As the slow pop-up rose into the heavy air of Beard Field at the Nittany Lion Softball Park scores of green and white clad fans collectively held their breath as they tracked the flight of what turned out to be the final out of a stellar softball season and the end of a game that epitomized the never-say-die attitude of this phenomenal group of players.
With the smack of ball into leather the crowd erupted as right fielder McKenna Berg closed her glove and secured not only the out, but the guarantee that for the second time in Donegal softball history PIAA gold would belong to the lady Indians.
It also marked the second time in the past seven months Donegal brought home a PIAA championship as the field hockey team realized the same accomplishment in November. Teammates Rachel Robinson, Grace Miller, and Rachael Overlander were all members of that historic run as well.
Amidst the cheers and a slight cloud of infield dust a pile of elated young ladies shared smiles, laughter, and tears as they reveled in a feeling that only those who have fought together as a team and faced down adversity to come out on the side of victory can fully understand.
Donegal may have come away with the final prize in Friday's 9-7 win over Cedar Cliff in the PIAA 5A championship but it was anything but easy as they twice had to overcome a deficit, including a six-run fifth inning by the Colts that erased a 3-1 lead the ladies had built in the previous at bat.
With their goal firmly in sight, the Tribe battled back and answered the call with six runs of its own in the bottom of the inning and in turn bolstered the confidence of freshman relief pitcher Sierra Neiss, who was the victim of a three-run blast off the bat of Colts' Maddie Sitler that easily cleared the fence in center field increasing the lead to 7-3.
"Sierra did a great job, she came in and made good pitches, only an unfortunate play with the sun getting in our fielder's eyes giving CC an additional at bat hurt her," commented head coach Wayne Emenheiser referring to a small pop-up that dropped in untouched behind third base. "But she regrouped from that and threw two scoreless innings to finish the deal."
The young pitcher took the ball from ace Mikayla Yoder who surrendered four runs, two of which were earned, on seven hits over four and a third innings, including a solo shot over the left field fence by Karson Hastings to open the fifth.
After a shaky start in the first inning, in which a throwing error allowed McDonald to reach third and eventually score on a sacrifice fly by Olivia Jordan, Yoder worked her way out of trouble and ended the inning with the Colts ahead 1-0.
Donegal came back in the fourth when Yoder (1-3, double) stepped to the plate with one out and sent the first pitch she saw from Colts' pitcher Avery Winchall over Hasting's head in left field to end up on second.
Kaitlyn Witmer (2-3, double, 3 RBI) worked a walk and Hornick (1-2, 1 RBI) sent a single into center field which plated Jessica Kosheba, courtesy runner for Yoder, to tie the game at 1-1.
Enter Robinson, the consummate, unflappable leader who could very easily make the case as the best individual athlete to walk the halls of Donegal and is most assuredly a shoe-in for a future spot in the school's Athletic Hall of Fame.
When asked about his star second baseman, Emenheiser acknowledged not only Robinson but his entire group of graduating seniors saying, "Rachel as well as all of the seniors have showed great leadership and the never-give-up-attitude their entire careers, I believe that is why they really had so much success during their careers, along with being tremendously talented softball players."
He also knows the intangibles that come along with having such an experienced group of veterans, "The seniors are a great group of young ladies; between all of them they have played over 450 varsity games and have won every team championship possible, Section, League, District and now State Championship. It has been an honor watching them play and coaching them over the last four years, seeing them mature into the amazing young ladies they all are. We will miss all of them and what they brought to this historic team."
As is most often the case in athletics the playmakers come through in the clutch, and this time was no exception as Robinson (2-3, triple, 3 RBI) ripped a shot into left field that got by Hastings for a bases-clearing triple and a 3-1 Donegal lead.
Cedar Cliff, which eliminated Donegal from the District Three tournament with a 9-5 semifinal victory, proved that it belonged in the title game as well by putting up the monster fifth inning that could very easily have demoralized the Indians.
Unfortunately, for the Colts, quitting is not in the Indians' DNA and they never hung their heads or got caught up in negative thoughts.
"The one thing about our group is that they never get stressed and never give up. I truly believe they do not look at the opponent but look at what they need to do to win," stated Emenheiser. "I did not need to say anything after the top of the fifth, they were focused from the time they got to the dugout to turn things around."
Showing cracks in the armor, Winchell surrendered back-to-back walks to Emily Graham (0-2, run scored) and Savanna Kolenda (0-3, run scored) in the bottom half of the fifth.
Now, feeling a shift in momentum, Donegal's offense rose to the challenge as Morgan Biesecker (1-4, 1 RBI) singled home Graham and Yoder worked Winchell for her third walk of the inning to load the bases.
Sensing an opportunity, Witmer (2-3, double, 3 RBI) calmly stepped to the plate and showed the stadium why she finished the season with the third highest batting average at .455.
With the count at 1-2 the senior first baseman ripped a line drive past a diving Naomi Englehart in right-center for a bases-clearing double to knot the game at 7-7.
Robinson's second hit of the game went for a single that plated Witmer for the 8-7 lead, and Berg (1-3) followed with a single into shallow right that advanced Robinson to second base before Neiss (1-33, 1RBI) sent her home on a base hit to make it 9-7 heading into the sixth.
Neiss, her confidence restored, settled in on the rubber and retired five of the final seven batters she faced to finish with three unearned runs on four hits and one strikeout.
Cedar Cliff threatened in both of the remaining innings as McDonald singled and stole second in the sixth, but was thrown out
attempting to steal third, and Jordan doubled to start the seventh, advancing to third on a sacrifice fly by Winchell.
A put-out by Kolenda at short and the final pop-up to Berg in right sealed the deal for the ladies and completed a win for the ages.
To reach the finals Donegal faced Section Three foe Lampeter-Strasburg in the semifinals and handled the Pioneers, 7-0. It was the fourth time the Indians defeated L-S in five tries this season.
Junior left fielder Grace Miller played superb defense tracking down five fly balls including two diving catches to help keep the L-S offense in check.
Yoder pitched five innings of four hit ball while Neiss only surrendered two hits over the final two.
Hornick (3-4, double, 2RBI) and Robinson (2-4, double, 2RBI) led at the plate for the Indians.
Eight years prior to Friday's romping celebration in the infield another medal ceremony took place on the infield of Glatfelter Field in Columbia.
That one marked the end of a 10u tournament featuring a Mount Joy team and a Maytown team that battled to an international tiebreak finish in the championship game.
No less than four of the players on the field that day in 2009 comprised the starting lineup of Friday's game and I am sure there were more than this aging writer's memory can recall.
As the parents of both teams gathered on the field to take photos to add to half-filled scrapbooks, Chris Miller, former Donegal baseball coach and father of Grace, looked around and announced to those of us on the field that we could very well be looking at a future state championship team.
Congratulations to those young ladies whose childhood dreams from that day finally came true on a hot day in State College, as well as every other player in the dugout on Friday whose name will be forever associated with a part of Donegal history.
Indians Advance to PIAA Class 5A Semifinals June 12, 2017
Two down, two to go. That was the line for Donegal as last week ended with the lady Indians advancing to the PIAA semifinals for the second year running in their fifth straight tournament appearance.
Donegal moved its record to 25-4 after eliminating West Chester Henderson (16-9) 3-2 in the opening round of 5A play last Monday and then holding on to defeat Abington Heights (15-3) on Thursday, 6-5, in a 10 inning International Tiebreaker in the quarterfinal round.
Scoring three runs in the first inning against WCH, Donegal took an early lead which they never relinquished as Makyla Yoder kept the damage to a minimum by only surrendering two runs on four hits in the complete game victory.
Yoder retired the first eight batters she faced before giving up her first hit of the game in the third inning. That resulted in West Chester Henderson's first run as Madelynn Skinner turned on the second pitch she saw and sent it rocketing over the wall in center field.
One more run in the fourth off the bat of Cameron Trotter marked the end of scoring for the Warriors as Yoder settled in and took care of business by putting away 11 of the remaining 12 Henderson batters.
Rachel Robinson (2-2, double, 2RBI) gave Donegal its early advantage in the first when she ripped a hard, bases-loaded shot into left field which bounced over the wall for a ground rule double and scored courtesy runners Jessica Kosheba and Cheyenne Klinedinst.
Morgan Biesecker (1-3) got the ball rolling when she took first on a one-out walk and then advanced to second when Yoder (1-4) singled into left. Katlyn Witmer then loaded the bases when she drew a walk of her own, scoring from third on a wild pitch to McKenna Berg.
One thing that head coach Wayne Emenheiser appreciates is how the offensive play of Robinson has come around following a major surgery that forced her to miss her entire junior season.
"I believe Robinson is back to where she was two years ago, before the knee injury," said Emenheiser. "It took some time for her to get back offensively, but defensively she has been a stud all year long."
Both aspects of Robinson's game were on display in the quarterfinal matchup with Abington Heights as the senior made a few clutch plays in extra innings including a diving snag of a line drive in the eighth and delivered the eventual winning run when she tripled home pinch runner Kosheba in the tenth.
Donegal also had help from freshman pitcher Sierra Neiss who has done well for Emeheiser this season when called on in relief of Yoder and has also recorded some starts as well.
With Yoder pitching well into the sixth inning and holding the explosive Comets offense scoreless on three hits, it seemed as if Neiss would be a non-factor as the lady Indians led 5-0 at that point.
However, fortunes can change quickly and Yoder soon found herself in a bind after surrendering three runs in the sixth and with runners on first and second in the seventh inning with no outs.
With the lead cut to 5-3, Neiss received the call and got out of the inning, but not before giving up two unearned runs to tie the game. She settled in after that, however, and retired the next nine batters, setting the stage for Robinson (4-5, triple, RBI).
"Sierra Neiss has been a pleasant surprise," stated Emenheiser. "Makyla has carried the pitching duties for so long and has had so much success, it's nice to be able to take a little bit of the pressure off her with Sierra, they make a great one two punch."
He knows that they are fortunate to have essentially two starters who can deliver whenever the circumstances dictate. "The game of softball is a pitcher dominated game and to have two great pitchers is a bonus," added Emenheiser.
Scoreless after the first inning, Berg (2-6) represented the first Donegal run when she scored on a two-out single by Emily Graham (2-6, 1RBI).
Biesecker (2-6, 2RBI) drove in two more with a single to center that plated Graham and Savanna Kolenda (4-5) who reached with base single of her own.
Witmer (3-6, 2RBI) made it 5-0 in the fourth inning when she brought home both Kolenda and Graham on an infield grounder.
In the tenth, with the score tied at 5-5, the International Tiebreak took effect which places the player who made the final out in the previous inning on second base, in this case it was Witmer.
Emenheiser pinch-ran Kosheba in her place, however, who advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by Peighton Hornick (2-5) and then came home on Robinson's RBI.
The win paired Donegal with a very familiar foe in long- time rival Lampeter-Strasburg (22-6) which defeated Bishop Shanahan 5-4 to advance to the semis.
Donegal held a 3-1advantage over the Pioneers heading into the matchup which has actually already been played as of this printing.
Asked if the familiarity between the two teams and the Indians' subsequent dominance might cause his players to lose some focus, Emenheiser said, "I do not think the girls will overlook LS, they realize at this point in the season that everyone is bringing their best."
Indians Finish 3rd in Districts, Head to States June 5, 2017
Donegal's softball team in recent years has made playing in the post-season a habit, using the regular season as merely a warm up. This year is no different as the lady Indians began District Three Class 5A play at home against Daniel Boone in a game that was originally scheduled to go down on Thursday the 25th, but was moved to Friday due to weather conditions.
Avoiding a near upset by the 11th seeded Scouts, Donegal used a two-run seventh inning to seal an 8-7 victory on a walk off single by Savanna Kolenda that scored Sierra Neiss from second base.
Down 8-7 and facing elimination Rachel Robinson (1-2) coaxed a walk and then rounded the bases on a bunt by McKenna Berg (2-3, 1RBI) that was misplayed, tying the game at 8-8.
After Neiss (2-2, 2RBI) also walked, advancing Berg to second, Emily Graham (1-4, 1RBI) hit into a fielder's choice at short that forced out Berg at third setting the stage for Kolenda (4-4, double, 3RBI) who ripped a single into right field to complete the comeback.
Daniel Boone got to Donegal starter Makyla Yoder for two runs in the second to tie the game after RBI singles by Kaitlyn Witmer (2-4, 1RBI) and Berg in the first inning gave Donegal the early lead.
Yoder eventually left the game in the fourth after surrendering five runs on a two-out Daniel Boone rally that ended when reliever Neiss recorded the put-out on an infield pop-up.
Neiss settled in and finished the game by retiring nine of the ten batters she faced while walking one.
Donegal answered in the fifth with five runs of its own, setting up the dramatic finish which propelled them into the semifinals where they matched up with Cedar Cliff, the number 10 seed.
Under a steady downpour at Lebanon Valley College last Tuesday, the ladies found themselves playing catch up against the Colts who led 3-2 heading into the seventh inning before exploding for six runs to take command of the game.
Kolenda (2-4, HR, 4RBI), who was the star of the game for Donegal at the plate, sent shockwaves through the stadium when she stroked a three-run homer with two outs in the bottom of the seventh but the rally was short lived as the ladies dropped into the consolation game with a 9-5 loss.
Yoder took the ball to start and gave up three runs on four hits including two home runs over five innings while striking out two before Neiss came on in the sixth and struggled with control as she surrendered six runs, five of which were earned, on four hits.
"Cedar Cliff played well in the semis against us," stated head coach Wayne Emenheiser. "I thought we played well also until the last inning when the field conditions became an issue for our pitcher, those are the breaks though."
Morgan Biesecker (1-3, 1RBI) put Donegal on the board in the third inning when her RBI single in to centerfield plated Graham (1-3) and tied the game at 1-1.
Later, down 3-1 in the fifth, it was Kolenda who delivered with a single that sent Graham home again to cut the deficit to 3-2 before the huge final inning for the Colts put them out of reach.
With five teams advancing to the PIAA tournament, Donegal's third place game was one in which the outcome was irrelevant. However, an old friend waited for them in the form of Lampeter-Strasburg, 9-3 losers to Spring Grove in the other semifinal matchup.
Owning a 2-1 advantage over the Pioneers this season, including a tie break for the Section Three crown, the odds of Donegal making it 3-1 against the formidable foes were not weighing in their favor.
With Yoder resting, Neiss took to the rubber and threw a complete five-hit one run game as the ladies bucked the odds and defeated the Pioneers 4-1 for their third victory over the section rivals this year.
Peighton Hornick went 3-4 with one run scored and Berg tripled and drove in two runs while going 2-3 to help power Donegal to its third place finish.
L-S scored its lone run early taking the lead in the first inning, but the Indians scored twice in the second and once more in both the third and seventh innings to earn the much needed win and carry some momentum into the State tournament.
"Neiss threw a great game against LS (5 hits) and we hit well (11 hits)," acknowledged Emenheiser.
"We are looking forward to playing in the state tournament; it is always our goal to make it there. We are fortunate to be playing in our 5th straight state tournament and 7th in 8 years. The thing about playing in June is that every team has the ability to beat you if you don't play well or if you get a bad break, it's that close."
Donegal was represented in three events during the PIAA meet held at Shippensburg University over Memorial Day weekend and while none of the athletes competed past the preliminaries, Alice Fernald scored a personal best in the 400 and only missed qualifying by .45 of a second.
"We were happy with how the girls did overall. Of course, you always hope to place/make it to finals, but sometimes it's just not in the cards," stated head coach Gretchen Colwell.
Her time of 57.69 in the second heat of the prelims placed her ninth overall in the state and was a only a gust of wind behind Exeter's Faith Kehinde who clocked in at 57.24 in the fourth heat and locked up the eighth and final qualifying spot for Saturday's finals.
Taylor Nissly competed in the fourth and final heat of the 200 prelims later in Friday's competition and missed the cut by an even narrower margin as her time of 25.95 was a shoelace width behind Ni'Asia Williams from Girls' High who finished in 25.80 and also locked up the final qualifier for Saturday's finals.
Both girls also ran with Ashley Maxwell and Aliza Young in the 4x400 relay prelims on Friday with the team finishing in 4:03.96 which was exactly three seconds off of their seed time of 4:01.96 from Districts.
Performing on the big stage is not an easy task and only experience can properly prepare an athlete for the unique pressure that comes along with competing with the best in the sport.
Colwell knows this and likes what she saw in her top runners. "The other nice thing, every girl we took to states is an underclassman, so we can look forward to seeing them next season! "
Indians Top Bears in District 5A Opener May 26, 2017
No more AAA softball? No problem, at least as far as Donegal is concerned. Since a PIAA realignment that moved them up to 5A, it is been business as usual for the Indians as they set their sights on yet another District Three title in what is hopefully a long march into post-season play.
The third seeded Indians (21-3) opened play against backyard rival Elizabethtown (11-10), the number 14 seed, last Tuesday at home. By the time the dust on the infield had settled the ladies were 10-1 victors and headed into the quarterfinals against 11th seeded Daniel Boone (11-7).
Donegal out-hit the Bears 12-3 but the game remained scoreless into the bottom of the third until McKenna Berg (2-3, double) dashed home on a sacrifice fly by Emily Graham who interestingly drove in three runs without a single hit during the game on two sac-flies. Two more runs later the Indians held a 3-0 lead and they never looked back.
Behind a strong performance by Makyla Yoder on the rubber, Donegal added two more in the fourth, four in the fifth and one more in the sixth.
Yoder went five innings without giving up a run while only surrendering two hits and striking out six of the 18 batters she faced. Sierra Neiss came on in relief in the sixth with her only hiccup coming in the same inning when the Bears tallied their only run of the game.
Neiss only gave up one hit and struck out three while walking four of the 12 batters she faced over two innings of play.
Savanna Kolenda (2-3, double, 2RBI) and Rachel Robinson (2-3, 2 doubles, 2RBI) helped at the plate as did Morgan Biesecker (2-3, 1RBI) and Rachel Overlander (1-2, 1RBI).
Due to an early holiday deadline and subsequent postponement of Thursday's quarterfinals, the Indians' game against Daniel Boone will be reported in next week's edition.
Donegal Tops GS, Bows to PM in L-L Playoffs May 22, 2017
Donegal's softball team has experienced a great level of success over the years cementing them as one of the premier programs in District Three and a serious contender at the State level as well. Talented players backed by solid coaching built a solid foundation that continues to produce outstanding results year in and year out and this season is no different.
The ladies captured the 2017 Section Three crown, a title that has mysteriously eluded them in recent years, and now have their sights set on District Three gold after a disappointing loss to Penn Manor in the L-L League semi-finals on Tuesday.
The eventual League champion Comets, backed by pitching ace Brittany Hook, used an early burst in their first at bat to score three runs and held off the lady Indians 5-2. In order to reach Penn Manor, however, the Donegal squad tore through Garden Spot 17-2 in a run shortened quarterfinal matchup the day before.
Makyla Yoder pitched three strong innings against the Spartans on Monday striking out three of the 15 batters she faced while giving up two runs, one earned, on five hits before Sierra Neiss came on in the fourth and struck out the side to enforce the mercy rule.
With a monster day at the plate by Peighton Hornick (3-4, 2 Doubles, 4RBI), Donegal's offense proved too much for Garden Spot as the ladies put up 18 hits and scored in each of the four innings that were played.
Garden Spot scored an early run in the first inning but soon relinquished the lead after Savanna Kolenda (2-4) and Yoder (2-3, 1RBI) both reached on singles and subsequently scored when Kaitlyn Witmer (3-3, Double, 2RBI) hit a bases clearing triple into center field, scoring herself on an error.
Hornick, who tripled into center as well, came home when Rachel Robinson (1-3, 4RBI) sacrificed her across to make it 4-1 in favor of Donegal.
The ladies batted around the order in the second resulting in five runs and sent eight batters to the plate in both of the final two innings to score eight more times and finish the day early.
With Hook on the rubber in Tuesday's matchup against Penn Manor, the Indians managed just two hits and no runs scored over four innings of play while the Comets tacked on four runs on of four hits over the same span.
Emily Graham (3-3, HR, 2RBI) sparked Donegal with a long ball into left center in the fifth and raced home to put the ladies on the board cutting the Comet lead to 4-1 but the Indians left two stranded to end the inning.
Graham put another run in the books in the fifth scoring McKenna Berg (1-3) from third with her second RBI of the night. Berg started the two-out rally by singling into left field before Neiss walked sending Graham to the plate with runners on first and second. Her single into left center sent Berg scampering home and advanced Neiss to second before the Comets ended the inning and eventually the game.
Yoder pitched two innings giving up four hits which included a three-run home run in the first before Neiss came on for four innings of relief surrendering two runs on three hits.
Last week also marked the announcement of the L-L Coaches All-Star teams and Donegal was well represented as five lady Indians were named to the Section Three first team with two honorable mentions.
Making the team were Yoder (P), Morgan Biesecker (C), Witmer (1B), Robinson (2B), and Kolenda (SS). Honorable mentions went to Hornick (3B), and Berg (OF).
Robinson also earned accolades for her achievements in the classroom as well as in athletics as she was named the 2017 girls' recipient of the A. Landis Brackbill Award which is given out annually to the top boy and girl scholar-athletes in the L-L League.
The requisite for the prestigious award is to maintain a 3.0 GPA and letter or play in 75 percent of two or more PIAA sanctioned sports in one year and includes a $500 dollar scholarship.
Robinson, whose GPA was a 3.88, is already set to attend the University of Virginia in the fall on a full athletic scholarship for field hockey.
Athletes from all around District Three converged on Shippensburg University on Friday and Saturday to compete for a spot on the podium in the District meet during the run-up to the PIAA Championships.
Members of both the boys' and girls' teams from Donegal took part with six finishes in the top ten in six different events. In addition there were two individuals and one relay team for the girls that qualified for the PIAA meet.
Alice Fernald led the day for both squads as she earned a bronze medal in the 400 with a time of 57.75 during Saturday's portion of the track events. She also ran the first leg of the 1600 relay teaming with Ashley Maxwell, Taylor Nissly, and Aliza Young for a sixth place finish with a time of 4:01.96 which also set a new Donegal school record. Both times were good enough to punch a ticket to states.
Head coach Gretchen Colwell acknowledged her relay team's efforts and had nothing but praise for them. "These four ladies have been determined to reach the state championship level this weekend and have been working unbelievably hard with Coach Schuck. I'm unbelievably proud of what they have accomplished thus far."
That represented the second strong finish for the girls in the relays as Kalee Fahndrich, Fernald, Nissly, and Maxwell placed seventh in the earlier running of the 400 by finishing in 50.02. They were just nipped by the team from Cumberland Valley which claimed sixth with a time of 49.81.
Nissly also placed sixth overall in the 200 by first running a 25.58 and a 25.62 respectively in Friday's prelims and resulting semi-finals in order to qualify for Saturday's final in which she ran a slightly slower 25.65. That was also good enough to send her on to the next stage as the third Donegal representative for the PIAA meet.
In Friday's portion of the field events Rosalind Staie placed 11th in the shot put with a toss of 33-09 while on Saturday Alyssa McNece took 15th in the javelin with a throw of 104-03.
Overall the ladies finished tied for 22nd in the field of 44 schools with Manheim Township scoring a total of 14 points during the two days of competition.
Meanwhile, the boys ended up in a four way tie with Governor Mifflin, Exeter, and Spring Grove for 41st with only two points during the meet.
Both of those team points came courtesy of field events held Friday. Avery Walker was the first Indian to place when he triple jumped 43-03.5 and landed in eighth place, and Brooks Bear represented the second point of the day when he tossed a 50-02 in the shot put which also put him in eighth place.
"Both of these boys made it into finals by the skin of their teeth, but stepped up huge and hit their personal best marks," stated Colwell. "It was really exciting to see their season conclude with such exciting finishes."
Bear also garnered a 16th place finish on Saturday in the javelin with a toss of 148-01, but it was teammate Nick Ketner who placed slightly higher in the same event throwing for an 11th place finish of 159-08.
In earlier competition on the second day Ryan Stainecker earned an 18th place finish in the 400 with a time of 52.39 and was just edged out for 16th by Cumberland Valley's Luke Updegraff who finished in 52.34.
Donegal Baseball Tops E-town in Season Finale May 15, 2017
While the Donegal baseball team didn't have the type of success it was hoping for, finishing at 6-10 on the season and placing fourth in Section two, there is still hope for the future. The Indians were never really blown out in any of their losses and they only graduate two players, so next year could be a turning point.
They ended the season with two games last week and earned a split as they took a 5-1 loss to Ephrata on Monday and then followed it up on a positive note by beating Elizabethtown 7-6 on Tuesday.
Dawson Magar took the loss against the Mounts as he surrendered five runs off of two hits while striking out five over three and a third innings of work before Richard Velez came on and held Ephrata to only two more hits.
Kobe Bistline (2-3, 1RBI) accounted for the lone Donegal run when he singled home Tanner Kohler (1-3, double) in the fourth.
In the final game, against Elizabethtown, it was Cameron Ellis who got the win as the Indians, who were out hit 11-7, made the most of their at bats to pull out the one run victory.
Donegal scored five runs in the third after the Bears put up three in the first and added another in the second to grab a 4-0 lead. Elizabethtown tied things up again when they scored one in the sixth, but two more Donegal runs in the fifth were enough to hold off the home team which scored once more in the sixth for the final score.
The story could not have been written any better for the end of softball's regular season for the Donegal Indians. Meeting L-S in only the third game of the season, the Pioneers handed Donegal its second straight loss and took command of first place in Section Two, giving the ladies a date to target on the calendar.
"We just wanted to have an opportunity to play LS with something on the line," stated head coach Wayne Emenheiser. "We felt we did not play up to our abilities or with enough passion the first time we played."
Instead of tucking their tails, the lady Indians responded by reeling off 17 straight wins, including a 6-1 redeeming victory over their long-time rivals in week five to set up a rubber match, this time for all the marbles with the section title hanging in the balance. More on that action later.
First, the ladies had to win out in order to force the playoff with L-S, and they accomplished that by pounding out 15 hits which resulted in 12 runs against ELCO last Monday and then used a 13-run second inning to march past Northern Lebanon on Tuesday, 15-0.
Sierra Neiss flirted with perfection against the Raiders over seven innings of no-hit ball in which the only blemish was one walk surrendered while Savanna Kolenda (3-4, double, 2RBI) and Kaitlyn Witmer (1-2, 2RBI) helped lead the offensive charge for the Indians.
Donegal scored in every inning but the second en route to securing the first of two victories needed to meet the Pioneers.
In the three inning, run-shortened game with the Vikings on Tuesday, Makyla Yoder struck out four of the ten batters she faced and only gave up one hit while walking none.
Rachel Robinson (2-2, double, homerun, 2RBI) and Emily Graham (2-2, triple, 3RBI) accounted for one third of Donegal's offense while McKenna Berg (1-1, 2RBI), Witmer (1-3, 2RBI) Shaianne Boyer (1-1, 2RBI), Kolenda (1-3, 1RBI), Yoder (1-3, 1RBI), and Peighton Hornick (3-3, 1RBI) all contributed as well.
Now, for the end of the chapter. Wednesday brought the Indians and the Pioneers together again, this time at Warwick, for the showdown that would determine the Section Two champion.
After both teams scored in the first inning, Donegal took the lead in the third when Yoder, who held the Pioneers to only two runs on five hits over four innings on the mound, brought Graham home on a sacrifice fly. L-S came back in the fourth, however, taking advantage of poor play on the part of the Indians to eventually tie the game at 2-2.
Donegal then exploded for six runs in the bottom half of the inning, sparked by Rachel Overlander's two-RBI single. Graham then smoked a triple into right field, scoring two more runs and crossing the plate on an errant throw home to make it 7-2.
The Indians extended that lead when Kolenda also tripled and then was able to advance home on a Morgan Biesecker ground ball. Hornick singled home two more runs in the sixth while Neiss shut down L-S for the save and the Section crown.
When asked about beating their nemesis twice in such a short time Emenheiser replied, "The last two weeks have gone very well. We accomplished everything we had worked for since the early season loss to LS."
He also knows that even though there is momentum on the side of the Indians, this time of year is when the pressure begins to build. "I feel we are playing very well at this time heading into the post season. That being said every team we play the rest of the season will be a playoff team so one mistake can dictate the outcome of a game," Emenheiser stated. "I am confident that if we bring our A game there is an opportunity for us to be playing into June."
Last weekend marked the beginning of the post-season for both of Donegal's track teams as the L-L League meet commenced on Friday and ended on Saturday with weather better suited for early spring making a tough go of it for all involved.
With dual Section titles still waiting for the ink to dry, the boys and girls both entered the meet with high expectations and came away with some success as the girls placed eighth overall with a team score of 31 and the boys scored 29 to place 13th.
The boys enjoyed most of their success in the field as Brooks Bear placed a team high second in the shot put with a toss of 49-9.5 and placed 13th in the javelin with a throw of 133-3, while Avery Walker's distance of 42-10 in the triple jump was good enough to garner third as was Nick Ketner's throw of 178-0 in the javelin.
Calvin Woods cleared 5-6 in the high jump for 13th to go with his 15th place time of 43.62 in the 300 hurdles, and Payton Luft went 18-5.75 in the long jump to garner 19th.
On the track Ryan Stainecker led the team in the individual events with a fourth place finish in the 400 in 51.85 while Keeryen Stevens (19.05) came in eighth in the 110 hurdles, Silas Buckwalter (4:45.81) was 10th in the 1600, Keith Atayde (2:07.09) was 19th in the 800, and Dylan Zuch (10:33.19) finished 25th in the 3200.
In the relays, Cameron Arntz, Jared Collazo, Tyler Rupp, and Walker placed sixth in the 400 with a time of 45.01 and Arntz, Nicholas Jordan, Woods, and Stainecker ran the 1600 in 3:37.84 for an 11th place finish.
Taylor Nissly and Alice Fernald both had a strong showing on the track for the girls as Fernald took second in the 400 with a time of 58.48 and Nissly placed fourth in the 200 with a time of 25.88.
The duo also helped out the relay teams as Kalee Fahndrich, Fernald, Nissly, and Ashley Maxwell placed fourth in the 400 in 50.45, and Fernald, Maxwell, Nissly, and Aliza Young ran a third place time of 4:06.71 in the 1600, while Seneca Straub placed 25th in the 1600 with a time of 6:05.24 to round out the track events.
Rosalind Staie secured a team high fifth place finish in the field by tossing 34-0 in the shot put, and Alyssa McNece (100-10) placed sixth in the javelin ahead of Hannah McNece (89-9) who placed 11th.
Other finishers included Lauren Becker (4-8) taking 10th in the high jump, Janell Brinser (7-6) placing 16th in the pole vault, Carly Diffendefer (30-06.25) placing 16th in the triple jump as well as 20th in the long jump with a 14-6.25, and Aliza Johns (72-0) who finished 24th in the discus.
Donegal Track Teams Cap Undefeated Seasons May 8, 2017
It has been a wild ride for the Donegal track and field team this season with both the boys and girls blowing through the competition. Last week's meet against an undermanned Columbia team was no different as the boys won 137-12 and the girls came away with a 123-26 victory.
Both wins wrapped up undefeated seasons and dual Section Three championships for the Indians as the boys secured the first ever title for Donegal and the girls captured their third straight crown.
In their historic school victory, the boys won all 18 events as they outscored the Tide 81-6 in track events and 56-6 in the field with Cameron Arntz and Calvin Woods doubling up on individual wins.
Arntz outran the field in the 100 finishing in 12.2 while his time of 24.2 was the best in the 200 and Woods took the 300 hurdles with a time of 43.7 as well as the high jump by clearing 5-4. He also finished second in the 100 hurdles in 17.2 to finish with a team high 13 points.
Five other athletes garnered individual victories while also placing in other events, most notably Brooks Bear who won the shot put with a toss of 46-2, placed second in the javelin with a 157-1 and was third in the discus with a throw of 108-2.
Meanwhile, Ryan Stainecker won the 400 (53.8), and took third in the 100 (12.2) as well as the 200 (24.8). Keeryen Stevens was first in the 100 hurdles (16.5) and second in the 300 hurdles (44.0), Silas Buckwalter took the 800 while placing second in the 1600 (5:27.7), and Cody Canterbury won the 3200 (11:50.5) while finishing third in the 1600 in 5:27.8.
All three Donegal relay teams also won with Ryan Zuch, Hunter Williams, Kyle Anderson, and Brandon Hess taking the 3200 (10:27.1), Arntz, Jared Collazo, Tyler Rupp, and Avery Walker winning the 400 in 45.4, and Collazo, Nicholas Jordan, Tyler Snyder, and Arntz taking the 1600 (3:53.9).
Other individual winners included Aran Mullen (5:16.1) in the 1600, Payton Luft (18-7) in the long jump, Walker (41-6) in the triple jump, Jarred Ford (11-6) in the pole vault, Nicholas Kettner (170-8) in the javelin, and Connor Horst (116-7) in the discus.
Placing for the Indians were Aedan Wilkinson (19.1) third in the 100 hurdles and the 300 hurdles (47.6), Andrew Melville (12.2) second in the 100, Jared Bent (56.9) second in the 400 and third in the long jump (17-9), Nathan Brubaker (58.3) third in the 400 and the triple jump (37-3.5), Dylan Zuch (2:14.6) third in the 800, Ian Rineer (12:39.5) second in the 3200, Kyle Anderson (13:35.8) third in the 3200, Andrew Stwalley (5-0) second in the high jump, Davon Brantley (10-6) second in the pole vault, Jarad Brown (10-0) third in the pole vault, Cael Rapp (157-1) second in the shot put and third in the javelin (150-8), and Mason Sauder (113-8) second in the discus and third in the shot put (37-.75).
Erin Slattery, Taylor Nissly, and Carly Diffenderfer helped lead the lady Indians by scoring a combined 33 points as Donegal outpaced Columbia 66-20 on the track and 57-6 in the field.
All three athletes were multiple event winners as Slattery took both the 100 and 300 hurdles with respective times of 17.5 and 50.5, Nissly won the 100 in 13.2 and the 200 in 25.5, and Diffenderfer won the long jump (14-9.5) and the triple jump (30-6.5) and was third in the high jump (4-2).
Jaiden Droege, who placed first in the pole vault (7-6) and second in the long jump (13-10.5), and Jamilyn Nimo, who won the discus (85-11) and was second in the shot put (32-6.5), finished up as event winners for the ladies.
In addition, Donegal won all three relays as well. In the 3200, Megan Myers, Alize Woodard, Abbyrose Dannecker, and Ella DeBruin finished in 11:46.9. In the 400 it was Kalee Fahndrich, Alice Fernald, Nissly, and Ashley Maxwell with a 50.6, while in the 1600 it was Alexandra Daly, Hannah Lloyd, Leigha Lehman-Funk, and Olivia Giron with a time of 5:08.08.
Placing for Donegal were Lloyd (20.9) third in the 100 hurdles and second in the triple jump with a 29.5, Fahndrich (13.7) third in the 100, Seneca Straub (6:21.0) second in the 1600, McKenzie DuBusky (6:53.9) third in the 1600, Lauren Redcay (69.2) second in the 400 ahead of Natalie Fellenbaum (70.1), Daly (57.1) third in the 300 hurdles, Myers (3:05.8) second in the 800 ahead of Woodard (3:12.3), Fernald (26.7) second in the 200, Anna Hawbaker (16:04.3) second in the 3200, Lehman-Funk (28-6) third in the triple jump, Alyssa McNece (4-6) second in the high jump ahead of Diffenderfer (4-2) as well as in the javelin (107-9) ahead of Hannah McNece (103.5), Janell Brinser (7-0) second in the pole vault ahead of Hayley Grosh (6-6), and Aliza Johns (79-7) second in the discus ahead of Mackenzie Bedwell (75-10), as well as third in the shot put (27-8.75)
As is usually the case in Section Three, the final outcome will not be decided until the dust settles on the Pioneers of Lampeter-Strasburg and your lady Indians of Donegal. In fact, as you read these words it has already been resolved between these two L-L League powerhouses in a rivalry that seemingly is not going away anytime soon.
After redeeming their only league loss of the season to L-S a week and a half ago, Donegal entered this week at 13-1 with two games left on the schedule and trailed the Pioneers (14-1), who had one more game to play, by only half a game.
Both teams have already locked up berths in the League tournament which is scheduled to kick off on Saturday and should they both have won out on the season, will meet in a 7:00 playoff game Wednesday at Warwick.
Last week ended with two more wins for the ladies as they easily handled Cocalico 11-0, and survived an early scare by Manheim Central to come away with a 7-3 victory.
Makyla Yoder and Sierra Neiss teamed up to throw a no hit game against the Eagles while facing a combined 16 batters. Yoder struck out three while going two innings and collecting the win. Neiss sat down six over three innings for the save.
McKenna Berg (1-2) provided the fireworks for Donegal utilizing her only hit of the game wisely as she went yard and drove in three runs on the day as the Indians scored five in the first inning and six in the second to force the 10-run rule in the fifth.
Rachel Robinson (1-2) drove in two runs while hitting a double, as did Rachel Overlander (1-2, 1RBI) who also doubled.
Unsurprisingly it was Manheim Central (8-6) who provided Donegal with its biggest challenge as the always tough Barons scored two unanswered runs to erase a 1-0 deficit and take a 2-1 lead in the fourth inning.
A strong four-run fifth inning for the lady Indians put them back in the driver's seat, however, and they never looked back, scoring once more in the sixth to make it 6-3 after Manheim scored again in the bottom of the fifth. They added one more run in the seventh for added insurance.
Yoder threw a complete four-hit game, striking out nine and only giving up one earned run for the win. She helped her cause as well going 3-4 with a home run and one RBI while Peighton Hornick (2-4) also came up big at the plate with a double and three RBI.
While they struggled as a young team throughout the season, the Donegal boys had seven players represent the green and white during last week's L-L League tournament.
Andrew Ashley, who had a first round bye in flight one, opened up the tournament with a close 3-6, 6-3, 2-6 loss to number four seed Mark Cannon from Lancaster Catholic but rebounded well to eventually place fifth.
After his initial loss, Ashley defeated ELCO's Dylan Spitler 7-5, 6-4 to advance into the fifth place final against Pequea's Malachi Glick who defaulted the win to Ashley.
Aaron Stehman began flight two with a 6-1, 6-2 defeat of Toby Singer of Penn Manor, but then lost to second seeded Colby Martin of Cocalico 0-6, 0-6. Martin eventually went on to win first place.
Jarrett Herr played in flight three singles and had a tough draw as the unseeded Indian had to face top seed and eventual champion Kyle Peters from Manheim. While Herr played hard, Peters took the victory with a 6-0, 6-2 score.
Noah Hoffmaster rounded out Donegal's singles play in flight four against the number three seed from Manheim Township, Tom Woratyla who came away with a 6-0, 6-0 win.
In doubles, Donegal had two teams compete as Ashley and Stehman took on Cannon and Danny Bomberger from Lancaster Catholic in flight one and Austin Hollinger and Aaron Rugh faced off against Cocalico's Daniel Engle and Jared Glick in flight two.
Ashley and Stehman began with a first round bye before playing the Crusader duo who came out victorious with a 6-3, 3-6, (10-2) decision while Hollinger and Rugh fell to Engle and Glick by a score of 1-8.
The Indians split their two games last week beating Solanco 1-0 and losing to Lampeter-Strasburg 7-4. With two games remaining, Donegal (5-9) found itself in fourth place in Section Two.
Patrick Beaudoin walked to start the fourth inning against Solanco, advancing on a sacrifice bunt by Kobe Bistline and reaching third on the throw to first when Cameron Ellis grounded out to the Mules' third baseman. He scored on an error when Drew Bechtold grounded to short.
Dawson Magar started for the Indians going four and a third innings and giving up four hits before Richard Velez came on in the fifth to earn the save.
Donegal watched an early 2-0 lead disappear as the Pioneers scored seven unanswered runs before the Indians added two more in the sixth.
Ellis took the loss going two and a third innings and giving up five runs while Velez gave up two runs over an inning and two thirds worth of work. Kyle Hess was 2-4 while Beaudoin and Seiler Edwards each had one RBI.
Donegal Softball Survives Pequea With 1-0 Win May 1, 2017
With only four games to go in the season, the Lady Indians' ability to take care of what they can control put them right where they want to be, tied for first place in Section Three with none other than rival Lampeter-Strasburg.
After surviving a scare versus Section Four leader Pequea Valley in a 1-0 win last week, Donegal easily handled Columbia 18-1. On Friday, they handed L-S its only league loss, a 6-1 affair that also redeemed an early season defeat at the hands of the Pioneers, Donegal's lone league blemish as well.
Makyla Yoder held the Braves to only one hit over seven innings, striking out 11 while walking none in Monday's contest. Peighton Hornick (1-2, double, 1RBI) broke a scoreless tie in the fourth for the Indian's only run. Kaitlyn Witmer (2-3, double) and Savanna Kolenda (2-4) helped lead the ladies.
The runs came quick and early against Columbia as the Indians racked up 10 in the first inning and eight in the second while Sierra Neiss held the Crimson Tide to only one run on two hits for the win.
Neiss struck out four of the 15 batters she faced and drove in a run while going 1-3 on the day. Emily Graham (2-2, 3RBI), Morgan Biesecker (1-3, 2RBI), Witmer (1-2, 2RBI), and Jessica Kosheba (1-1, 2RBI) spear headed the Indian attack.
While six different batters drove in a run for Donegal against the Pioneers, it was the play of a few that stood out on Friday.
Yoder took the ball to start the game tied for school victories with Sami Houseal at 60 and walked off the field as the sole owner of that accomplishment with 61. She only allowed seven hits to the dangerous L-S batters while walking two.
Grace Miller also flashed some greatness in the field as she crashed into the left field fence to catch a deep fly ball that could have easily scored two runs for L-S with two outs in the sixth inning and completed a slick double play in the seventh with a sprinting shoe string catch and throw to first to clear the bases.
Kolenda (3-3, double, 1RBI) provided a spark at the plate for Donegal including a first inning double to right field that scored Biesecker for the first run of the game. Donegal scored twice more in both the second and third innings and once more in the fourth before giving up the lone run for L-S in the seventh.
It was a slow start for Donegal baseball last week as the Indians took three losses over four games including a heart breaking defeat at the hands of Manheim Township in a game that was postponed due to rain the week prior.
The boys began the week with a 5-1 loss to Penn Manor then lost an up-and-down game to Warwick 11-5. Against Manheim Township they resumed play with a 2-0 lead but watched it slip away in a 5-4 loss and then topped Conestoga Valley 7-2 to end the week on a positive note.
Against the Comets, a delayed steal in the top of the first inning put the Indians on board 1-0 when Kyle Hess crossed the plate after Dale Houser took second.
Hess began the inning with a sharp double to center field and then advanced to third on a passed ball. Houser walked and, with one out initiated the scoring play, eventually advancing to third where he was left stranded to end the inning.
Penn Manor came back in the bottom and scored two runs off of starting pitcher Richard Velez who surrendered five on nine hits before Kobe Bistline came on in relief in the sixth. The Comets put up three unanswered runs in that inning to seal the victory.
Donegal overcame a 1-0 deficit in the third inning against visiting Warwick on Wednesday by scoring twice on one wild pitch to take the lead. After the Warriors tied things up in the fourth, a disastrous nine-run sixth inning proved too much for the Indians to overcome, though they rallied late on a three-run home run by Hess (3-3, 3RBI) in the bottom of the seventh.
Dawson Magar took the loss for Donegal going five and a third innings with four runs surrendered on three hits while Bistline gave up five and Ryan Buckius gave up two.
After playing to a 2-0 lead after four innings against Manheim Township on April 21, the Indians took to the field on Thursday to resume play. The Streaks cut the lead to 2-1 in the fifth, but Donegal answered in the bottom half with two more for a comfortable 4-1 lead.
Unfortunately they would score no more while surrendering one in the sixth and three more in the seventh for the loss.
Cameron Ellis started for the Indians against Conestoga Valley on Friday, earning the win on four innings pitched with only two runs scored off of three hits. Richard Velez came on in the fifth and recorded nine straight outs for the save.
With a 4-0 lead after four, the Buckskins finally got to Ellis for two runs in the bottom half of the inning but three more Donegal runs in the fifth put the game out of reach.
Hess (2-4, 1RBI), Seiler Edwards (2-3, 1RBI), and Bistline (2-3, 1RBI) led at the plate for Donegal.
Adding to an already impressive season, both the boys' and girls' teams entered last week's battle of the unbeaten as they took on Annville-Cleona and not only won, but did it in dominating fashion.
Both teams seemingly cruised to their respective victories with the boys winning 118-32 and the girls coming away with a 108-41 win over the visitors from Annville.
Erin Slattery and Seneca Straub each earned two victories on the track, helping the lady Indians to a 70-16 advantage along the way.
Slattery ran a 17.7 in the high hurdles, while Aliza Young (21.0) finished third, and posted a 51.2 in the 300 hurdles ahead of second place finisher Alexandra Daly (55.7).
Straub, meanwhile, clocked a 5:57.2 in the 1600 to lead a Donegal sweep in which Ella DeBruin finished with a 6:12.5 and Mackenzie DuBusky posted a time of 6:12.8 and took the 3200 with a time of 13:10.6 with Megan Myers (15:01.8) placing second.
The ladies also cleaned up in the relays, winning all three events. In the 3200 it was Alize Woodard, DuBusky, Myers, and Debruin with a 13:32.9 while Fahndrich, Alice Fernald, Taylor Nissly, and Ashley Maxwell won the 400 in 50.4, and Slattery, DeBruin, DuBusky, and Janell Brinser posted a winning time of 4:39.2 in the 1600.
Two other Donegal runners captured first place finishes as well with Lauren Redcay winning the 400 in 68.6 while just edging out Natalie Fellenbaum (70.2) in second, and DeBruin who won the 800 in 2:50.3 just ahead of DuBusky (2:54.1).
While no Donegal girl doubled up in the field events the ladies did win five of seven and outscored the visitors 38-25.
With only a few grains of sand as the difference, Carly Diffenderfer (28-11) won the triple jump over teammates Hannah Lloyd (28-8) and Leigha Lehman-Funk (28-2) while Lauren Becker (4-4) and Alyssa McNeece (4-4) tied for first in the high jump.
McNeece also won the javelin with a throw of 102-10 while her sister Hannah placed third with a 95-2.
Rounding out the Donegal winners was Jamilyn Nimo who tossed a 33-9.5 in the shot put with Rosalind Staie (33-3.75) coming in third, and Aliza Johns who threw a 94-4 to take the discus.
Also placing on the track for the lady Indians were Taylor Nissly (12.3) and Kalee Fahndrich (12.8) who took second and third, respectively, in the 100 while Nissly notched another second place finish with a 25.3 in the 200 just ahead of Fernald (26.2) in third.
Meanwhile, in the field Jaiden Droege finished second in the long jump with a 14-9.25 and was third in the pole vault with a 7-0.
Silas Buckwalter scored a big day for the boys as he racked up three wins on the track while leading the Donegal runners to a 76-11 advantage. He and teammates Ryan Zuch and Keith Atayde swept two of those events for Donegal while Atayde also joined him in a third.
In the 1600, Buckwalter (4:38.3), Zuch (5:00.7), and Atayde (5:10.6) finished 1-2-3 while the trio duplicated the finish in the 3200 with respective times of 10:34.6, 10:50, and 11:16, and Buckwalter (2:14.8), Atayde (2:16.5), and Ian Rineer (2:17.7) cleaned up in the 800.
Keeryen Stevens also scored multiple wins by taking the high hurdles in 15.6 ahead of Calvin Woods (16.8) and Aedan Wilkinson (19.2), as well as the 300 hurdles with a time of 42.9 followed by Woods (43.7) and Tyler Snyder (46.4).
Ryan Stainecker represented the seventh of nine individual wins in the races by winning the 400 in 53.7 with Cameron Arntz (55.0) coming in second.
Donegal won all three relays as well with Rineer, Buckwalter, Chris Canterbury, and Atayde taking the 3200 with a time of 9:32, Arntz, Jared Collazo, Tyler Rupp, and Avery Walker winning the 400 in 45.2, and Stevens, Woods, Stainecker, and Walker teaming up to win the 1600 in 3:41.1.
With another outstanding day in the field in which the boys outscored the Dutchmen 42-21, Brooks Bear led the charge with three wins and one placement. He won the shot put with a toss of 43-8.5, while Cael Rapp (38-5) came in third, the discus with a throw of 132-5, with Peter Brubaker (126-8) in third, and was second in the javelin with a 156-1 while Nicholas Ketner (164-4) took first.
Walker won the triple jump with a 39-8.5 followed by Brubaker (36-6.5), and Adam Hawbaker (35-10.25), while Jarred Ford cleared 11-0 to win the pole vault with Davon Brantley (10-6), and Jacob Steck (9-0) finishing 2-3.
Also placing for the boys were Callazo (11.6) and Walker (11.6) in the 100, Stainecker (24.0), and Arntz (24.1) in the 200, Payton Luft (18-3) in the long jump, and Woods (5-8) placing second in the high jump.
Donegal Baseball Wins Three Straight Games April 24, 2017
Struggling to find wins this season it seems as if maybe the Donegal baseball team is starting to turn the corner after they recorded three victories last week and held the lead against Manheim Township before weather intervened in the form of a rain postponement.
With a 3-2 win over Cedar Crest, a 4-1 victory over Hempfield and an 11-4 pasting of West Perry, the Indians improved to 3-5 and a fourth place standing in Section Two.
Dawson Magar pitched five and two thirds innings of two-hit baseball against Cedar Crest surrendering two runs while striking out six for the win while Kobe Bistline came on in relief and earned the save.
Tanner Kohler's fielder's choice single in the first put Donegal ahead early but it was a RBI double by Seiler Edwards and a RBI single by Patrick Beaudoin in the fourth inning that broke a 1-1 tie and put the Indians ahead for good.
Donegal racked up 12 hits against Hempfield while Kyle Hess got the win as he gave up one run on two hits over five innings.
His RBI triple in the fourth broke a 1-1 tie and Kohler followed later with another fielder's choice RBI for insurance. Drew Bechtold (3-4, 2 RBI) led at the plate and accounted for Donegal's final run in the seventh with a RBI single.
After falling behind 1-0 in the first against West Perry, Donegal scored seven runs over the next four innings before allowing another run in the fifth. They tacked on four more before the game ended.
Cameron Ellis earned the win for Donegal throwing five innings of four-hit ball, giving up two runs and striking out three.
Dale Houser (2-3, 3RBI) led offensively for Donegal followed by Magar (2-3, 1RBI), Beaudoin (1-2, 2RBI), and Matt Wallace (1-1, 2RBI).
Only one game separated Donegal (8-1) and Lampeter-Strasburg (9-0) after last week's games. The Indians' lone League blemish was against L-S earlier in the season in what has become a classic rivalry between two top-tier programs.
Controlling what they can by winning, the ladies added four more victories with a 25-0 win over Lebanon Catholic, a 9-0 victory over Elizabethtown, a 7-1 win against Annville-Cleona, and a 15-0 drubbing of Lancaster Mennonite.
Donegal put up 20 runs in the second inning against Lebanon Catholic after a five-run first as Sierra Neiss earned the win in the run shortened game.
Makyla Yoder threw a perfect game against Elizabethtown while the ladies scored nine runs on nine hits to beat the Bears. Morgan Biesecker went 2-4 with 3RBI including a double while Kaitlyn Witmer was 2-4 with 2RBI and a double and Yoder was 3-4 with 2RBI.
Annville-Cleona provided Donegal with its toughest challenge of the week pulling to within one run in the fifth with the score 2-1 before the Donegal offense opened up for a five-run sixth inning to put the game away.
Yoder, who got the start and pitched five innings giving up one run on four hits, went 3-4 with two doubles and 3 RBI. Neiss came on in relief in the sixth inning and recorded the save.
Biesecker (1-4, 2RBI) hit two doubles and Grace Miller (2-4, 1RBI) helped lead the offensive charge.
Scoring five runs in the first inning, three in the second and seven in the third against Lancaster Mennonite while Yoder held the Blazers to only one hit, the Indians forced another mercy rule ending to finish out the week.
Kaitlyn Witmer torched the visitors at the plate going 3-3 with a double and 3RBI while Miller (1-1, 2RBI), and Rachel Overlander (1-1, 2RBI, double) added to the offensive output.
ELCO visited Donegal's hard courts last Tuesday and left with a 6-1 victory in the Indian's only match of the week. The lone win came from Jarett Herr who downed Dawson Smith 7-5, 6-2 in singles play.
Continuing their impressive start to the season, both of Donegal's track teams ran their records to 4-0 last week with victories over Lancaster Catholic at home on Tuesday. Both dominated as the boys came away with a 109-40 victory and the girls secured a 117-32 win over the Crusaders.
While the girls' record setting streak came to an end they still had a strong showing, winning all but four events while sweeping the throws.
Spearheading Donegal's attack, Alice Fernald scored victories in the 400 (59.3) and the 200 (26.6), and ran the second leg of a winning 50.0 effort in the 400 relay along with Kalee Fahndrich, Taylor Nissly, and Ashley Maxwell. She also placed third in the 100 (13.5).
The team of Olivia Lechene, McKenzie Dubusky, Megan Myers, and Ella DeBruin completed the second victory of the day in the relays by running a 13:18.8 to capture first in the 3200 as well.
Donegal benefitted both on the track and in the field from an array of athletes scoring victories, some of whom also placed in other events as well, adding to the Indians' points total.
Erin Slattery won the high hurdles in 17.2 and placed second in the 300 hurdles (50.9), and Seneca Straub placed first in the 1600 (5:51.5) as well as second in the 800 (2:40.4).
In the field events Jaden Droege won the long jump with a 15-0 and placed second in the pole vault by clearing 7-0, Alyssa McNece won the javelin with a throw of 112-6 while coming in third in the high jump with a 4-2, and Aliza Johns secured first place in the discus with a throw of 85-9 and was third in the shot put (30-0).
In other events, Nissly won the 100 in 12.6 while Fahndrich was second (13.4) and Anna Hawbaker took first in the 3200 (15:00.5) while Erika Schell placed second in 15:29.8. Fahndrich came in second in the 200 as well with a time of 28 seconds flat.
Lauren Becker won the high jump by clearing 4-4 which was only two inches above Carly Diffenderfer's second place effort of 4-2. Diffenderfer also garnered two more second place finishes on the day with a 14-11 in the long jump and triple jump distance of 29-11.75, the latter of which was followed by Hannah Lloyd's third place jump of 28-9.5.
Finishing out the jumps, Janell Brinser was victorious in the pole vault clearing 7-6, while Hayley Grosh's 6-0 was enough to take third.
Completing Donegal's sweep in the throwing events, Rosalind Staie won the shot put with a toss of 34-5 ahead of Jamilyn Nimo who placed second with a 32-3.5 and also was second in the discus (85-3).
Other place winners included Dubosky and Myers who finished second and third in the 1600 with respective times of 6:11.5 and 6:12.5, Hannah McNece who took second in the javelin (96-2), Alexandria Daly who was third in the 300 hurdles (56.4), and DeBruin who was third in the 800 (2:46.8).
Following much of the same pattern the boys also conceded only four events but were strongest in the field where the long jump stood as the only event they did not win.
Utilizing a strong team effort in which 11 different athletes garnered wins, Keeryen Stevens stood as the lone multiple race winner in the individuals with a 16.4 in the high hurdles and 44.2 in the 300 hurdles.
In the relays the boys won two out of three with Cody Canterbury, Dylan Zuch, Ian Rineer and Keith Atayde taking the 3200 (9:27.5), while the team of Cameron Arntz, Jared Collazo, Tyler Rupp, and Avery Walker won the 400 in 3:43.2.
Walker and Arntz also comprised half of a quartet of Indians that were winners who placed in other events as well. Walker won the triple jump with a 38-5.5 while taking second in the 100 (11.9) and third in the 200 (24.7), and Arntz was first in the 200 (24.5), and placed third in the 400 (55.8).
Calvin Woods, however, scored the most points of anybody on the day by clearing a winning height of 5-6 in the high jump after placing second in both the hurdles with a time of 17.0 in the 100 and a 44.9 in the 300 for a total of 11 team points.
Brooks Bear represented the fourth member of the group by winning the shot put with a 43-1.75 and taking second in the javelin with a 155-5.
Other race winners included Collazo in the 100 (11.9), Ryan Stainecker in the 400 (53.7), and Zuch in the 3200 (11:07.1) who was followed in second by Aran Mullen with a time of 11:39.8.
Representing the remaining three event winners were Jarred Ford in the pole vault whose height of 11-6 was two feet higher than teammate Jacob Steck who placed second with a 9-6, Nicholas Ketner in the javelin (158-5), and Peter Brubaker in the discus (112-7). He was followed by Mason Sauder in second place with a 110-2.
Payton Luft placed second in two events as his distance of 18-1.5 in the long jump edged teammate Adam Hawbaker who finished third with a 17-8.75, and his 36-4 in the triple jump followed Walker's first place effort.
Other place winners included Canterbury who took second in the 1600 (4:56.7), Silas Buckwalter who was second in the 800 (2:01.2), and Rupp who finished second in the 200 with a 24.7.
Donegal Softballers Post Four-Win Week April 17, 2017
Donegal's softball team kept the wins coming last week as they went 4-0 in keeping pace with Lampeter-Strasburg (6-0) at the top of Section Three. With only one league loss coming at the hands of the Pioneers, Donegal (5-1) can only control what they do in the chase for the section crown.
They did just that with a close 1-0 win over Northern Lebanon and dominating victories over Dover 19-1, ELCO 15-0, and Lancaster Catholic 11-0.
Mikyla Yoder pitched a one-hit gem against the Vikings last Monday while the Indians managed only two of their own in a game that was decided in the first inning when the ladies put one on the board and rode it through to the end.
Yoder struck out 13 and only walked two while teaming with Savanna Kolenda at the plate as they both went 1-3 to lead the team.
Sierra Neiss got the start against Dover and made the most of it with a two hit showing in which she had one unearned run and struck out four over five innings.
After taking a 1-0 lead in the first inning, Donegal tacked on three more in the third before Dover made it 4-1 in the bottom half of the inning. A nine-run fourth inning followed by six more in the fifth put to rest any fears of a Dover comeback attempt as the ladies forced the 10-run rule.
Kaitlyn Witmer led Donegal at the plate as she went 3-4 with 3RBI including a double followed by Kolenda (2-3, 3RBI), Peighton Hornick (2-5, 3RBI), Neiss (2-5, 1RBI), Shaianne Boyer (2-2, 2RBI), Yoder (1-3, 3RBI), and Rachel Overlander (1-4, 1RBI).
Wednesday's contest with ELCO was even shorter as Donegal put up nine runs in the first, four in the second, and two in the third while keeping the Raiders off the board in another run shortened game.
Grace Miller (2-2), Emily Graham (1-2), and Neiss (3-3) all drove in two runs apiece, while Kolenda (3-3), Morgan Biesecker (1-3), Witmer (1-3), and Yoder (1-3) all had 1RBI each.
Yoder started and struck out six of the 11 batters she faced while walking none and giving up two hits.
Against Lancaster Catholic, the Indians racked up 13 hits while Yoder only surrendered three with six strikeouts over five innings.
Donegal took an early 2-0 lead in the first inning on a two-run double by Witmer and then exploded for six runs in the third sparked by Yoder's RBI triple to right field. Two more in the fourth and one in the fifth sealed the victory for the visiting Indians.
It has been a struggle for the Indians to find a way to win so far this season and after last week's slate of games they found themselves in fifth place in Section Three with a 1-4 record. Donegal lost 9-6 against Elizabethtown, 8-7 against Ephrata, and 9-5 to McCaskey, but were in each game and had opportunities to pull off the victory.
After Elizabethtown took an early 1-0 lead in the first inning, the Indians came back strong, scoring five unanswered runs over the second and third innings, but surrendered two in the sixth and six in the seventh.
Dawson Magar got the start for Donegal and threw six and a third innings giving up four runs on seven hits while striking out five before losing pitcher Ryan Buckius came on in relief.
The Indians tied the game in the second inning when Drew Bechtold (2-4, 4RBI) hit a line drive to left field with one out and scored Seiler Edwards from second and eventually took the lead on Tanner Kohler's two-run single to center field.
In the third it was Bechtold coming through again with a bases loaded single to right field which scored Edwards and pinch runner Elijah Myers to make it 5-1, but the Bears tied the game in the seventh and took the lead for good off of Buckius.
On Wednesday, even though the Indians out hit Ephrata 10-4, they could not hold off the Mounts and gave up the come-from-behind victory.
Updegraff ( 1-4, 1RBI) put Donegal on the board in the first inning when he singled home Dale Houser (2-3) from second for the 1-0 lead. Ephrata tied the game in the second off of starting pitcher Brady Steinman but three more Donegal runs in the third made it 4-1 in the Indians' favor.
Ephrata again tied the game by scoring three times in the bottom of the inning before Kohler's two-run single in the fourth put Donegal ahead yet again. Kohler (2-5, 2RBI) then scored on Patrick Beaudoin's (1-4, 1RBI) single to center field giving Donegal the 7-4 lead, but it was the final run Donegal scored.
Ephrata scored once more in the fifth and added three more in the bottom of the sixth for the win.
Against McCaskey, the Indians were playing catch-up the entire game beginning in the first inning when they gave up two runs to the home team. Donegal answered in the second with a run but surrendered three more in the bottom of the inning.
After putting up two in the third, the Indians watched McCaskey once again widen the gap to 7-3 in the bottom half but closed it with two of their own in the fourth to make it 7-5 before giving up two more in the sixth for the final score.
Continuing their excellent start to the season, both the boys' and girls' track teams ran their record to 3-0 last week with a 105-45 win over ELCO for the boys, and a 90-60 win for the girls.
Silas Buckwalter and Brooks Bear each scored two wins as Buckwalter won the 1600 in 4:50, as well as the 800 with a time of 2:11.4 and Bear took care of business in the throws with a shot put win of 46-5.75, as well as a discus throw of 124-8.
They also swept the relays as Cody Canterbury, Keith Atayde, Ryan Zuch, and Buckwalter won the 3200 in 8:51.6, Cameron Arntz, Jared Collazo, Tyler Rupp, and Avery Walker won the 400 in 46.0, and Keeryen Stevens, Calvin Woods, Rupp, and Walker took the 1600 (3:47.5).
The only running events Donegal did not win were the 300 hurdles and the 3200 as Stevens won the high hurdles in 16.8, Collazo won the 100 in 11.7, Ryan Stainecker won the 400 in 54.2, and Arntz took the 200 in 24.6.
Meanwhile the boys split the jumping events with ELCO as Woods cleared 5-8 in the high jump and Jarred Ford won the pole vault by clearing 11-6.
Other Indians that placed included Woods who took third in both the high hurdles (17.0) and the 300 hurdles (44.9), Walker was second in the 100 (11.7) and the triple jump (40-5.5), Rupp was third in the 100 (11.7) and second in the 200 (24.7), Atayde was second in the 1600 (4:56) as well as the 800 (2:12.2), Aedan Wilkinson was third in the 400 (57.0), Stevens was second in the 300 hurdles (44.4), Canterbury was third in the 800 (2:13.3), Stainecker was third in the 200 (24.8), Zuch was second in the 3200 (11:32.6), Payton Luft was third in the long jump (18-5.75), Adam Hawbaker was third in the triple jump (37-2), Andrew Stwalley was third in the high jump (5-2), Davon Brantley was third in the pole vault (9-6), Nicholas Ketner was second in the javelin (167-5) ahead of Bear who finished third with a 162-9, Nathan Brubaker was third in the shot put (38-2.5), and Cael Rapp finished third in the discus with a 105-7.
It was another record breaking week for the girls as well as Taylor Nissly, Ashley Maxwell, Alice Fernald, and Kaylee Fahndrich bested their own school record in the 400 relay with a time of 50.2, and Nissly broke her own school record in the 200 with a time of 25.7.
Nissly also won the 100 in 12.7 and joined Erin Slattery as the only two multiple event winners for the girls. Slattery was first in the high hurdles with a 17.5, and the 300 hurdles with a 51.0
Seneca Straub, Nissly, Maxwell, and Caroline Goodwill turned in the winning time of 4:23 in the 1600 as the ladies also won two of the three relays.
Other winners for Donegal included Fernald (59.5) in the 400, Carly Diffenderfer (30-3.5) in the triple jump, Lauren Becker (4-6) in the high jump, and Alyssa McNece (111-5) in the javelin.
Placing for the Indians were Kalee Fahndrich who was second in the 100 (13.0) ahead of Fernald (13.1), who also was second in the 200 (27.0), Straub who was second in the 1600 (6:090.3) as well as the 800 (2:43.5), Miranda Nagle who was third in the 1600 (6:18.3) and second in the 3200 (13:48.9), Aliza Young who was third in the 400 (66.4), Lauren Redcay who was third in the 300 hurdles (55.5), Megan Myers who was third in the 3200 (14:10.4), Diffenderfer who was second in the long jump (14-4.5), Hannah Lloyd who was third in the triple jump (28-10.5), McNece who was third in the high jump (4-6) as well as second in the javelin (108-9), Jaiden Droege who was third in the pole vault (6-6), Hannah McNece who was second in the javelin (108-9), Rosalind Staie who was third in the javelin (75-8) and second in the shot put (35-9.5), Jamilyn Nimo who was third in the shot put (33-0), Aliza Johns who was second in the discus (91.5) and Chrysten Hynes who was third in the discus (82-111).
The boys had a strong start to the week with 7-0 wins over Northern Lebanon and Octorara, but ended with two losses, a 7-0 defeat at the hands of Cocalico and a 3-2 loss to Reading.
Donegal dominated the Vikings on Monday as Northern Lebanon only won five total games on the day. Andrew Ashley and Aaron Stehman won 8-0, Mark Pickle and Joseph Johns pulled off an 8-4 victory, and Jarrett Herr and Noah Hoffmaster won 8-0 to wrap up the doubles, while in singles it was Ashley 6-0, 6-0, Stehman 6-1, 6-0, Herr 6-0, 6-0, and Hoffmaster 6-0, 6-0.
Against Octorara it was a little bit more competitive, but still a walk through for the Indians as Ashley and Stehman won 8-1, Herr and Hoffmaster won in tiebreaker 9-8 (2), and Aaron Rugh and Austin Hollinger won 8-2. In singles it was Ashley 6-3, 6-4, Stehman 6-2, 6-2, Hoffmaster 7-5, 6-4, and Herr 6-1, 6-0.
Donegal's tightest match of the week unfortunately ended in a loss, but it was a close one. Reading swept the doubles play, but Ashley and Stehman both won in straight sets with identical 6-0 scores.
Donegal Track Teams Dominate Blazers April 10, 2017
Donegal's track and field teams have hit the ground running this season jumping out to impressive 2-0 starts that have them both sitting in first place in Section Three.
Last week proved to be another dominant showing for the Indians as they traveled to Lancaster Mennonite with the boys emerging victorious, 104-46 and the girls coming out on top as well, 120-30.
To put the icing on the cake, two records fell by the wayside as Taylor Nissly, Alice Fernald, Ashley Maxwell, and Kaylee Fahndrich's time of 50.6 in the 400 relay set a new school record and Ryan Stainecker set a new freshman record in the 400 with a time of 53.4 seconds.
While the boys controlled the entire meet, only two athletes won multiple events as Silas Buckwalter took first in the 1600 with a time of 4:49 as well as the 800, clocking in at 2:11.2, and Brooks Bear took the shot put with a toss of 46-6 and the discus with a throw of 134-1.
Bear's showing also led a clean sweep in the throws by the Indians as Nicholas Ketner (149-111), Bear (139-11), and Zecheriah Stiver (126-7) finished respectively in the javelin, while Cael Rapp (36-10), and Mason Sauder (36-2) finished second and third in the shot put and then swapped positions in the discus with respective throws of 112-4 and 106-6.
Likewise, Buckwalter's finish in the 800 was followed by Keith Atayde in second place with a time of 2:12.9, and Cody Canterbury in third with a 2:13.5. Other race sweeps included both the hurdles with Keeryen Stevens winning the high hurdles in 17.10, Calvin Woods (18.0) taking second, and Aedan Wilkinson (21.0) placing third, while in the 300 it was Woods (45.6), Stevens (46.0), and Wilkinson (47.4).
Meanwhile in the pole vault it was Jarred Ford (11-0), Davon Brantley (10-0), and Gabriel Hawley (8-6) scoring for the Indians.
Canterbury, Atayde, Dylan Zuch, and Buckwalter teamed up to win the 3200 relay in 8:52.9, while Stevens, Woods, Tyler Rupp, and Avery Walker took first in the 1600 relay with a time of 3:48.2, and Walker won the triple jump with a distance of 38-10.5
Rupp also placed third in the 100 with a time of 12.0, and second in the 200 in 24.2, Atayde (4:53.0) took third in the 1600, Cameron Arntz (56.0) finished third in the 400, Zuch (10:57.9) was third in the 3200, Payton Luft (17-2) and Joseph Schillizzi (16-8.75) finished second and third in the long jump, Adam Hawbaker (36-6.5) was third in the triple jump, and Woods (5-6) and Shane Buhrman (5-4) were second and third in the high jump.
For the girls it was much of the same as the Blazers were easily outscored by the lady Indians in every aspect of the meet.
Three girls won multiple events as Erin Slattery was first in the 100 hurdles with a time of 17.6 and the 300 hurdles with a 53.6. Taylor Nissly won the 100 in 12.6 and the 200 in 25.9, and Carly Diffenderfer took first in the long jump with a distance of 14-0 and the triple jump with a 28-11.
Five events were swept by the girls as Hannah Lloyd (21.0), and Alexandra Daly (21.2) joined Slattery in the 100 hurdles, Seneca Straub (6:11.4), Miranda Nagle (6:14.5), and Megan Myers (6:16.5) took the 1600, Caroline Goodwill (1:05.4), Nissly (1:08.2), and Maxwell (1:09.5) took the 400, Jaiden Droege (13-5), and Daly (11-9.5) joined Diffenderfer in the long jump and Lauren Becker (4-6), and Alyssa McNece (4-4) took the high jump.
Other winners included Janell Brinser in the pole vault clearing 7-6, Hannah McNece in the javelin with a throw of 98-5, Rosalind Staie in the shot put with a toss of 31-11.5, and Aliza Young, Slattery, Lauren Redcay, and Fernald in the 1600 relay with a time of 4:17.9
Also, Fahndrich (13.2) took second in the 100, Daly (57.4) was second in the 300 hurdles, Straub (2:40.08) was third in the 800, Fernald (26.7) was second in the 200, Nagle ( 13:55.9) and McKenzie Dubusky (15:00.9) were second and third in the 3200, Lloyd (27-4.25) was second in the triple jump, Droege (6-6) was second in the pole vault, Alyssa McNece (96-4) was second in the javelin, Aliza Johns was second in the shot put with a 28-3.5 as well as the discus with a 79-1, with Chrysten Hynes (77-9) taking third.
Wins have been hard to come by for a very young tennis team this year, but they have shown promise for the future and a willingness to learn along the way. Last week the boys' team went 0-3 with a 7-0 loss to Lancaster Mennonite, a close 4-3 defeat at home against Lancaster Catholic, and a 5-2 decision in favor of Pequea Valley.
Signs of that fighting spirit were evident on the court against the Crusaders on Tuesday as the boys dropped a closely contested match in which they were 2-1 in doubles play, but went 1-3 in singles.
Aaron Rugh and Austin Hollinger put away Matthew Idoeta and Peter Bilson 8-4 while Andrew Ashley and Aaron Stehman edged Mark Cannon and Danny Bomberger 9-8. Jarrett Herr and Noah Hoffmaster, meanwhile, just barely lost a 9-7 heartbreaker against G. Otto and A. Aichele
In singles, Herr went to a tiebreaker against Idoeta and emerged with a 6-0, 2-6, 10-5 win and Stehman lost another heartbreaking match in a tiebreak with a score of 2-6, 6-2, and 10-3.
Donegal only won two matches against Pequea Valley as Ashley and Stehman put away M. Glick and Garret Elmer 8-2, and Ashley defeated Glick 6-3, 6-3. However, Herr (3-6, 6-2, 8) and Stehman (7-5, 0-6, 7) both put up a hard fight in matches that could have easily gone either way.
Last week proved to be a tough one on the diamond for the Indians as they were able to pick up a 6-4 win over Conestoga Valley, but then lost 3-1 to Solanco and 7-4 to Lampeter-Strasburg.
Brady Steinman started the game for Donegal going five and one third innings giving up four runs on six hits, but he did not get the win as he gave the mound to Ryan Buckius after surrendering the tying run with one out in the fifth inning.
Buckius, who struck out two and gave up two hits but no runs, benefitted in the bottom of the sixth from an error that allowed Drew Bechtold to reach first, and two passed balls that eventually landed Bechtold on third and Kyle Hess on second with one out.
Seiler Edwards then hit a hard ground up the middle and into center field which scored both Bechtold and Hess with the eventual game winning runs.
Connor Updegraff (2-4, 2RBI) and Cameron Ellis (1-3, 2RBI) combined for a four run third inning for Donegal which erased an earlier 2-0 CV advantage.
In a close game against Solanco, it was run production on the part of the Mules that was the deciding factor in a game where Donegal out hit them 6-5.
Solanco scored twice in the fourth to break a scoreless tie and answered Hess's solo home run in the fifth with one more run to seal the victory.
Dawson Magar took the loss for the Indians going six innings and giving up three runs on five hits while recording four strikeouts.
On Friday L-S built a 6-0 lead over the first three innings and then held off any hopes of a Donegal comeback after the Indians put up four in the bottom of the third to make it 6-4 by scoring once more in the fourth.
Donegal was held to only two hits, one apiece by Magar and Houser, while Steinman in his start for the Indians, gave up four runs on two hits before giving the ball to Buckius who surrendered three runs on one hit before Kobe Bistline took over in the sixth and threw two innings of hitless baseball.
After a close 3-1 loss to Lampeter-Strasburg last Monday the Indians settled in and recorded back-to-back shutouts with identical 10-0 results over Cocalico and Manheim Central.
Makyla Yoder and the Donegal defense held the Pioneers scoreless through three innings before L-S was able to put a run across in the fourth to tie the game at 1-1 and then scored twice in the fifth to take the lead for good.
Donegal only managed three hits on the day with Kaitlyn Witmer going 2-3 and Savanna Kolenda going 1-3, both of those coming in the first inning.
In a much different outcome, the lady Indians pounded out 13 hits against Cocalico scoring in all but the third inning before the 10-run rule was invoked while Yoder, who went four innings with only one hit surrendered, combined with Sierra Neiss to hold the Eagles to only two on the day.
Rachel Robinson went 3-3 with 3RBI and three doubles to lead the Indians. Witmer (2-2, 2RB) tripled and singled and Morgan Biesecker (2-4, 2RBI) doubled and singled to help secure the win. Yoder, Mckenna Berg, and Cheyenne Klinedinst each had one RBI apiece.
Yoder went five full innings against Manheim in another run shortened affair only giving up two hits and striking out five while the Barons were lit up for 10 runs on 11 hits.
Witmer had another big day at the plate going 2-3 with 2RBI and a double while Grace Miller had a RBI triple going 1-2.
Indian Baseball Posts Mixed Results April 3, 2017
A rainy end to March created mayhem with the start of the spring sports season and caused many of last week's baseball games to be postponed, including a Saturday matchup between Donegal and West Perry.
Fortunately, the Indians were not affected too much and were able to get two games in before the bad weather hit. On Monday they played Daniel Boone at home in a 6-2 loss but came back later in the week and earned a 7-0 shutout over Eastern York on Thursday.
In a closely contested matchup, Daniel Boone used a huge six-run seventh inning which included a home run by Brendan Rivoli to break a 2-2 tie and come away with the victory.
Brady Steinmann got the start for Donegal and surrendered only two runs on three hits over six innings of play with two strikeouts and two walks. Things got interesting, however, when the Blazers were able to get to reliever Kyle Hess in the top of the seventh and used two hits and three walks to record six runs.
After Daniel Boone scored in the top of the first inning, the Indians answered with a run of their own. A run in the second put the Blazers up 2-1 until Donegal tied the game again in the bottom of the sixth.
Hess had a productive day at the plate going 2-3 with a run scored along with Drew Bechtold who was 1-2 with a run batted in.
Needing something to wash the bad taste from their mouths, the Indians took it to the Golden Knights on Thursday as they built a 7-0 lead over four innings and used a two-hit effort by pitcher Dawson Magar to shut things down.
Magar struck out nine and walked two over six complete innings of play before Brandon Buckius came on in relief and struck out the side to end the game.
Led by Patrick Beaudoin and Dale Houser, who both went 2-3 with a double and 2 RBI, Donegal scored two early runs in the first and added another in the third before tacking on four more in the fourth for the victory.
Getting the first win of the season is not always easy and can be extremely nerve wracking but that was not the case for Donegal's boys' and girls' track teams. In last week's meet with Northern Lebanon a lack of athletes provided the Indians with what will probably be their easiest win of the season as the boys prevailed 130-20 and the girls took a 136-14 victory.
Donegal's boys were winners in each event while Keeryen Stevens, Tyler Rupp, and Silas Buckwalter all won two events on the track and Brooks Bear doubled up to win the discus with a throw of 137', and the shot put with a toss of 46-2.
Stevens earned his wins in the hurdles with times of 17.86 in the 110 and 45.23 in the 300, while Rupp took the 100 in 11.97 and the 200 in 24.99 and Buckwalter wrapped up the 1600 in 4:48.09 and the 800 with a time of 2:13.13.
Rounding out the individual races, Ryan Stalnecker won the 400 with a time of 54.18, and Dylan Zuch took the 3200 in 10:58.57, while in the relays the boys took the 3200 in 9:16.89, the 400 in 46.49, and the 1600 in 3:49.26.
In the final events Calvin Woods won the high jump with an 5-6, Payton Luft took the long jump with an 18-2, Avery Walker went 38-7 in the triple jump, Jarred Ford won the pole vault with an 11-6, and Nicholas Ketner threw the javelin a distance of 147-7.
In similar fashion, the girls also won every event with three runners doubling up as Erin Slattery won the 100 hurdles in 17.92 as well as the 300 hurdles in 53.65, Taylor Latisha Nissly won the 100 with a time of 13.08 and the 200 with a 26.58, and Megan Myers won the 1600 in 6:20.56 as well as the 3200 in 14:00.47. Likewise, Jaiden Droege won the long jump with a 15-1 and the pole vault by clearing 7-0.
In the relays the ladies won the 3200 with a time of 11:59.59, the 400 with a time of 52.81, and the 1600 in 4:22.51, and to finish out the individual races, Alice Fernald won the 400 with a time of 1:01.05 and Ella DeBruin took the 800 in 2:46.39.
Rounding things out, Lauren Becker took the high jump by clearing 4-6, Carly Diffenderfer won the triple jump with a 29-11.25, Alyssa McNece took the javelin with a 104-8, Jamilyn Nimo won the discus with a throw of 88-8, and Rosalind Staie won the shot put with a toss of 31-6.25.
With rain washing out a lot of last week's contests the Donegal boys' tennis team was only able to get in two matches instead of three.
Thursday's match with Octorara tried to play out, but with the number one doubles team of Andrew Ashley and Aaron Stehman leading 6-3 after the first set the skies opened up and play was stopped.
Unfortunately, Ashley and Stehman had just staged a comeback after falling behind 2-1 and were playing with plenty of momentum, but will now have to wait a little bit longer to re-establish it.
On Monday the Indians faced off against L-S, but dropped a 6-1 decision on the road and then took on Manheim Central on Thursday where they again lost, 7-0.
Last Wednesday marked the only day of play for the lady Indians as they too were rained out on Friday against Elizabethtown. Donegal faced off against Twin Valley in a non-league contest and despite a valiant attempt at a comeback, fell 8-4.
Twin Valley seemed to have an answer to anything the Indians threw at them, retaking the lead after Donegal erased a two run first inning lead by the visitors and then shutting the door in the seventh with three more runs after the Indians pulled back to within one in the fourth on a two-run blast by Rachel Robinson.
Already down by two runs in the first, Peighton Hornick hit a double to left field and then scored on a two out single by Kaitlyn Witmer to shorten the lead to one heading into the second.
Robinson, who went 2-4 on the day with 3 RBI, singled home Mckenna Berg with two outs in the second to tie the game, but Twin Valley seemed to have the number on senior ace Makyla Yoder and put up three more runs in the third to make it 5-2.
Yoder, who gave up nine hits over seven innings while striking out four and walking three, settled into her groove and only surrendered one more hit over the next three innings, but after Robinson's big fourth inning, Donegal couldn't score.
They had an opportunity in the fifth when back-to-back walks loaded the bases for Donegal with only one out, but a strikeout and a fly out to right field ended the threat.
Witmer was 1-4 with an RBI while Graham, who scored on Robinson's home run, went 1-3 with a triple.
Three Donegal Matmen Compete in Districts February 27, 2017
In the world of team sports wrestling is unique in that while 14 wrestlers compete for team points, each one of them is also compiling an individual record and working towards personal as well as team goals simultaneously.
Teams have Section, League, District, and State titles as do the wrestlers themselves and in the end, the ultimate goal is to achieve PIAA hardware.
Each wrestler must test his own resolve and reach inside for what is referred to as heart, pushing past physical and mental weaknesses as each level of the postseason becomes more difficult than the previous one. Especially in Pennsylvania where undoubtedly, some of the best wrestlers in the nation take to the mats each season.
It is a grueling process and this year three Donegal wrestlers began the long journey by advancing through sectionals into the District Three AAA tournament which was held this past weekend at Hershey's Giant Center.
Seniors Austin Burkholder and Tyler Snyder were joined by sophomore Keegan McCord last Thursday in the opening round of wrestling with mixed results.
Burkholder made his return to Hershey this year after two consecutive losses eliminated him in his junior year. He began that run by winning a sectional title and claimed second place two weeks ago to complete the first third of the postseason journey.
With District Three moving from the iconic Hersheypark Arena to the Giant Center this year Burkholder was able to wrestle under the bright lights for the first time, which his father Jeff said was a dream fulfilled for the Indian grappler.
Unfortunately, his journey began with another first round loss, this time to Cumberland Valley's Russell Zimmerman via an 11-3 major decision. Burkholder took an early 2-0 lead with a takedown in the first period, but a Zimmerman escape and subsequent takedown in the final 34 seconds put him in the lead for good.
Scoring three second period near fall points and another escape and takedown in the third put Zimmerman up 9-2 before Burkholder earned another point with a late escape, but he succumbed to another takedown which sent him into the consolation bracket.
With a first round loss a wrestler has to win four straight bouts in order to punch a ticket to States where only the top four finishers advance. Burkholder made it through two, but ran into a roadblock on Friday in the form of Josh McLaughlin from Cedar Crest who used an escape and two takedowns in the second period to break a scoreless tie before getting the fall at 3:26.
Leading up to that point Burkholder pinned his way through Thursday night, recording falls over Reading's Elijah Ortega and Governor Mifflin's Kyle Seibert. He was able to put Ortega on his back in the second period of a scoreless bout at the 2:15 mark and his second period takedown of Seibert led to the same result in 2:37. Burkholder ended his season with a record of 30-11.
Snyder's first trip to Hershey was a testament to being prepared for the unexpected. For all intents and purposes his season ended at Sectionals in a fifth place finish with the top four advancing through.
In a surprising turn of events Central Dauphin's Skitch Light, who was the runner up at 160, inexplicably quit the team on the eve of Districts. That opened the door for Snyder to enter as the fourth seed and extend his scholastic career.
Even though he originally missed the cut, the tenacious senior almost completed a come-from-behind victory over Manheim Township's Jose Lao-Cooper that would have guaranteed him a fourth place seed at the least, rendering Light's decision moot.
As it was, Snyder faced off with Dylan Gurreri from Red Lion in a first round bout that unfortunately did not go his way. A takedown and nearfall points completed a four point flurry that put Gurreri ahead 4-0 heading into the second period.
After choosing to start the second in the bottom position, Snyder promptly escaped for one point and the two finished on their feet with Gurreri choosing down to begin the third. His escape with 1:43 remaining on the clock marked the end of scoring for both wrestlers and sent Snyder into the consolations.
In his second bout of the day Snyder took on Exeter's Tyler Borton who hit a takedown late in the first period and turned him for three nearfall points in the second for a 5-0 lead. Snyder's reversal with 42 seconds remaining in the second pulled him to within three, but Borton was able to stand up with only two seconds on the clock to enter the third period ahead by a score of 6-2.
Snyder countered a Borton reversal with an escape and a late takedown to make it 8-5 with 11 seconds in the match, but could not turn him for the nearfall points he needed to send the bout into overtime, instead giving up a reversal in the final second for a 10-5 decision loss.
Donegal's third wrestler was McCord who made a quick exit in last year's sectionals as a freshman, but made a triumphant return in being crowned the champion at 195 to gain his entry into the Giant Center.
He promptly made an impression with a 9-1 major decision victory over West Perry's Jake Quaker in the first round using two first period takedowns to begin the second ahead by a 4-1 score. From there McCord controlled the rest of the match scoring two points on a reversal late in the second and using an escape and a takedown in the third for insurance.
His quarterfinal bout pitted him opposite Ben Fromm of Cocalico, a sixth place finisher in last year's tournament at 220. A penalty point awarded to McCord for locked hands was the only score the Donegal grappler could manage as the bout reached the third period with Fromm leading 4-1 on two takedowns.
In the third, McCord waged a comeback that but for a Fromm reversal would have been successful and catapulted him into the semis. He chose the bottom position and promptly escaped, making it 4-2. After hitting a takedown with 1:17 on the clock and tying the score, Fromm's reversal put him back in the lead with 44 seconds left before McCord was able to reach his feet and pull within one, but Fromm resisted any takedown attempts and ran out the final 26 seconds for the 6-5 victory.
Now needing three consecutive wins in the consolation bracket in order to advance, McCord overcame a 2-0 first period deficit against Reading's Malik Jackson, hitting a reversal and planting him 39 seconds into the second, setting up a Friday night bout with Seth Egolf from Waynesboro.
Egolf took a two point lead off a first period takedown but McCord, working from the bottom position, got away for an escape to make it 2-1 heading into the third. With Egolf choosing bottom, McCord took a stall warning and then gave up the two point reversal with 36 seconds to go. Working for the escape, McCord was caught in a roll and stuck with 18 seconds to go ending his run.
Donegal used a talented combined attack of veteran leadership and a new young gun to battle through a Section Three title chase that ended with the lady Indians in second place behind Lampeter-Strasburg and just ahead of Cocalico in the standings.
A dangerous three headed attack consisting of seniors Rachel Robinson and Carly Diffenderfer and freshman Kiera Baughman led Donegal into the L-L League tournament where a win over McCaskey would have set up a possible rematch with L-S.
Despite a hard effort by the ladies, they were eliminated by the Red Tornado, but had a chance to heal the bumps and bruises while waiting for the District Three tournament to start last week.
They began as the number 12 seed and drew fifth seeded Lower Dauphin in the first round last Tuesday on the road. With L-S and Cocalico playing each other again, Donegal had another opportunity for a rematch, this time with the winner of the Eagles and Pioneers, but first they had to get by the Falcons.
That proved to be a tough task as Lower Dauphin used a stingy defense to shut down both Robinson and Baughman leaving Diffenderfer to pace the Indians with 20 points. Taking out two of the three high scorers, the Falcons built a 17-11 lead and held on for a 44-38 victory.
Amber Schweiger led Lower Dauphin with 15 points while Baughman scored nine and Robinson was held to four. Carly Snyder (3) and Summer Steffy (2) added the remainder for the Indians.
Both teams tallied only eight points in the second quarter, sending them into the break with the Falcons leading 25-19. Donegal failed to find the traction they needed and could only hold on as the two teams both scored 19 points in the second half with Donegal ending its season in the process.
McCord, Burkholder Place in Sectionals February 20, 2017
With a fourth place finish in Section Three and an overall record of 5-3 to finish the season, the Donegal wrestling team, which only graduates three starters, looks poised to begin a climb back into contention.
Saturday marked the beginning of the long road to Hershey as District Three Sectional wrestling was held in a reformatted system. Both AA and AAA now have four sections apiece with Central Dauphin, Lower Dauphin, Milton Hershey and Palmyra now wrestling at Hempfield High School where it was always strictly L-L League schools.
As a result, Conestoga Valley, Cedar Crest, and Ephrata were moved to Berks County Sectionals which are held at Governor Mifflin High School.
While Central Dauphin and Lower Dauphin came in and took first and second place respectively in the team standings, Donegal had a good showing as well finishing in fourth place with 115 points behind third place Solanco at 140 points.
Thirteen Indian wrestlers took part in the District Three qualifier, where the top four wrestlers in each weight class advanced, and walked away with one champion, one runner up, five fifth place finishers and one sixth place finish.
Moving on to the District Three AAA tournament this Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at the Giant Center in Hershey are Keegan McCord, the champion at 195, and Austin Burkholder who took second place at 126.
In the final match at 195, second seeded McCord met up with number one seed Josh Weder from Solanco and used a four point third period to clinch a 5-4 come-from-behind championship.
Weder led 2-1 after scoring a takedown but giving up an escape to McCord late in the first period. An escape in the second by Weder put him ahead 3-1 heading into the third but McCord hit a reversal in the third after choosing the bottom position to tie the score.
Weder immediately escaped for the one-point lead, but McCord scored a takedown 12 seconds later and was able to ride out the clock.
In his journey to first place McCord first decked Jack Eckman from Lampeter-Strasburg at the 1:40 mark of their quarterfinal matchup sending him into the semifinals opposite Elizabethtown's Blake Andrews.
Scoring a take down in the first period and a reversal in the third, McCord was awarded two penalty points for stalling to win 6-0.
With the third seed at 126, Burkholder did not receive a bye and started with a first round matchup against Hempfield's Tyler Buthdy. After giving up an early takedown, it was all Burkholder from that point as he only gave up four escapes through the remainder of the bout while turning Buthdy three times for near fall points in a 21-6 tech fall at 5:45.
A quarterfinal matchup with Solanco's Chase Charles was next for the Donegal senior who scored a first period takedown and reversal in the second before giving up an escape for the 4-1 decision.
In the semifinal bout, Burkholder met up with Josh Myers of Palmyra and the two went 5:58 of scoreless wrestling before a Burkholder escape netted him the 1-0 win and a matchup with number one seeded Jake Cherry from Central Dauphin for the championship. Cherry lived up to his seeding, however, building a 4-0 lead before recording the fall at 2:56.
Seven Indians made it out of the first round with five finishing in fifth place. Two of those fell in the consolation round, Dylan Bowers at 113, and Jarod Brown at 132.
Bowers began with a 6-1 victory over Andy Sikora from Penn Manor, but fell to Elizabethtown's Luke Snyder via a first period fall. In his consolation bout he met up with Warwick's Dylan Butzer and took a 4-4 tie into the third period where he took a 7-6 lead before giving up a five point move with only 27 seconds left on the clock.
Down 4-2 after one period in his first round bout with Ramon Estevez of L-S, Brown earned a third period fall to advance against Colby Kenderdine of Manheim Township but fell victim to a quick pin. Facing Joey Vandergriff from Solanco in his consolation bout, Brown made it into the second period before giving up a fall at 2:50.
Jesse Thomas began his day at 106 with a second period fall over Solanco's Tommy Steinhauer to advance in to the quarterfinals opposite Jacob Vale of Lower Dauphin but suffered a 9-3 decision. In the consolations he earned a 5-2 decision over Grant Whitney of Palmyra, but lost an 8-6 sudden victory heartbreaker to Central Dauphin's Tye Weathersby. In the fifth place match he earned a fall over Ethan Carl of Elizabethtown in 2:43.
Earning a first period fall over Nick Carroll of Palmyra at 120, Davon Brantley then dropped a 5-0 decision to Manheim's Cade Zeamer to drop into the consolations. Once there, he defeated Warwick's Mateo Chacon by a 5-1 decision, but a pin to Nevin Estevez of McCaskey placed him in a rematch with Zeamer which Brantley won 10-4.
Ryan Turner of Palmyra was the first opponent for Tyler Snyder at 160 and the Donegal grappler kept it short and sweet with a fall at 1:23 but his quarterfinal matchup with Hershey's Nyiem Flucas ended in a 10-3 loss. In the consolation round he earned an 11-3 major decision over Manheim's Logan Hess before falling short to MT's Jose Lao-Cooper, 6-4. He then pinned Lower Dauphin's Etwarth Berbal-Noriega in 3:50 after taking an 8-2 lead.
Kyle Bixler got off to a good start at 170 with an 18-3 technical fall over L-S's Johnny Franklin in the third period, but a quarterfinal loss to Solanco's Ben Root via a first period fall dropped him into the consolations where a default win pitted him against Milton Hershey's Nick Grissinger who recorded a first period fall. He then faced off against MT's Carter Hasson but lost by a second period fall.
Wrestling at 220, Cael Rapp's 9-1 major decision over Penn Manor's Kyle Groff moved him into a quarterfinal bout against Kaleb Tucker of Solanco where he succumbed to a second period fall, but recorded his own fall against Hershey's Jacob Gore at the 2:21 mark. He then met up with Justin Lecadre of Milton Hershey who earned a second period fall, setting up a closely contested 6-5 decision victory for Rapp in a rematch with Tucker.
Donegal's final wrestler at 225, Yonnie Harvey, used a first period fall over Manheim's Tyler Dougherty to advance to the quarterfinals where he ran into number one seed and eventual champion Ryan Stewart of Warwick. Harvey took him into the third period, but fell to a 19-4 technical fall. A consolation matchup with Kyler Wuester of Lower Dauphin went Harvey's way in the form of a 9-8 decision, but a 9-2 loss to McCaskey's Julian Sitts sent him into the fifth place match where he came away with a 3-2 victory.
Robinson Joins 1,000 Career Points Club February 13, 2017
Sometimes the easy things are made near impossible by the introduction of pressure. An open net goal in soccer and hockey, or a steal and uncontested layup for the lead in basketball suddenly become the hardest feats to accomplish.
When Rachel Robinson stepped to the foul line last Tuesday night for her fourth point against Lebanon, the game was not on the line, in fact it was still in the first quarter. No pressure at all.
Except that her 1000th career point was in that shot, and as she toed the line she brushed back some hair, gave the ball four bounces and calmly sent it home with a slight kiss off the back of the rim and soon disappeared in a sea of teammates celebrating her accomplishment along with an enthusiastic student section and fan filled gymnasium.
This scene could just have easily been played out last season but for a knee injury that sidelined her not only for her junior basketball season, but kept her out of softball as well.
She is now just the 10th player in Donegal girls' basketball history to claim membership in the 1,000 point club and follows Nicky Hess who reached the milestone eight years ago.
Her 19 points in that game combined with 16 in an L-L League Tournament game against McCaskey on Saturday, in which the Red Tornado bested the Indians 59-51, now gives her a total of 1,035 and with Districts looming on the horizon, it will go even higher.
If anything, Robinson's moment in history supplied a boost of adrenaline to an otherwise lackluster contest, at least on the part of Lebanon. Donegal demolished the Cedars by a score of 71-25.
Lebanon's game total was only two points shy of Donegal's first quarter tally as Kiera Baughman scored 20 points and Carly Diffenderfer matched Robinson's 19 making the trio of Indians the game high scorers.
Carly Snyder and Cheyenne Livelsberger each had five apiece and Alice Fernald added three in a game that saw Donegal leading 43-12 at the half and 60-15 by the fourth quarter.
Baughman continued her sharpshooting ways, draining two from beyond the arc and was a perfect 2-2 at the line as were her two partners in crime with Robinson going 5-5 while Diffenderfer was 4-4.
Along with Robinson's accomplishment, the game held another meaning as Donegal was in third place in Section Three, with Lampeter-Strasburg in first and Cocalico in second and the two facing off against each other with the seeding for the League tournament in the balance.
If L-S lost, they would be in second place, tied with Cocalico, and Donegal would face Lebanon Catholic in a play in game. If Cocalico lost, they would be tied with Donegal and the Indians would hold the tie-breaker and face McCaskey in the first round of tournament play.
All of this was contingent upon Donegal beating Lebanon, which at 0-13 was not deemed a threat at all. The second scenario played out to Donegal's favor and they got a few days rest before matching up with the Red Tornado on Saturday.
Earlier in the season, Donegal beat McCaskey 65-54 and revenge was on the Red Tornado minds as they took to the court at Penn Manor, especially Ahnera Parker who lit up the Indian defense for a game high 31 points.
That performance was enough to overcome the output by Diffenderfer (18), Robinson (16), and Baughman (11) and eliminating the Indians from the tournament. Fernald added three, all from the foul line, and Livelsberger added three.
A solid 20 point second quarter from Donegal made up the difference from a sloppy five point first and a Diffenderfer rebound and put-back at the buzzer put the Indians back in the game with a 25-23 halftime lead.
Near the mid-point of the fourth quarter, Diffenderfer notched seven unanswered points, putting the lead back in the hands of the Indians, but Parker took over and after she stepped to the line to finish a three point play, McCaskey was ahead again, this time for good.
Avery Walker scored a game high 24 points against Elizabethtown last Tuesday, but it was not enough to stop the Bears from completing a 74-67 come from behind victory last Tuesday against the Donegal boys on their home court.
Larry Locker led the Bears with 23 and helped them to overcome a 37-35 halftime deficit after Donegal opened the game by outscoring Elizabethtown 21-18 in the first quarter. That lead slipped away in the third when the Bears went ahead 40-39 and then ran away with the game in the fourth.
Michael Lyons scored 16 for Donegal while Omar Ibrahim added 12, Payton Luft scored eight, Wyatt Schlaybach put up four and Frank Devitz netted three to round out the scoring.
In its final match before Sectionals begin this coming Saturday, Donegal faced Manheim Township in a non-league showdown on Wednesday in Mount Joy. With the help of six forfeits courtesy of the Blue Streaks, the Indians won 48-24.
Donegal started off in a 9-0 hole after a decision loss at 170 was followed by giving up a forfeit at 182.
Keegan McCord took to the mat next at 195 and earned a 5-2 decision over Myles Desha before a string of four forfeits combined to make it 27-9 in Donegal's favor.
Then Davon Brantley faced Malcom Schuyler at 120 and went the distance to get the 7-4 decision to make it 30-9. Manheim Township then sandwiched two pins around an Austin Burkholder forfeit to close the gap to 36-21.
A Dimitri Gonzales pin at 145 and a forfeit at 152 took the match to 48-21 in Donegal's favor before Jose Lao-Cooper's pin at 160 finalized things.
While Donegal does not have a school supported swim team, they do have a few students who swim for the school as Non-School Swimmers. As such, they can still qualify for the post-season by participating in PIAA sanctioned meets and meeting the qualifying times for the events they wish to participate in.
In last week's Lancaster-Lebanon League swim meet, four girls and three boys represented Donegal. Jenna Park won a gold medal in the 50 freestyle with a winning time of 24.16. She also swam to an eighth place finish in the 100 freestyle, finishing in 54.89. Erika Schell joined Park in the 50 and finished in 18th place with a time of 26.62
Grace Wheller notched an eighth place finish in the 200 freestyle with a time of 2:06.28, while teammate Hailey Fry came in 26th in 2:14.70.
Fry was also 16th in the 100 breaststroke finishing in 1:16.11 and Wheller took 11th in the 500 freestyle with a time of 5:48.91.
For the guys, Tyler Wilkinson finished ninth in the 200 freestyle with a time of 1:53.8, and also swam a 58.51 in the 100 backstroke for a seventh place finish. Nick Aboelenin followed Wilkinson in the backstroke with a 16th place time of 1:01.97 and Jacob Houck took 12th in the 100 butterfly with a time of 57.00.
Based on the criteria required by the PIAA, four of Donegal's swimmers should qualify for the District Three meet to be held March 3-4 at Cumberland Valley High School.
Wheller would swim in the 200 freestyle, Park in the 50 freestyle and the 100 freestyle, Wilkinson in the 200 free and the 100 backstroke, and Houck in the 100 butterfly.
Wrestlers Bow to E-town, Beat E. Pennsboro February 6, 2017
For the Donegal wrestlers it has been a year of change as a new coach has come in and is trying to cultivate a winning attitude that has been missing for some time. Sometimes the results are not quickly seen, though, while the changes are taking hold.
New kids have joined the squad and a renewed interest in wrestling has begun to show itself, but there is still some work to be done and then hopefully the wins will begin to pile up.
Splitting its two matches last week with a 48-19 loss to Elizabethtown followed by a 53-18 win over East Pennsboro, Donegal (3-2, 4-3) was sitting in fourth place in Section Three tied with Annville-Cleona.
When Austin Burkholder stepped onto the mat for his bout at 126 against Elizabethtown the score was 12-6 in favor of the Bears, but Donegal's lone win had come by way of forfeit.
Thirty-six seconds later the senior had tied the score after needing very little time to deck Jason Range and gave Donegal a glimmer of hope.
Three straight pins and one decision later the Indians found themselves down 33-12 with five bouts to go, but could only earn two wins to finish out the match. Tyler Snyder got the first one at 160 when he out worked Hunter Spigelmeyer for a 13-3 major decision to make it 33-16, and Cael Rapp was the recipient of the second win at 220 when his 4-2 decision over Hunter Kennedy gave Donegal its final tally of the night.
They say the best cure for losing is winning and the Indians took that to heart when they traveled to Enola to face off against the East Pennsboro Panthers on Thursday.
Rapp's 8-6 win in overtime over Anthony Pallotta at 220 was answered by the Panthers' Robert Schnarrs whose pin at 285 gave East Pennsboro a 6-3 lead, albeit a short lived one.
Donegal got four pins in the next five bouts in winning 10 of the final 12 to shut down the hosts and take home the victory.
Dylan Bowers earned the quickest fall of the night, needing only 29 seconds to flatten Noah Pritchard at 106. That was followed by a Jesse Thomas acceptance of a forfeit at 113 and then pins by Davon Brantley at 120 over Colin Reddick (1:26), Burkholder at 126 over Jared Little (:49), and Jared Bixler at 132 over Sam Mastrine (1:39) to make it 33-6.
After an East Pennsboro fall at 138, Dimitri Gonzales went the distance against Owen Mostoller at 145 and earned an 8-0 major decision and at 152 Ian Rineer worked out a 10-7 decision over Kyle Bowser to make it 40-12 and mathematically impossible for the Panthers to come back.
A Donegal forfeit at 160 made it 40-18, but then Snyder worked Dillon Stuter to a 10-1 major decision, Kyle Bixler and Austin Sipe went the distance at 170 with Bixler getting the 2-0 decision, and Drew Swartz never made it out of the first period as Donegal's Keegan McCord decked him in 1:31 to end the match.
With losses last week against Cocalico (61-57), Solanco (64-41), and Daniel Boone (66-54), and only one game remaining on the schedule against Elizabethtown, the Donegal boys have one last opportunity to get a league win for the season.
Donegal (0-13, 1-18) sits in last place in Section Three, but Elizabethtown (3-10, 4-17) presents a great opportunity for the Indians and leading scorer Avery Walker to end the season on a high note. Walker has 302 points on the season and scored 52 of them in the three games played last week.
He tied Cocalico's Nick Lucky as top scorer with 18 in the Indian's matchup with the Eagles last Tuesday at home.
Donegal held a one-point advantage at 17-16 after the first quarter and widened it to 36-27 by halftime, but Cocalico came out after the break and held the Indians to only eight points in the third while netting 19 to take the lead at 46-44. They outscored Donegal 15-13 in the fourth.
Michael Lyons scored 13 for the Indians, hitting three from beyond the arc, as did Walker. Abdalla Ibrahim and Frank Devitz each had seven, Omar Ibrahim and Payton Luft each had five, and Wyatt Schlaybach put up two.
Solanco took the early lead against Donegal on Friday and never looked back as the Indians were stuck playing catch up all night.
The Golden Mules defense proved too much for Donegal as Walker was held to 12 and Lyons to 10. On offense, the Solanco attack was effective as well as 1,000 point club member Dylan Hastings put up 18 on the night.
Rounding out the scoring for Donegal were Luft (6), Stwalley (4), Devitz (4), Omar Ibrahim (3), and Kurtz (2).
Much of the same scenario from Cocalico was played out against Daniel Boone on Saturday as the Indians took a 28-24 lead into halftime but were outscored in the second half 42-26 and watched that lead disappear.
Walker once again led the team with 22 points and Lyons followed with 14. Devitz added nine, Abdalla Ibrahim put up five, Drew Stwalley scored three, and Omar Ibrahim netted one.
In what has been a stellar athletic career, not just on the basketball court but on the hockey pitch, where she and her Donegal teammates finally captured PIAA gold this past fall, and the softball field, senior Rachel Robinson is poised to join basketball's coveted 1,000 point club.
What sweetens the pot is that her 21 point performance against Daniel Boone on Saturday was just four shy of the mark and now she should be able to share her achievement at home on Senior Night.
Considering she missed much of last season with a knee injury that also sidelined her for that softball season makes it all that more amazing.
Adding some drama to the final game of the season is that with Donegal's 46-28 upset over Cocalico last Tuesday, as well as its 77-46 win at home against Solanco and Saturday's 57-41 victory at Daniel Boone, the Indians could wind up in second place tied with Cocalico which finishes up with first place Lampeter-Strasburg.
Either way it turns out, all three teams will make the L-L League tournament as the top three in each section qualify.
In the matchup with Cocalico last Tuesday, Donegal's defense held the Eagles in check as they were kept in single digits for all four quarters.
Up 24-12 at halftime, the Indians kept pouring it on offensively with a 22-16 advantage in the second half.
Robinson and Kira Baughman led all scorers with 19 and 12 points, respectively, while Carly Diffenderfer scored six, Carly Snyder added five and Alice Fernald put up four.
It was Diffenderfer's time to shine against the Golden Mares on Friday as the senior tallied 24 points along with Snyder's 15 which were both game high totals.
Amassing a 13-point lead after only one quarter of play, Donegal let Solanco back into the game in the second with a slim 40-39 lead at the break. The halftime talk by head coach Chadd Ward must have been heard, however, as the lady Indians outscored the Mares 38-16 in the second half to secure the win.
Robinson and Baughman each netted 12, Summer Steffy added seven, Fernald had five and Brenna Barber put up two for the Indians.
Daniel Boone proved to be tough in the first half on Saturday as Donegal held another one-point lead at halftime, 24-23 but used a strong second half to pull away.
Donegal got 21 points from Robinson and 18 from Baughman to lead all scorers for the day as Diffenderfer added 10, Snyder had six, and Fernald scored two.
Doubling up the Scouts 19-8 in the third quarter, the Indians widened the 43-31 gap in the fourth, outscoring the home team 14-10 over the final minutes of play.
Walker Nets 20 in Loss To Garden Spot January 30, 2017
It has not been a good year for the Donegal boys on the basketball court. At the end of last week they were sitting at the bottom of Section Two with only one win on the season and no league wins at all.
They did not fare any better last week, dropping a 55-45 contest against Garden Spot and a 59-41 loss against Ephrata and have only four games remaining in the season to gain that elusive first league victory.
Avery Walker put up 20 points against the Spartans and was 5-7 from the foul line to lead the Indians but Jordan Shewbridge netted 24 points of his own and Keontae Nunn added 10 to help lead the way to victory for Garden Spot.
Donegal trailed 15-5 after one quarter but mounted a slight comeback in the second to halve that deficit entered the break while losing 20-15.
After a Spartan surge in the third widened the gap once again at 37-20 the Indians threw up 25 points in an inspired offensive effort in the fourth, but Garden Spot answered with 18 to guarantee the victory.
Omar Ibrahim scored 9 points for Donegal followed by Wyatt Schlaybach (8), Michael Lyons (4), Payton Luft (2), and Frank Devitz (2).
Against Ephrata the Indians got out to an incredibly slow start in which they did not score a single point in the first quarter while spotting the Mounts 18. That proved to be the margin of victory as Donegal matched Ephrata's 41 total points through the next three quarters of play.
Lyons led the team with 11 points and was 3-5 at the line while Walker was close behind with nine points and a 3-4 effort at the line. Rounding out the scoring for the Indians was Schlaybach (8), Omar Ibriham (5), Devitz (5), and Josiah Perez (3).
Donegal's girls remained in third place behind Lampeter-Strasburg and Cocalico who are tied at the top of Section Two. The lady Indians can only take care of themselves and keep winning which they did last week with a 62-37 victory over Garden Spot, and a 56-39 defeat of Ephrata.
While Rachel Robinson has been methodically marching towards her 1000th career point, a mark she should reach by the end of the regular season, Kiera Baughman has been lighting it up with five 20+ point games in the past six.
Baughman and Carly Diffenderfer both put up a game high 21 points against the Spartans followed by Robinson's 12, helping lead the Indians to a 25 point victory.
After taking a slim 17-15 lead in the first quarter, Donegal ran away with the game, scoring 45 points over the final three quarters. Garden Spot, led by Megan Fisher's 10 points could only muster 22 over the same stretch.
Carly Snyder, Morgan Creek, Cheyenne Livelsberger, and Stephanie Reider all added two points apiece to the Donegal victory.
After putting up 19 points in the Indian's victory over Ephrata on Friday Robinson sat at 944 points for her career with only four games remaining on the schedule. That averages out to 14 points a game over that stretch which is under her points per game average for the year.
Baughman netted another 20 point game and Diffenderfer added 10 of her own in the road win over the Mounts. The game was never in question as the ladies built a 19-8 lead to start the game and turned it into a 36-10 advantage by halftime.
After some halftime adjustments, Ephrata came out a bit more prepared to face the Indians outscoring them 29-20 in the second half. By that time, however, it was too little too late for the home team.
Snyder, Summer Steffy and Alex Daly each contributed two points to the winning effort while Brenna Barber added one for the Indians.
Last week marked the end of the regular season for the Indian wrestlers and Donegal made the most of it by almost doubling up Pequea Valley in its 54-28 victory in Ronks last Wednesday.
It also marked the start of the wrestling post-season with the Lancaster-Lebanon League tournament which was held Friday and Saturday at Garden Spot High School.
While the score against Pequea looks impressive, it is misleading in that the Braves gave up nine forfeits out of 14 bouts. In the remaining five they blanked Donegal, earning four pins and one major decision for a 28-0 score in bouts that were wrestled.
With that match in their rearview mirror, Donegal took on the L-L League tournament and came away with four wrestlers that medaled and finished in 13th place with 85 team points. Austin Burkholder and Tyler Snyder both placed third while Cael Rapp finished in seventh and Yonnie Harvey placed eighth.
Burkholder worked his way through to the semifinals at 126 where he was bumped into the consolation rounds after Nate Fritz from Cocalico turned him and earned the fall at 1:41 of the first period.
In his first consolation bout, Burkholder met up with Penn Manor's Nick Fafel and was able to work a 4-1 decision, placing him in the third place match opposite Conestoga Valley's Seth Martin. In that bout Burkholder worked to a 7-3 decision and the bronze medal.
Leading up to his semifinal loss, Burkholder pinned Cedar Crest's Chris Byler in the second round at 3:12, and earned a 9-3 decision against David Over from Manheim Township.
Snyder's trip to third place began when he pinned A-C's Caleb Turner 20 seconds into his first round bout at 160. That win pitted him against Hunter Spiglemeyer from Elizabethtown in the quarterfinals, a bout Snyder won by a score of 8-3 to send him against eventual three time League Champion Noah Barley from Penn Manor. Barley earned the fall at 1:39 of the first period and sent Snyder into the consolation bracket.
Cocalico's Devin Sensenig met him there in a bout that Snyder won 7-1 setting up rematch with Northern Lebanon's Luis Negreiros to whom Snyder lost a close 5-3 decision one week prior in a dual match. This time it was Snyder who came away with the win and redemption with a 6-2 victory for the bronze.
Rapp won his first bout of the weekend at 220 with an early fall over Tyler Horst of ELCO in 1:10 of the first period matching him up in a quarterfinal bout with Northern Lebanon's Hunter Wallace who got the better of Rapp, recording a fall at the 1:34 mark of the bout.
In the consolations Rapp first met up with Hipolito Soriano from McCaskey and was able to catch him early in the third period and earn the fall at the 4:05 mark. Next he faced Cocalico's Austin Shaver who turned Rapp and recorded the fall in the second period. That loss placed him up against Tyler Phenegar from L-S in the seventh place bout. Rapp was able to outlast Phenegar and walked away with a hard earned 7-2 decision.
Harvey, wrestling at 285, drew Lancaster Catholic's Jake Hank in the first round and went into the third period before he was able to get the fall at the 4:13 mark. Ross Fisher from Cedar Crest awaited Harvey in the quarterfinals and proved to be too much for him to handle, earning the fall 34 seconds into the second period.
Landing in the consolations, Harvey faced ELCO's Adam Koehler in his first bout and advanced when Koehler was unable to come out in the second period. Kyle Sonnen from Northern Lebanon awaited Harvey and was just able to squeak by with a 1-0 decision that placed him in the seventh place bout against L-S's Owen Hess. Once again Harvey found himself on the wrong side of a very close bout in a 3-2 decision and walked away with the eighth place medal.
Lady Indians Knock Off Section Leader L-S January 23, 2017
It was a big showdown for the lady Indians last Tuesday as they hosted Lampeter-Strasburg (8-1, 13-3) and were looking for an upset to draw a little bit closer to the Section Two leader. They did not disappoint the home fans as they handed the Pioneers their first league loss of the season, a 52-45 effort in which they led for most of the game and held off a surging L-S squad that came within six in the final minutes.
Unfortunately they lost any momentum created by the victory by losing a non-league matchup with East Pennsboro 66-42, and a Section Two battle with fifth place Manheim Central, 56-45.
Donegal (6-3, 10-6) was in third place at the time of the game with the Pioneers and was still in sole possession of that same position even with the two losses that followed.
Three Indians posted double digit scores against L-S with team leader Rachel Robinson putting up 19, freshman powerhouse Kiera Baughman netting 16 and Carly Diffenderfer adding 13 to the mix.
Robinson inched closer to her 1000th career point and continuously drove the baseline and crashed the boards, as she has done all season, to pace the ladies. Along with Baughman and Diffenderfer hitting from outside, both recorded two 3-point shots apiece, Donegal would not be refused a victory.
Barely leading after one quarter, Donegal turned an 11-10 advantage into a 25-21 lead by halftime despite a constant challenge from the Pioneers who wanted to keep their undefeated record intact.
As Baughman and Diffenderfer continued to complement Robinson's play, the ladies slowly started to increase their lead and were up 37-32 heading into the fourth. They continued to press the Pioneers and forced them to work hard for every point, contesting each shot and eventually pulling off the upset win.
Carly Snyder added three points while Cheyenne Livelsberger put up one.
If that game was the high point of the week, then East Pennsboro represented the low as the Panthers smothered the Indians on offense and limited the scoring to only three players. Baughman led with 20, Robinson followed with 13 and Diffenderfer put up nine to account for all of Donegal's 42 points.
Though tied at 7-7 after the first quarter, East Pennsboro proved to be too much for the ladies to handle offensively as they outscored them 59-34 over the remainder of the game. Led by star Sunshine McCrae's 21 points, the Panthers rolled through the Donegal defense and just had too much firepower for them to handle.
Without Robinson in the lineup against rival Manheim Central on Friday, Baughman stepped up, knocking down two 3-pointers and 10-of-12 free throws while posting a game high 22 points but was the lone Indian with double digits in the loss.
In a poor first half, the ladies found themselves outscored 24-14 through the first two quarters and in a hole too deep to dig out of.
Despite a valiant second half effort to pull them back into contention, the ladies were unable to pull off the comeback.
Snyder scored eight on the night while Diffenderfer put up seven and Livelsberger and Alice Fernald each added two apiece.
On the other side of the court, Brooke Breinich (17), Lily Doerschuk (12), Serena Conde (11), and Kassidy Michael (10) led the lady Barons on offense.
For the Donegal boys, the struggle continued as they remained winless in Section Two after losing 68-51 to Lampeter-Strasburg on Tuesday, 68-55 to Muhlenberg on Wednesday, and 59-37 to Manheim Central on Friday.
Avery Walker was the team's leading scorer over the past week starting with 11 points against the Pioneers, including two from outside the arc, while teammate Michael Lyons matched his 11 points including making 3-of-5 from the foul line.
In what was a very competitive game up until the end, the Indians gave the Pioneers everything they could handle as they led 12-11 after a quarter of play and kept it within three at halftime.
After falling behind 29-26 heading into the third quarter, they closed the gap in a tight offensive battle and were within one at 40-39.
In the fourth quarter, however, L-S found another gear while Donegal was left spinning its tires as the home team put up a whopping 28 points to the Indians' 12.
Five other Donegal players contributed to the scoring in the game as Omar Ibrahim put up nine points followed by Abdallah Ibrahim (8), Wyatt Schlayback (5), Frank Devitz (5), and Payton Luft (2).
Muhlenberg jumped out to an early 14-6 lead and never relinquished it although the Indians did come within seven by the end of the third quarter at 47-40. Going 10-for-15 at the line in the fourth, the Mules pulled away for good despite a 16 point effort from Walker and 13 points from Devitz.
Muhlenberg's Dreyton Kipp led all scorers with 21 and was one of four players on the team to reach double digits as well.
Other players scoring for Donegal included Schlaybach and Lyons with nine, Andrew Stwalley with five, and Josiah Perez with three.
Manheim Central's Taylor Funk was a one man wrecking crew against Donegal on Friday posting a game high 23 points while sinking three 3-pointers and going 2-3 at the foul line.
The Indians were stifled all night by the Baron's defense which held team leaders Walker and Devitz to only eight points apiece. Luft scored six, Schlayback put up five, both Omar Ibrahim and Lyons had four and Cameron Kurtz had two to round out the Indians' scoring.
Despite the offensive disparity, Donegal led by one after the first quarter and was tied at 17-17 heading into the break, but a huge third quarter by the Barons opened the gap too wide for the guys to close. In a 28 point barrage, Manheim held the Indians to only 10 and outscored them by a 42-20 margin over the final two quarters to take the victory.
Last Wednesday Donegal was at 3-1 in Section Three and had an opportunity to upend undefeated Northern Lebanon, who was 5-0 at the time, and looking to lay claim to the championship with the matchup in Mount Joy.
While only sporting one league loss, the Indians found out that the talent gap was much farther apart than the records showed as the Vikings steam rolled their way to their fifth straight Section title with a 71-0 victory.
Donegal gave up a total of eight pins on a night when the Vikings just would not be denied as the Indians fell victim to ankle picks and tilts most of the night.
Davon Brantley used two quick takedowns early in his bout at 120 and had Colin Leonard turned after the first dump, but was deemed out of bounds before any back points could be assessed.
After that it was all Leanord as he went from down 4-1 to hit a takedown and make it a five point move with back points. He would eventually earn the fall 1:04 into the second period.
At 152, Dimitri Gonzales took the bout into the second period down 2-0 but got caught with a takedown and was turned for the pin at the 3:35 mark of the bout.
Tyler Snyder took to the mat at 160 in one of the most competitive bouts of the night against Luis Negreios in which he lost a 5-3 decision. Snyder scored an escape in the first after a Negreios takedown and went into the second down 2-1.
Choosing the bottom position, Negreios made it 3-1 with an escape to head into the third where Snyder pulled back to within one point by escaping from the bottom before Negreios scored a takedown late and conceded the escape to make it 5-3 after thwarting takedown attempts by Snyder.
Cael Rapp battled Maxx Emborsky at 220 through three periods and used an escape late in the second period for his first score of the bout to make it 3-1 heading into the third. He then hit a reversal after choosing down to tie the bout at 3-3, but Emborsky escaped and countered a Rapp takedown attempt to score two. A late escape by Rapp sealed the score at 6-4.
The loss put Donegal at 3-2 at the end of last week and still in third place behind Annville-Cleona and ELCO with only one match remaining.
Indians Drop a Heartbreaker, 55-54, to Solanco January 16, 2017
Donegal's boys have struggled this year to find their rhythm on the basketball court and despite some strong performances have been unable to score their first league win of the season.
Last week offered two opportunities, in the form of seventh place Elizabethtown and fifth place Solanco, for the Indians to accomplish that goal. Unfortunately the ball continued to not bounce their way, as they lost a heartbreaking 55-54 contest against the Golden Mules and were handled by the Bears 64-50.
Down by five at the half, Donegal out-scored Solanco 23-19 in the second half but came up one short of extending the game and earning another chance.
Avery Walker, ranked 10th in the league with a 16.7 ppg average, dropped a team high 18 points including one from long range and was a perfect 1-1 at the line in a game where Donegal only had six attempts at the line. Michael Lyons accounted for the remaining five, bucketing four of them and ending with 13 points on the night with one 3-pointer.
Donegal's defense was able to hold Dylan Hastings in check for the majority of the game only giving up eight points to the number four ranked scorer in the league at 19.6 ppg. It was Robert McHugh, however, who stepped up for the Golden Mules matching Avery's point total in pacing Solanco to the slim victory.
Abdalla Ibrahim (6), Omar Ibrahim (5), Andrew Stwalley (4), Payton Luft (3), Jasiah Perez (3), and Frank Devitz (2) rounded out the scoring for Donegal.
Against Elizabethtown on Friday night, the Indians got 37 combined points from Walker (24) and Devitz (13) but defensively could not slow down the Bears offensive attack which included four players scoring in double digits.
The first and fourth quarters proved costly to Donegal as the Bears outscored the Indians 16-7 in the first frame, and 20-11 in the last.
Donegal battled back to within four points at halftime, 26-22 and only trailed by five after the third quarter but it was in the fourth quarter when Elizabethtown took over and pulled away for good.
Walker and Devitz were able to hit from long range as well draining three and two shots from outside the arch, respectively, while Walker went 9-10 at the line and Devitz was a perfect 3-3.
Lyons and Abdallah Ibrahim each netted four points for Donegal, Wyatt Schlaybach put up three and Omar Ibrahim added two.
Meanwhile, the lady Indians have been staying in the hunt for a Section Two crown and a possible trip to the post-season. Led by senior Rachel Robinson who had 216 points on the season after last week's play, Donegal went 2-0 last week with a 63-45 win over Solanco and a 64-50 defeat of Elizabethtown.
Robinson, who was 119 points shy of 1,000 for her career after the Elizabethtown game, would not be denied against the Golden Mares last Tuesday putting up a game high 29 points. Her aggressive play on both sides of the ball also earned her 21 attempts from the foul line where she racked up the majority of her shots, draining 17 of them.
With a team high 16.6 ppg average, and nine games remaining on the schedule, the gritty forward should reach her career milestone by the end of this season. Earning membership into the club would be made even sweeter by the fact that she missed most of the 2015-2016 season with a knee injury.
Visiting Solanco on Tuesday, Donegal was only up by two points after the first quarter, but slowly pulled away over the course of the game while defensively holding the Mares in check, only giving up 10 points in the fourth quarter to secure the win.
Joining Robinson with a double digit night was Kiera Baughman with 18 including a perfect 6-6 from the line and Carly Diffenderfer who sank three buckets from the floor and made 8-of-11 free throws. Cheyenne Livelsberger was the only other Indian to score, putting up two points of her own.
On Friday the lady Indians visited Lebanon and easily handled the Cedars in a lopsided win that saw two players not named Robinson net 20 points.
Diffenderfer and Baughman led both teams from the floor and were nearly identical in their stat line with the only difference being that Diffenderfer was 2-4 at the line while Baughman netted one more from the floor. Both players also had two 3-pointers.
Jumping out to an early lead, Donegal turned a 15-6 advantage into a 17 point, 34-17 game at halftime. A crushing defense held Lebanon to its lowest point total of the game in the third quarter, only giving up five while still outscoring the Cedars 16-14 in the fourth.
Robinson put up 16 points and was 2-5 from the line while Alice Fernald was 1-2 on free throws and drained a 3-pointer for a 6 point total. Carly Snyder added five points, also draining one from downtown.
Donegal hasn't fared too well on the mat over the last few years, but now with a new coach and different attitude they are starting to look and feel like a different team. Sometimes a fresh start is all that is needed to change things for the better and the Indians (2-1) are definitely showing signs of life.
After a 40-36 win over Annville-Cleona last week Donegal was tied for second place in Section Three with A-C and Pequea Valley behind unbeaten ELCO and Northern Lebanon. A key showdown looms ahead this Wednesday against the Vikings.
Last Wednesday Donegal ran out to an early lead and used two key victories by Dimitri Gonzales at 152 and Tyler Snyder at 160 to stave off a surging A-C squad.
The Dutchmen had just rolled off three straight pins to pull within four points at 28-24 when Gonzales stepped on the mat. 38 seconds into the second period he flattened John Allen to put Donegal up by 10.
Snyder then earned his own second period fall when he decked Caleb Turner at the 3:29 mark of the bout stretching the Indian lead to 16 and putting the match out of reach.
Donegal notched three straight falls beginning at 195 when Keegan McCord flattened Alex Wilson at the 3:19 mark followed by Cael Rapp at 220 pinning Mark Jimenez 1:41 into the first period and ending with 285 pounds where Brooks Bear needed only 56 seconds to deck Zach Long, giving the Indians an 18-0 lead.
Following that, A-C recorded a decision at 106 and 120 while Donegal's Dylan Bowers accepted a forfeit at 113. At 126 Austin Burkholder scored a 10-2 major decision win over David Fiebig to make it 28-6 and set up the exciting finale.
Lady Indians Sit in Third Place in Section January 9, 2017
Donegal's girls have been on a roll so far this year and are roaming around in the top of the standings in Section Two. After losing two of three last week, the Indians (3-2, 7-4) were sitting in third place behind Lampeter-Strasburg (5-0, 9-1) and Cocalico (5-0, 8-3).
After handing Ephrata a 64-30 defeat, the lady Indians dropped two close games in a row to Middletown, 60-55 and Cocalico, 48-44.
Ephrata never really stood a chance against Donegal in their matchup last Tuesday in which a trio of Indians scored in double digits. Kiera Baughman (19), Rachel Robinson (18), and Carly Diffenderfer (12) led the scoring for both teams and Donegal's defense kept Ephrata in check for the majority of the game.
Donegal jumped out to an early 15-5 lead and completely commanded the game through three quarters. Up 36-12 at halftime Ephrata only managed three points in the third quarter and was down 54-15 heading into the final frame.
In the fourth quarter the Mounts doubled their score as they put up 15 points against Donegal's bench but by then it was not near enough to overcome the huge deficit.
Carly Snyder (8) joined Cheyenne Livelsberger (4) and Summer Steffy (3) in scoring for the Indians, and she also drained two 3-pointers as did Baughman and Diffenderfer.
Playing against Middletown on Tuesday the ladies played strong for three quarters, but it was a weak second quarter in which they only scored eight points that hampered their chances at taking a victory.
Both teams showed up ready to play and after a back-and-forth first quarter Donegal held a slight edge at 15-12. Middletown doubled up the Indians in the second, however, and entered the break ahead 28-23.
Robinson led the team with 19 points going a perfect 3-3 at the foul line while Diffenderfer (16) drained one from downtown and was 5-6 on free throws and Baughman (14) hit two from long range and was 2-3 at the line.
A focused Donegal squad came out in the third and took it to the Raiders as they outscored the home team 21-15 and regained the lead, albeit a slim one at 44-43.
In a gritty fourth quarter both teams battled hard, but it was Middletown that slowly pulled away. They outscored Donegal 17-11 which was enough to secure the five point win.
Also scoring for the Indians were Steffy (2), Livelsberger (2), and Snyder (1).
On Friday Donegal had an opportunity to gain ground in the section when they battled rival Cocalico and found themselves in a tough dog fight, but a tight defensive fourth quarter tipped the scales the way of the Eagles and they just slipped by with the win.
Robinson led all scoring with 17 and was a perfect 7-7 at the foul line and Diffenderfer added 12, including one three pointer.
It was a close back-and-forth affair that saw a few lead changes before the Eagles outscored the Indians 10-4 in the fourth for the win.
The first half was about as even as it could have been with the score tied at 10-10 after the first quarter and was 28-27 at halftime with the one point advantage going to Cocalico.
Donegal held the slight advantage after the break as they outscored the Eagles 13-10. Hard play on the boards by Robinson helped the Indians regain the lead at 40-38 late in the third, but the fourth quarter loomed and with both teams playing aggressive defense, Cocalico managed just enough in the end to pull out the victory.
Wins have been hard to come by for the Donegal boys' basketball team and last week was no exception. Sitting in seventh place after going 0-3 last week, the Indians are trying hard to find an identity.
Donegal began the week with a 66-40 loss to Ephrata who was tied for first place in Section Two, and followed it up with a 40-36 loss to Cocalico and a 67-43 defeat at the hands of Chambersburg in a non-league matchup.
Down by only six points at halftime in Ephrata, Donegal saw a 26-20 score grow to 50-30 by the end of the third quarter as the game slipped away from them. At one point it was 13-8 and all things seemed possible for the Indians.
Avery Walker's 12 points led the team as did the two baskets he drained from beyond the arc, but it wasn't enough to slow down the Mounts and Micah Krauter who led everyone with 20 points on the night.
After allowing 24 points to Ephrata in the third, the Indians found themselves in a hole that was too deep to climb out of and despite putting up 10 points in the fourth, they didn't have enough in the tank to catch up with the home team.
Wyatt Schlaybach put up 11 points for the Indians followed by Abdalla Ibrahim (7), Michael Lyons (4), Payton Luft (3), Omar Ibrahim (2), and Frank Devitz (1).
In Friday's matchup with Cocalico it all came down to the final frame with the score tied after three. The Eagles, who were down the entire first half, were able to muster up just enough energy to slowly pull ahead and secure the slight win.
The Indians led by eight after the first quarter, 15-7 but saw that lead slowly melt through the second as they went into halftime ahead by a score of 20-16. An inspired Cocalico showed up in the third and made it 27-27 and was able to keep the momentum going in its favor, outscoring Donegal 13-9 to end it.
Walker again led the team with 11 points followed by Omar Ibrahim and Lyons with eight, Luft and Abdalla Imbrahim had three apiece and Devitz ended with one.
Despite losing to Chambersburg by 16 points, the Indians were very much in control of the game in the first half. Only down by one, Donegal claimed the lead in the second quarter as they went from being down 10-9 to a five point advantage at 28-23 heading into the second half.
With a combined 31 points from Walker (17) and Lyons (14), the Indians had the visitors on the ropes but couldn't hold them there. An inspired Chambersburg team came out to start the second half and really laid it on, outscoring Donegal 22-5 to make it 45-33.
That proved to be too much for the Indians to handle, but they gave it a good try as they were only outscored by four in the final frame.
Omar Ibrahim scored five points followed by Schlaybach (4), Devitz (4), and Abdalla Ibrahim (3).
With a new coach in the house, Donegal wrestling is looking a little different these days and it seems to be heading in the right direction.
Barry VanScoten joined the Indians this year and replaced John Ambs at the helm of a program that has seen some tough times the past few years but is ripe for development and with a few new faces joining the team the trend seems to be rising.
Donegal put a hurting on Lancaster Catholic last Tuesday, using 11 pins and two forfeits to come away with a resounding 78-6 victory.
Samuel Lobeck represented the lone win for the Crusaders and that came in the form of a forfeit at 106 pounds. Ten straight pins later, Donegal benefitted from two Catholic forfeits and then had yet another pin at 285.
In order, it was Dylan Bowers at 113 pounds in 5:54, Davan Brantley (120, :08), Austin Burkholder (126, 3:07), Jared Brown (132, 1:55), Gavin Waltmeyer (138, 5:08), William Small (145, 1:19), Dimitri Gonzales (152, 2:20), Tyler Snyder (160, 2:18), Kyle Bixler (170, 1:23), Mason Sauder (182, :36), Keegan McCord (195, Forfeit), Cael Rapp (220, Forfeit), and Brooks Bear (285, 1:00).