From the wrestlers to the head coach, this year’s Salisbury wrestling team will feature an entirely new cast when it takes the mat this season.
A year ago, Alex Nicholas had one of the best seasons ever for a Salisbury wrestler as he bulldozed through the Colonial League and District 11 landscape at heavyweight. Nicholas, now wrestling at Penn State, went 33-3 last winter with a state medal, a Southeast Regional championship and a District 11 Class 2A title. He was one of just two wrestlers (along with Zach Adams) on last year’s team. Both have graduated.
Head coach Jason Weaver has been around long enough to know that defense will be the staple of a team’s ability to compete for championships. That remains true for this year’s Salisbury boys’ basketball team as Weaver enters his ninth season with the Falcons.
While Salisbury graduated its top two scorers from last year’s team that qualified for the state tournament, plenty of offensive firepower returns in 2017. The biggest question is if the Falcons will buy into Weaver’s request of amplifying their defense to a championship level.
The Salisbury swimming team might not have the most swimmers in the Colonial League, but it certainly does have some of the area’s best.
After successful seasons for a number of boys and girls last winter, much of that talent returns for 2017 looking to take even more steps forward. And it starts with 2015 two-time state gold medalist Mahlon Reihman.
The Salisbury girls’ basketball team will have a drastic new look to it this season. The Lady Falcons are now turning the page without four-year varsity player and 1,000-point scorer Lindsay Bauer.
Bauer wasn’t the only graduate from last year’s squad, which went 12-5 in the Colonial League and advanced to the district quarterfinals, but her 19.6 points per game will be missed greatly. Kristen Bucchin, Sydney Utesch and Victoria Tramonte also graduated from the 2016 Salisbury team.
There’s no question that Mahlon Reihman has drawn plenty of attention from Division I college swimming teams across the nation. It isn’t hard to see why schools would salivate over the senior’s 6-foot-6 frame and state championship resume.
With a number of options, Reihman’s choice wasn’t necessarily clear-cut at the beginning of the recruiting process. But his decision became more and more clear with the passing weeks.
The decision wasn’t an easy one, but Salisbury senior diver Tyler Keller knows he made the right choice.
After three standout seasons on the diving board, and one more to come in the upcoming months, Keller now knows where he’ll be diving at the college level. The Falcon senior recently committed to Lehigh University to continue his diving career at the Division I level.
Several Salisbury graduates played on college athletic teams during the fall season.
Senior goalie Emily Hoats started 11 of DeSales’ 19 games for the women’s soccer team. She helped the Bulldogs win five of those games, recorded 4 shutouts on the season, and came up with 32 saves in net. Hoats finished her final college season with a .640 save percentage. DeSales went 9-10 in 2016 and advanced to the MAC Freedom Conference championship game.
When high school students are looking at potential colleges, some like to visit schools close to home. Salisbury senior Caylin Meikrantz is not one of those students. She’s always dreamed about attending college in the south.
At this time next year, Meikrantz will have achieved two long-time goals.
Meikrantz, who recently committed to Elon University in North Carolina, will also continue her soccer career at the Division I level. Her decision came back in April, just months before a historic senior season at Salisbury got underway.
The Salisbury boys’ soccer senior class patiently waited for the elusive district championship that it had been chasing for years.
The Falcons’ historic season took another step forward last week, led by those seniors. A win against District 2 champion Scranton Prep in the PIAA Class 2A tournament advanced Salisbury to the quarterfinal round and just three wins away from a state title.
There was certainly a feeling of heartbreak following last week’s PIAA Class 2A playoff game for the Salisbury girls soccer team, particularly in the way the Lady Falcons’ last game had to end. No team wants a game to be decided on a penalty kick in overtime.
And when that game comes with a chance at advancing to the state quarterfinals on the line, it makes the loss much more difficult to swallow.
Despite falling to Montoursville last Tuesday in the first round of the PIAA tournament, there will be plenty of smiles in regards to what the Falcons accomplished in 2016.