So far, the Lehigh Valley Legion season has been a tough one for the Salisbury Falcons. The young team is currently 2-5, three games behind league leaders North Parkland (5-2) and Emmaus (5-2).
After an 11-4 season, it wasn't surprising that Salisbury had three players in the District 11 singles tournament. Freshman John Yurconic came into the tournament as the number five seed, while junior Ben Heydt was seeded seventh. Freshman Mason Groff was unseeded, but was in the tournament as a draw, losing a tough first-round match to Moravian Academy's Adam Kramer, the tournament's number six seed, by scores of 6-3, 6-4.
For the third straight year, the Salisbury boys swimming team took first place at the District 11 Swimming Championships held at Parkland High School, while the girls team finished in eighth. Overall, Salisbury collected 11 medals, including four gold, three silver, three bronze and one pewter.
Central Catholic diver Nick Crouse needs to be looking over his shoulder, because his friend and training partner, Salisbury's Dennis Bonner, is quickly making up ground in their annual battles at the District 11 Diving Championships.
In each of the past three seasons, Crouse has gotten the better of Bonner, although both have qualified for states. The result wasn't any different this year, but Bonner has cut Crouse's winning margin from a high of 125.35 points in 2012 to just 13.7 points in their most recent battle.
Salisbury and Northwestern came into Friday night's game on different paths.
The Falcons picked up their first opening-game win in their last 10 tries with a come from behind win over Bangor. The Tigers, meanwhile, were downed by Palisades to open their season, making the meeting between Salisbury and Northwestern somewhat of a measuring stick for two teams looking to battle through the Colonial League schedule.
For Salisbury, the Pennsylvania American Legion Baseball Region 2 Tournament got ugly even before it started.
Three days before the opening game, Salisbury was informed that it would not play its first game on Saturday night, but rather Saturday afternoon. That may not seem like a major issue, but many of the Salisbury players had asked for time off from summer jobs or otherwise rearranged schedules so they would be available for the game. The late change sent players and coaches scrambling.
Technically, Monday night's Lehigh Valley Legion Championship didn't mean much. We already knew that North Parkland, the league's regular season champion, would be going to regionals and Salisbury would take the number two spot thanks to its appearance in the tournament championship.
But still, no team wants to be beaten by the same opponent four times in a season.
The 38th Annual Via All-Star Classic tipped off at Northampton Community College Saturday, pitting teams from the Lehigh Valley Conference, Colonial League and Mountain Valley Conference against each other.
On the girls side, the Lehigh Valley West all-stars, comprised of players from Allen, Central Catholic, Dieruff, Emmaus, Parkland and Whitehall high schools took on a team of stars from the Colonial League, with players from Bangor, Palisades, Palmerton, Northwestern, Notre Dame Green Pond, Salisbury, Southern Lehigh and Wilson, with the LVC stars coming away with a 63-61 win.
Salisbury's Denny Bonner held his usual battle with Central Catholic's Nick Crouse at the District 11 Diving Championships and came up with a second place finish to Crouse, who set a district record with an 11-dive score of 457.20.
The two competitors have battled before and will do so again in the state competition and again next year when both are seniors. But the competition is a friendly one.
"We practice together," said Bonner following the meet. "We actually sort of push each other and motivate each other, so it's a good competition."