year," he added. "They all worked so hard."

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Solanco Falls in PIAA Opener to Mt. St. Joseph March 11, 2019

In the first round of the PIAA 5A girls basketball tournament this past Saturday night at Upper Dublin High School, Solanco found itself in a back-and-forth matchup against the No. 2 seed out of District One, Mount St. Joseph. The Magic, however, used a 17-10 run through the fourth quarter to turn a three point lead into a 10-point victory, 49-39.

The Mares, who shot just 25 percent from two point range and only three percent from behind the arc, struggled to find their shooting rhythm most of the night but kept fighting from behind. Tied at 3-3 early, the Magic used a 7-0 run late in the first quarter for a 10-5 lead.

"It was an absolute surprise to me that we struggled shooting the ball the whole game," said head coach Chad McDowell. "We had a great week of practice where we shot the ball well, even in our scrimmage earlier in the week against Elizabethtown we were making shots. That 25 percent could be a season low," he added. "They made shots and we didn't. That was the difference in the game."

Solanco took its first lead of the night when Aleksa Burger made one-of-two free throws with 5:24 left in the half for a 13-12 edge. Prior to that free throw, Grace Kreider scored twice, Burger, who led the team with 13 rebounds, including 11 at the offensive end, scored on a put back and Jenna Dombach's free throw tied the game at 12 all.

"Aleksa had a terrific game on the boards," lauded McDowell. "She has been a mainstay on the boards all four years she has played, hauling in a 709 career total."

The Magic responded with five straight points before a Kreider steal turned layup and another put back by Burger put Solanco in front again, 19-17 with 1:56 left in the half. Mt. St. Joseph's Grace Niekelski, who controlled the paint and finished with 14 points, tied the game for the fourth time with a bucket in the post and Lauren Vesey, who led all scorers with 16 points, ended the half with five straight, putting the Magic in front 24-19.

"They had decent size and utilized it well, especially at the offensive end," McDowell stated. "One of our Achilles' heels all season has come against teams that had any kind of size. We have had some difficult matchups at times throughout the season."

Solanco used a 6-2 run to start the third quarter, and cut the lead to 26-23 on a put back by Jess Cabrera. They ended the frame with another 6-2 run. Jade Eshleman hit a jumper on the wing, Paige Phillips scored on a baseline move and Dombach's layup left it at 32-29 after three complete quarters.

But the Mares could get no closer. The Magic scored eight straight points and Solanco's offense went stagnant for just over a three minute span that saw Burger score on yet another offensive rebound at 6:30 and Kreider drop in a three ball with 2:42 left, cutting the lead to 42-34.

"The turning point, in my opinion, came early in the game when we were unable to create turnovers (zero in the first quarter and three in the second)," McDowell pointed out. "One thing that has exemplified our team all season long was our ability to cause other teams to make mistakes, to play faster and then for us to capitalize on those mistakes. MSJ did not make mistakes and did not turn the ball over, which did not allow us to get into any defensive rhythm.

"Then, in the fourth quarter, we were settling for threes," he continued. "We needed to continue to attack the basket and look for kick out shots, but we forced some shots instead. And then we had that scoring lull during a crucial stretch."

Fouls and free throws played a role in the final minutes as the Magic converted 8-of-11 at the stripe to maintain their lead and extend their season.

Burger, with 12 points, finished as the Mares only double-digit scorer. Kreider added nine points and picked up all four of Solanco's steals. Dombach added eight points and five rebounds while Eshleman and Cabrera combined for eight points and seven rebounds.

The Mares, who finished fourth in District Three, ended the season at 20-8 overall.

Post-season awards included Burger, Kreider and Cabrera being named as Section Three first team all-stars. Eshleman was a second team selection, Dombach received honorable mention recognition and Cabrera was named Section Three MVP. Kara McClune was the Section Three Unsung Hero and coach McDowell was voted as Section Three Coach of the Year.

"It was a fantastic season," McDowell exclaimed. "This group of young ladies have accomplished so much both on and off the court. They were Section Champions, developed lasting friendships, and experienced life lessons. They have brought a lot to our Solanco Community and I am very proud of every one of them. I wish the graduating senior the best in their future endeavors," he added. "They will always be a big part of a legacy in our Solanco girls' basketball family.

"For the underclassmen...the off-season starts now!"

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Fegley Represents Middletown in PIAA's March 11, 2019

The "Road to Hershey" from Middletown Area High School to The Giant Center is roughly nine miles but any Blue Raider wrestler looking to make that short trek must first take a longer, needed detour. Luke Fegley, fresh off his 113-pound silver medal win at the District 3-2A Championship, took that needed trip to Wilson High School for the PIAA-2A SE Regional on Friday March 1st and Saturday March 2nd. The result was another podium finish, this one earning the junior grappler a bronze medal and a coveted berth in the PIAA-2A Championships that kick off on Thursday March 7th.

By far Fegley's easiest match of the weekend came in his opening round clash opposite Williams Valley's Mikey Myers. The Viking junior was unable to go, giving Fegley the easy forfeit victory. Things were understandable more difficult in the quarterfinals, with Fegley winning on the mat. The 4-1 decision over Biglerville's Ethan Slaybaugh dropped Fegley into the semifinals where Central Catholic's David Kreidler was waiting. Fegley suffered his only loss of the regional to the eventual second place finisher, falling by a 4-2 final.

It took Fegley 126-seconds to rebound from that loss with Camp Hill's Christian Doi absorbing the frustration in a pinfall loss. The win sent Fegley to his final match of the weekend where Jace Beegle of Pequea Valley was waiting in the consolation championship. Fegley was able to outlast the Indian sophomore via a 1-0 final to earn the PIAA berth and SE Regional bronze medal.

With that third-place finish in the regional tournament, Fegley was finally able to make that coveted trip to the Giant Center for the PIAA-2A Championships. His final weekend of wrestling for the 2018-2019 season kicked off on Thursday March 8th with a first round clash opposite Mifflinburg's Gabe Gramly. Fegley's time in Hershey ended up being not-so-sweet, starting with a first period stalling call that set Fegley on a path to a loss. Gramly added a first period takedown for a 3-0 lead heading into the second period. Fegley was able to make up some ground with a 2-1 scoring edge but that 4-2 mark ended as an 8-5 loss after Gramly's four-point outburst in the third.

Fegley rebounded in a major way on Friday morning with a 10-2 victory over Line Mountain's Mason Leshock. The junior collected points in all three periods with a pair of nearfalls accounting for the bulk of his scoring. His third period nearfall came with nine seconds remaining in the bout and led into a Leshock reversal that netted the Eagle freshman his only points.

The season came to a close a short while later with a 4-2 loss to Cole Bayless of Reynolds in the third round of consolation matches. Fegley's second and third period escapes left him short thanks to Bayless' third period push. The fellow junior got to Fegley for a two-point reversal that flipped Fegley's 1-0 lead to a 2-1 deficit before adding a two-point takedown that broke up the 2-2 deadlock. Fegley was unable to come back from that takedown, leaving him with a 40-6 mark for the season.

Two other Blue Raiders joined Fegley in Reading but neither Ryan Berstler nor Joseph Spear will be made the journey to Hershey. Berstler's SE Regional falls under the near miss category with a consolation quarterfinal loss ending the senior's season one round shy of a PIAA berth. Berstler's season is over while Octorara's Seth Hoopes secured the PIAA berth with his 6-4 win. Berstler did enjoy two wins in his three other matches at Wilson HS starting with an 8-3 victory over Isaiah Vizcarrondo of Faith Christian. Berstler's 37th win of the season came in his second-round consolation bout with Conwell Egan's Greg Stevens. Berstler dominated his fellow senior to the tune of a 17-1 tech fall victory that lasted just five-seconds into the third period. In between those two wins was the match that knocked Berstler out of title contention, a 10-1 loss to the eventual bronze medal winner at 126-pound, Brandan Chletsos of Notre-Dame Green-Pond.

Spear, Middletown's final member of the SE regional contingent found the going much more difficult than his two teammates. So much so that the junior bowed out of the competition after an 0-2 start, leaving him with a 32-8 mark for the season. Spear dropped his first-round bout in the 138-pound fracas by a 10-7 count, falling to Notre-Dame Green-Pond's Nick Vonelli. A 13-2 consolation loss to Hamburg's Shane Strausser ended Spear's shot at Hershey.

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Township Drops PIAA Opener to Mt. Lebanon March 11, 2019

The Manheim Township boys' basketball team traveled to Peters Township to tip off the PIAA 6A state playoffs on Saturday evening. Their opponent at this neutral site was Mount Lebanon's squad, which was coming off a District Seven championship and bringing a 22-3 record into states.

The Blue Devils jumped out to a quick start, outscoring Township 20-12 in the opening period. They extended that lead to 34-24 by halftime and managed to hang on, despite a strong third-quarter effort by the Blue Streaks, whose season came to an end following the 67-57 loss.

Dating back to a non-league regular season game at Governor Mifflin on Groundhog Day, it was the Blue Streaks' eighth game on the road out of the last 10, including Lancaster-Lebanon League and District Three 6A playoffs.

Hayden Mitchell of Mt. Lebanon led all scorers with 19 points. Teammate Blaine Gartley, with a pair of threes, finished with 18.

Zach Oldac collected a team-high 15 points for Township. He and Will Greiner (six points on two treys) made the only three-pointers for the Streaks. Tyler Vicidomini poured in 12 points while the Blue Devils held the Streaks' leading scorer Tyler Crespo to eight points. Mickey Stokes also scored eight.

The Blue Devils move on to the round of 16 where their next game will feature a battle between the District Seven champ and District Eight champion Taylor Allderdice. The Dragons (22-5) topped Canon-McMillan in overtime on Saturday in a game actually played at Mt. Lebanon.

In closing out a season that saw the Blue Streaks claim the L-L League championship, there were five players putting on a Township basketball uniform for the last time on Saturday, including Crespo and Greiner. Another of the team's top scoring threats Brendan Mellott is one more senior who'll bid farewell to the Streaks as will Braydon Alaimo and a key role player Colin Yablonski.

The Streaks look forward to the return of Vicidomini, Oldac, Stokes, Jon Engel and many more for the 2019-20 campaign.

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Betancourt Earns PIAA 5th Place Medal March 11, 2019

Sometimes, Manheim Central coach Billy Chamberlain said, wrestlers complete not with the hunger to win, but with the fear of losing.

When the latter creeps in their minds, even for a moment, it can mean disaster for a grappler competing at the highest level.

This was the case for two Manheim wrestlers March 7-9 in the Class 3A state wrestling championship at Hershey's Giant Center.

Senior Cade Zeamer and junior Will Betancourt each allowed the moment to overwhelm them, Chamberlain said. The difference, though, Betancourt, recovered and fought through the consolation bracket to earn a fifth place finish at 120 pounds.

Zeamer suffered an 8-1 loss in the preliminary round to Travis Brown of Liberty at 132 pounds and lost in the consolation match 20-8 to Red Land's Bryce Brennan.

"Cade came out tight and a little nervous," Chamberlain said. "It was his first time at states and he's a senior. That second match he wrestled against the district runner up."

Zeamer has a special place in Chamberlain's heart. Zeamer is the first wrestler he's coached for four straight years at Manheim Central.

"He's come a long way," Chamberlain said. "To see how he's grown on and off the mat is impressive. He's become tougher on and off the mat. He knows what he needs to do and what it takes to accomplish it."

This was Betancourt's third straight year in the state championships and second consecutive year earning a medal, capturing 7th place last year.

Betancourt, who finished the season with a 40-5 record, earned fifth place by defeating Stroudsburg's Cameron Enriquez 2-1 in an ultimate tie-breaker.

The two were tied 1-1 after three periods. Betancourt chose the top and rode out for 30 seconds to gain a point for the match.

"Will ended the year with his best match of the season," Chamberlain said. "Both guys wrestled scrappy. Neither backed down. It was good wrestling. I couldn't be more pleased with the way his season ended."

Chamberlain said he thought Betancourt was a little tight at the beginning of the tournament, not being as aggressive with his offense. But he was doing enough to win. He notched a 4-2 triumph in his opener against Eamonn Logue of Father Judge. Logue, who had a five-inch height advantage, forced Betancourt to wrestle smart, staying small in close, neutral situations.

Betancourt scored a takedown with 27 seconds remaining in the first period and added two escapes for his final points, but he and his coach knew he'd have to wrestle better.

In the quarterfinals, Betancourt suffered a 4-1 loss to Luke Lucerne of Council Rock North.

Betancourt led 1-0 late in the third period when Lucerne secured a reverse and bonus points to gain the win. Chamberlain said the quarterfinal loss woke Betancourt up. Instead of sulking, the talented junior came out more aggressive.

He beat William Tennent's TJ England 3-1 in the third round consolations.

"Will's such a competitor, but sometimes a negative thought creeps in, 'I want to win, but I don't want to lose.' It creeps in and it is not a mindset you want.

"When he focuses on not wanting to lose he focuses too much on his top game and relies on a few things in his arsenal. But when he wants to win he throws everything at you."

Chamberlain said Betancourt threw everything at his opponent in the fifth place match, and that has his coach looking forward to next season already.

"I am extremely excited with what I saw in that fifth place match," he said. "We can work with it."

Interesting enough, all of Betancourt's five losses this year came against Pennsylvania state medalists. All five losses were to opponents who placed in the top five in the state.

Betancourt has had a steady rise through the state tourney. Besides winning districts three times, he made states as a freshman, placed seventh as a sophomore and now fifth as a junior.

"He's getting bigger and bigger wins every year," Chamberlain said about Betancourt. "He's a competitor and he can compete with anybody."

Chamberlain said states capped a great year for his squad, which will graduate a lot of wrestlers, but will bring back quality wrestlers and will benefit from a great middle school program.

But the cherry on the top is having Betancourt in the wrestling room to set the tone and show all the younger wrestlers how to conduct themselves.

BOWLING

Brandon Henry made the Lancaster-Lebanon League Section Three All-Star Team. The junior had a 194.75 average. He also had the high series in Section Three with a 736.

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Comet Swimmers Grab Two District Medals March 8, 2019

After failing to qualify a single swimmer to the District Three Championships last year, the Comets made up for lost time. On March 1-2 at Cumberland Valley High School, nine Comet swimmers competed in the 3A championships where they grabbed two medals, set a school record and earned a couple of personal bests along the way.

Freshman Avery Groff led the medal-winners, claiming seventh place on Friday with a 5:16 in the 500 freestyle. Senior Anna Sugra earned Manor's second medal with her eighth place finish and personal best 1:56.79 in the 200 free on Saturday. Groff finished 17th in the same event with a 1:59.79.

Also on Saturday, the 200 medley relay team of Jalyn Clow, Sugra, Groff and Erica Shaub posted an 11th place finish with a new school record time of 1:53.66.

Rounding out Saturday's action was Erica Shaub with a 2:17.78 in the 200 IM good for 18th place as the Comets finished in 13th place as a team overall.

Shaub also competed on Friday where she settled for 25th place in the 100 backstroke with a 1:02.75. Sugra also hit the water on Friday, securing a 10th place finish in the 100 breaststroke with a 1:07.91.

Top place winner for the boys' team was Jared Stephan who's personal best 1:59.06 gave him a 10th place finish in the 200 IM on Saturday. He opened the meet with a 12th place finish on Friday, dropping his 500 free time by over five seconds for a 4:49.73.

The 200 medley relay team of Wes Kendig, Stephan, Andrew Pursel and Pan Kunyu turned in an 11th place finish with a 1:40.67 while the same group competing in the 400 free relay secured 14th place with a 3:20.49.

Pursel, Kendig and Kunyu all placed in two individual events. Pursel turned in a personal best 22.33 for 17th place in the 50 free with Kendig taking 21st in 22.75. Pursel was also 25th in the 100 free, recording yet another PR (49.73). Kendig settled for 20th place in the 100 butterfly (55.02) while Barry Everett matched that placing in the 100 breaststroke (3:20.49).

Kunyu scored a pair of 29th place finishes, clocking a 50.24 in the 100 free and a 57.53 in the 100 back.

"Overall, this season was incredible," said second year head coach Eric Urban. "I learned a lot about the team last year and we returned a lot of talent. Both teams had winning records (boys 6-2, girls 5-3) and both teams finished third at the LL League Championships.

"Our senior class were positive role models and very spirited, which pushed our underclassmen at meets," he continued. "Even though the numbers were down, especially on the boys' team, we had talent on both teams that I was able to place in all events. We really didn't have a weak link in any of the events which allowed for our success this season.

"We set two new team records, girls 200 medley and 400 free relay (Sugra, Shaub, Clow and Groff)," Urban pointed out. "Anna placed first in the 200 free at the League Meet. We had nine swimmers qualify for districts, including four relays, as compared to none last year."

BOWLING

The Comet bowlers competed in the Eastern PA Regional Championships Friday, March 1 and Saturday, March 2 at Leisure Lanes and Dutch Lanes where their seasons came to a close.

"We were hoping we could sneak someone through to states," said head coach Chris Vital. "But we struggled. We kind of struggled all year."

The singles championships took place on Friday with Gavin Davidson emerging as Manor's top finisher. "Gavin finished 24th," noted Vital. "He was on the bubble going into the last game. An 1135 series was the 12th and last series to advance. Gavin rolled a 1093."

Davidson rolled 200 or better in each of his first five games, including a 255 in the fourth game but was 42 pins shy of extending his season.

Also qualifying for the boys in singles play was Mark Smith, Derek Warfel, Jimmy Mahler and Evan Wright. Smith, a senior, was Manor's most consistent bowler this year. His highest game of the series was a 245 in the opening round. Smith finished 37th with a 1059 series.

Warfel's 978 was the third highest Comet total. The freshman rolled a 236 in his opening game. He was followed by Mahler, who settled for 158th while Wright, a sophomore, was 178th.

A total of 191 bowlers competed with the top 12 advancing to the stepladder finals.

In girls' action, Delaney Reitnauer rolled three games over 200 and recorded a 989 five game total that left her in 19th place out of 145.

"Delaney is just a sophomore," noted Vital. "I was impressed with her finish. She worked very hard to get there."

Katelyn Welsh rolled a 924 series and finished in 34th place and Willow Hee, with a 736, settled for 118th.

On Saturday the teams competed in the team portion of the tournament. Penn Manor's boys' squad, with a 3929, earned a 13th place finish out of 39 teams while the girls were 16th, with a 3108, in a field of 31.

"The top six teams advanced and Township earned that sixth spot with a 4165," Vital stated. "Ethan Keohana and Derek Warfel, both freshmen, did a nice job."

Also competing for the boys were Mahler, Welsh, Smith Davidson, and Graylin Hyson. Smith, with a three game 613 series and Welsh, with a 570, both rolled two games over 200.

Reitnauer's 506 was tops for the girls' side. Lisa Strausner followed with a 486 with Lisa Shroyer adding a 417. Also competing was Willow Hee and Ariana Cuba.

BASKETBALL

Officially wrapping up the basketball seasons was the announcement of the all-star teams. Freshman Morgan Miller is Manor's only first team selection. Ella Hart, Kate Levato, Kevin Roldan and Ty Erisman are all second team all-stars while Ethan Hine was voted as an honorable mention all-star.

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Miller Wrestles to District Fourth Place March 8, 2019

Pequea Valley's wrestling team was represented by four tough competitors at the Southeast Regionals of the PIAA Class 2A wrestling championships. The regionals took place at Wilson High School on Friday and Saturday, March 1-2.

Gabe Miller, a senior with a regional championship already among his career achievements, wrestled his way past some formidable foes as he went on to win the title at the 145-pound weight class. Meanwhile, Jace Beegle finished fourth at 113, also earning a trip with Miller to the PIAA 2A state tournament at the Giant Center.

In addition, Dylan Jackson and Joey Coblentz wrestled at Wilson, with the latter making it to the quarterfinals of the 220-pound class.

Miller pinned Andrew Cerniglia of Notre Dame Green Pond late in the third period of the title match. Cerniglia held a lead for much of the match until Miller pulled even and finally registered the pin at the 5:39 mark of the match.

In the quarterfinals on Friday, Miller held on for a 9-4 victory over Jordan Rosengrant of Saucon Valley and started his wrestling on Saturday with a narrow 5-4 decision against Nathan Haubert of Palisades in the semis.

Significant in the championship for Miller, who had earned last years' title at 132, was that he toppled the top three wrestlers from District Eleven.

Beegle won a pair of matches on Friday at 113. He had a technical fall in the first round and a third-period pin in the quarterfinals, where he downed Christian Doi of Camp Hill at the 5:30 mark.

Beegle advanced to the semis with Miller. In Saturday's semifinal, Adam Jacob of East Pennsboro managed to eke out a 4-0 victory, forcing Beegle into the consis where he faced a familiar foe. Beegle pinned Matthew Inman of Annville-Cleona early in the match, needing only 1:15 to notch the fall.

That victory advanced Beegle to the third-place match where Luke Fegley of Middletown came up with a narrow escape, topping the Pequea sophomore 1-0.

At 220, Beegle came up short against Tyrone Fowler of Bishop McDevitt in the fifth-place match on Saturday.

His quest in the regionals began with an 11-1 major decision on Friday, downing Patrick Whittle of Lower Moreland. Suffering a pin in the quarterfinals to Jim Thorpe's Ethan Mordaunt caused him to wrestle back in the consolations with a vengeance, notching a pin against Susquenita's Slade Figard 4:15 into that bout.

He also had a 3-1 decision in overtime, defeating Donny Gelnett of Upper Dauphin. But a tough 9-4 loss to Ethan Rode of Newport in the next round sent him to the fifth-place match.

Ryan Vulakh of Pope John Paul II earned a second-period pin over Jackson at 152. Jackson had to forfeit at the consolations.

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Donegal Swimmers Claim 11 District Medals March 8, 2019

Strength does not always lie in numbers and the small group of Donegal swimmers definitely prove that point. While Donegal does not officially have a swim team, a handful of athletes do compete as non-swim school participants and are able to qualify for the post-season and boy have they made a splash this year.

A mix of nine boys and girls make up the group of Indians that took to the pool in the District Three 2A meet that was held at Cumberland Valley High School from March 2 through March 3. Of those nine, 11 medals were won and five swimmers qualified for the PIAA meet which will be held this weekend at Bucknell University.

"The District (meet) is a very intense swim meet, the swimmers either perform well or not," stated head coach Alison Kreider. "I had a few swimmers that worked so hard all season long and I wanted them to do better than they did and that hurts. They have next year to do it. It's a learning experience for them all on how to deal with the ups and downs of swimming."

Add Jake Houck to the list of those that most definitely performed as he collected two gold medals over the two days of competition and earned an automatic ticket to states in the 100 butterfly as well as the 100 freestyle with the latter proving to be a split-second win for the junior. In that race he was challenged by Bishop McDevitt's Josiah Lauver who, with a time of 46.50, was only a hair away from Houck's first place finish in 46.47, while Indian teammate Aeden Wilkinson (50.76) finished 11th to complement his ninth-place finish of 2:07.20 in the 200 IM.

That was Houck's second gold medal of the weekend and preceded his victory in the 100 butterfly where he outswam the field with a time of 51.00. In that same race, Grant Leibfried clocked a time of 56.31 to finish behind his teammate in sixth place and then proceeded to earn another sixth-place medal the following day in the 100 breaststroke with a time of 1:03.99, only a half-second ahead of Logan Fry (1:03.49) who placed 10th. Fry also finished 13th in the 200 freestyle in 1:54.89.

Ethan Shonk joined Houck as the only other boy to qualify for the PIAA meet and did so in the lone event he was entered. His time of 55.47 in the 100 backstroke placed Shonk third and earned him a trip to the big stage in the process.

A total of three girls qualified for the PIAA meet in two events each and in doing so, two Donegal school records fell by the wayside. Sisters Jordynn and Jenna Park swam well enough to make the cut as did Claire O'Neill whose second-place time of 2:10.40 in the 200 IM, a new school record, and fourth place finish of 5:18.48 in the 50 freestyle punched her ticket.

Jordynn also found herself in a battle to the finish in the 100 butterfly but the sophomore prevailed with a top time of 57.22, just barely ahead of Harrisburg Academy's Zoe Gallagher (57.72) and Gettysburg's Morgan Newell (57.75) before putting her name in the record book with a second-place finish of 1:04.41 in the 100 breaststroke. In that same race, Hailey Fry (1:10.49) finished 10th, adding to her 16th place time of 2:02.26 in the 200 freestyle.

Older sister Jenna used two third place finishes to advance to states beginning with Friday's 50 freestyle in which she tied Skyler Strunk of Brandywine Heights with both girls clocking in at 23.94. In her second event of the weekend, the senior found herself challenged as well by Gallagher (53.45), but snagged the bronze by less than a second when she touched in 53.34.

"I am excited to see what my swimmers will do at States," said Kreider. "Jenna is going for her last time and I want her to do well and finish her high school swimming career on a high note. She will continue her college swimming career at Bloomsburg and I look forward to see what she can do there next season."

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Azzalina Finishes 9th in District Swimming March 8, 2019

The saying goes that all good things come to an end and for the Elizabethtown swimming team that end was the District 3-3A Championship meet on March 1st and 2nd. The Bears sent three swimmers to Cumberland Valley High School for the championship meet with Ben Azzalina the lone member of the boy's team while Lexi Fink and Gabby Walsh represented the Lady Bears.

Azzalina and Fink participated in two events with Azzalina collecting the top E-town finish. The sophomore trimmed 0.86 seconds from his seeded 100 backstroke time by clocking a 54.89 that landed him just off the podium in ninth place. Azzalina was not able to replicate that feat in his other event, the 50 freestyle. His season best 21.95 had him seeded ninth when the proceedings kicked off but a 22.08 at the district meet saw him slide to 11th in the final standings.

Fink's double included work in the 200 IM as well as the 100 breaststroke where she finished 18th. Her time of 1:10.19 in the 100 breaststroke was a bit slower than her seeding time but she was able to move up one spot to 18th regardless. Fink improved both her time and her finish in the 200 IM, turning a 31st seed into a 28th place finish thanks to a time of 2:21.04 which was 0.63 seconds faster than her seeding time.

Walsh joined the fun by partaking in the 100 backstroke where she entered the competition with the 23rd fastest time, 1:02.03. She moved up four places in the final standing by turning in a 1:01.73 in the finals.

BOWLING

The boy's bowling team also closed out their 2018-2019 season with their participation in the Eastern PA Regional Championship on March 1st and 2nd. The Bears heptad combined for a team score of 3669, slotting them 26th in the team competition. Bradly Ruth and Patrick Hoffmaster were the only two Bears to compete in all three games with Ruth taking series high honors. The senior averaged 225 over his three-game run to post a 676 series. Hoffmaster settled on a 556 series after games of 189, 188 and 179. Ben Davis (166), Zach Deardorff (128) and Andrew Telenko (159) finished out game one while Davis (149), Telenko (148) and Daniel Eberle (194) claimed the final three spots in game two. Deardorff (173) stepped back into the starting lineup for game three with Eberle (193) and Gabe Berrier (110) joining him.

Hoffmaster also took part in the boy's single tournament, rolling his way to a 55th place finish. Only the top 12 in the 75-person field advanced to the stepladder finals and the senior Bear finished out his E-town career with games of 216, 211, 192, 199 and 198. That 1016 qualifying round score falling just 119 pins short of the finals.

For the Lady Bears, the hexad of Alaina Telenko, Elizabeth Vuxta, Eryn Moore, Abby Chaffins, Katelyn Garman and Hannah Griffie posted a qualifying score of 3705 in the team competition, good enough for fifth place and a spot in the stepladder finals. Once there they swept Muhlenberg, 2-0, in the quarterfinals with wins of 158-150 and 188-141 dropping them into the semifinals opposite Governor Mifflin. E-town needed all three games to topple the Lady Mustangs, rebounding for wins of 180-175 and 208-202 after a 181-176, opening game loss. The Lady Bears stumbled in the finals, falling to Shikellamy by a 2-0 count. The Lady Braves used wins of 177-143 and 149-132 to claim their third Eastern PA Regional title in the last four years. With the loss the Lady Bears missed out on their second championship, instead adding silver to the 2017 title that broke up Shikellamy's chance at a four-peat.

Garman paced the Lady Bears in the qualifying round with her three-game tally of 713 pushing her onto the Eastern PA Regional All-Star team. Chaffins posted games of 148, 215 and 173 for a 536 series while Moore and Vuxta finished seven pins apart. Moore used games of 136, 181 and 149 for a 466 series while Vuxta put her 459 series together with games of 139, 190 and 130. Telenko occupied the final spot in two of the three games with Griffie posting a 110 in the opening game. Telenko finished out the final spot with games of 159 and 190.

Five of those six Lady Bears also took part in the singles tournament where Garman brought home the top finish. The senior worked her way to 21st place with games of 194, 164, 206, 199 and 212 for a qualifying score of 975. Chaffins followed with a 46th place tally of 897 while Moore claimed 68th place thanks to her 844. Vuxta was the final Lady Bear to crack the 800-pin plateau with games of 183, 169, 154, 158 and 157 giving her an 821, good enough for 76th place. Griffie rounded out the E-town contingent, finishing 100th with games of 176, 147, 192, 127 and 176 for a 768 series.

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Raasch, Lynam Medal in District Swimming March 7, 2019

Sophomore Karli Raasch and senior Nick Lynam made quite a splash at the PIAA District III meet on March 1st and 2nd, combining for a total of three podium finishes to represent the CV swimmers.

Raasch raced her way to two third-place finishes with a season best time of 2:07.6 in the 200 IM and a lifetime best of 57.01 in the 100 butterfly. Raasch shaved a full two seconds off of her 200 IM seed time of 2:09.87, and exceeded expectations with her podium finish in the butterfly coming into the event seeded ninth.

"Karli had a pretty nice meet," celebrated head coach Barb Raasch.

Lynam earned himself second place in the 200 free with a time of 1:42.12, just behind Muhlenberg's Roanoke Shirk, who set a new district record with his time of 1:39.06. Lynam was also in the mix during the 500 free event, finishing just short of the podium in fourth, with a time of 4:36.34.

"Nick is definitely looking towards the State meet," noted Raasch.

Both Raasch and Lynam's performances put them in contention for an appearance at States, with competition to be held at Bucknell University in mid-March. Final place seedings were not determined at press time.

Sarah Marston, a junior, completed the 200 free in under two minutes, for a season-best time of 1:59.69 to touch in 16th, and also put up a time of 54.49 in the 100 free coming in 15th.

Marston and Raasch were accompanied by Avery Heisey and Lauren Nedrow to compete in two relay events and their combined efforts earned them a 10th place finish in the 400 free (3:46.59) and 14th in the 200 free (1:44.18).

Auden Block was the sixth member of the Buckskin swim team to represent CV at the District meet and the senior finished strong with a lifetime best, 55.96, in his 100 butterfly event.

"He took almost a full second off his seed time, breaking 56 for the first time," praised Raasch. "A nice way to end his high school swimming career."

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Pioneers Finish 5th in Districts, Open States Friday March 5, 2019

Entering the District Three Class 5A championships as the No. 2 seed, Lampeter-Strasburg opened with a win over Big Spring (50-37) but were derailed in the quarterfinals, suffering a 60-49 loss to the eventual second place winner, Muhlenberg.

"Lower Dauphin beat Muhlenberg in the finals," noted head coach Ed Berrymore. "We beat Lower Dauphin in the first game of the season."

Battling back through the consolation bracket last week, L-S handled a 14-10 Northeastern squad 65-33 on Monday and then settled for fifth place overall when they avenged a L-L League playoff loss to Elizabethtown with a convincing 54-44 win on Thursday.

"Monday's result was kind of unexpected," stated Berrymore. "I wasn't expecting to win that big but I understand that three of their starters did not start due to missing school or practice.

"We mixed up our starting lineup as well," he added. "Jarred Getchis and Nevin Book are both seniors and I wanted to give them the opportunity to be announced at home."

Seth Beers dropped in 11 first quarter points, including three triples, Chase Broderick hit twice from down town and Nevin Book (6 points) scored twice in the paint as the Pioneers took a commanding 21-4 first quarter lead over Northeastern last Monday, February 25.

Beers canned three more treys and led with a game-high 24 points, all in the first three quarters. Broderick hit two more three-pointers and settled for 14 points while Zack Kingsley also finished in double figures with 11. He too hit a pair threes, adding to Lampeter's 12 for the game.

The scoring slowed in the second period with the visitors holding an 11-6 edge but Lampeter ended all doubt with a 22 point outburst in the third quarter, extending the lead to 49-33. That dominating run featured two players each connecting twice from behind the arc and Beers finishing with 10 points. Beers opened the quarter with a three ball and Kingsley matched that effort not once, but twice as the Pioneers quickly extended the lead to 36-15 with 5:50 left in the quarter.

Head coach Ed Berryman went deep into the bench in this one as all 15 players that dressed saw time on the court. Aaron Snyder came off the bench with six fourth quarter points to keep L-S in front down the stretch.

"The kids responded well after the loss to Muhlenberg," said Berryman. "It was a good win. Seth, who was 6-for-7 from three point range, and Chase shot well. And Seth and Patrick Holmes each had six assists."

Three nights later and just 15 days after suffering a 47-44 L-L League opening round loss to Elizabethtown, the Pioneers hosted the Bears in a battle for fifth place.

Beers again ignited the home team, scoring eight straight on a baseline jumper and a pair of threes. The Pioneers held a 14-8 first quarter lead.

Back-to-back threes by Getchis and Beers pushed the lead to 20-10 in the second quarter but the Bears, using a 6-0 run, closed the lead to 25-20 with 2:04 left in the half. Kingsley knocked down a three and Larry Locker, who netted 12 for the Bears, followed with a jumper that cut the lead to 28-22 at the break.

Adam Stoltzfus scored twice in the paint and Broderick added a trey to supply Lampeter's only third quarter scoring. The Bears had five different scorers and ended the frame with a 6-0 run, including a three by Brody Beach that tied the game at 35-35 with .10 on the clock.

"It was exciting for a while," Berryman said. "Then we pulled away. I think we played harder this time around."

Showing determination down the stretch, Holmes provided some senior leadership and fueled a 19-9 fourth quarter run. His traditional three point play just 25 seconds in made it 38-35. He turned a steal into a layup with 2:26 on the clock and pushed the lead to six, 47-41. Then, with about a minute remaining, he scored on an out of bounds play under the basket, making it 50-42. L-S also connected on four straight free throws in the final 37 seconds to claim the victory.

Beers, with 15 points, led a balanced attack. Getchis finished with 9 points, Kingsley netted 8, Holmes collected 7, all in that fourth quarter, and Broderick and Book combined for nine to round out the scoring.

"Jarred and Nevin played very well," said Berryman. "Nevin brings an intensity, with his toughness and grit that we don't always have."

L-S knocked down six threes and were 10-for-14 from the free throw line. The Bears hit just twice from beyond the arc and were a slim 2-for-4 from the charity stripe.

The Pioneers will open PIAA playoff action this Friday, March 8, against Pottsville at Blue Mountain High School.

SWIMMING

The Pioneer swimmers competed in the District Three championships at Cumberland Valley High School last Friday and Saturday, March 1-2 and brought home a handful of medals.

Catherine Horner was the team's top finisher, improving on her fifth seed in the 100 backstroke with a fourth place effort in a time of 58.13. She also anchored the 200 medley relay team with Bre Fluhr, Lexi Wagner and Elizabeth Horner leading off. The team was seeded 11th with a 1:55.08 and moved into eighth place with a 1:52.32.

"Most of the kids seemed to peak at the league meet but that was a best time for the relay team by about three seconds and they broke their own team record," lauded head coach Kate Rohrbaugh.

Fluhr also finished in 10th place in the 100 back while Wagner, with a season best in the 100 breaststroke, moved from 28th with a 1:12.74 to 26th with a 1:11.80.

The Pioneers, who grabbed a second eighth place medal with E. Horner's 5:18.88 in the 500 free, also finished in 10th place overall.

"I was really pleased that the girls placed so well, especially considering they switched to AAA this year and had much tougher competition," Rohrbaugh noted. "None of the girls have a guaranteed spot at states, but we're expecting that Catherine's backstroke will make it and possibly Elizabeth's 500.

"For the boys, Nathan Eberly got a best time in his 200 free (5:25.30) where he finished in 19th place," the coach added. He was the fifth sophomore to place.

Eberly also finished in 19th place in the 500 free and Justin Miller was 19th in the 100 backstroke.

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