The Colonial League boys’ basketball championship is set for Friday night at Freedom High School, culminating the six-team tournament that began last Saturday.
Unfortunately for Salisbury (9-8), the Falcons were the top team left out of the league playoffs. A win against Southern Lehigh in its regular season finale would have given Salisbury the sixth and final seed, but a tough four-point loss left the Falcons on the outside looking in.
Four top-seeded teams earned league basketball championships this week as tournaments were completed in both the East Penn Conference and Colonial League.
In the EPC title games, Allen boys beat Liberty and Bethlehem Catholic girls held off Nazareth Thursday night at the PPL Center. In the Colonial League, Southern Lehigh upended Bangor for the boys title and Notre Dame (Green Pond) took down Moravian Academy for the girls championship Friday at Freedom High School.
League championship basketball match ups are now finalized for both the Colonial League and East Penn Conference.
The Colonial League held girls semifinals Wednesday evening at Catasauqua High School.
Top-seeded Notre Dame (Green Pond) beat No. 4 Bangor 51-36 in a girls semifinal to advance to the championship game, while No. 3 Moravian Academy took down No. 3 Northwestern 49-45.
The Crusaders and Lions will meet Friday at 6 p.m. with the boys championship between No. 1 Southern Lehigh and No. 6 Bangor scheduled for 7:45 p.m.
Basketball playoffs continued in the Colonial League and East Penn Conference Tuesday evening.
In the Colonial League were boys semifinals, while the EPC held girls semifinals.
Top-seeded Southern Lehigh beat No. 4 Notre Dame (Green Pond) 82-60. Friday night’s final will pit the Spartans against No. 6 Bangor, a 54-41 winner over No. 2 Moravian Academy Tuesday.
The East Penn Conference and Colonial League held quarterfinal basketball playoff games over the weekend.
Both leagues have semifinals and finals set for this week.
In EPC boys action, top-seeded Allen beat Bethlehem Catholic 67-58 on Friday and will take on Parkland in the semifinals. The No. 5 seed Trojans topped No. 6 East Stroudsburg South, 57-52, on Saturday afternoon.
The other half of the boys bracket has No. 2 seed Liberty squaring off against No. 3 Central Catholic. The Hurricanes beat Freedom in the first round, while the Vikings beat Easton Friday.
The 45th Annual Via All-Star Basketball Classic is set for Saturday, March 28 at Northampton Community College.
Super Saturday will include four all-star basketball games featuring the top senior players from the Lehigh Valley area. It begins at 10:30 a.m. with the North vs. South girls game, followed by their boys counterparts at noon.
After the 1:30 Special Olympics Shoot Out, the West vs. East girls (2 p.m.) and boys (3:30 p.m.) games will finish off the day.
From the basketball court to the sidelines and then to the swimming pool, Olivia Hoeing’s last three winter seasons have been anything but ordinary.
As a sophomore back in the winter of 2018, Hoeing was one of the Salisbury’s better basketball players for former head coach Joe Mladosich. The following winter, however, threw a curveball at the then-junior Falcon after a successful soccer season in the fall.
A low heart rate caused Hoeing to miss her entire junior basketball season and resort to a spot on the bench, a position she was never accustomed to.
One of the complaints with basketball is that the final couple minutes in a close game can take what seems like an eternity to play. Coaches save timeouts and the ever-popular unintentional intentional foul adds time to the game.
A lot can happen during those long stretches, when in fact in game time it might be just a few seconds, 4.8 seconds to be exact. That’s how long it took for Salisbury and Northwestern Lehigh fans to teeter between exhilaration and despair in a game won by the Falcons 46-42.
The opportunity was there, but too many mistakes kept the Salisbury boys’ basketball team from capturing that signature win of its season.
Despite erasing a 13-point third-quarter deficit against one of the Colonial League’s top teams, and even leading in the final seconds, Salisbury couldn’t hammer the final nail down.
Palmerton’s Tyler Stuck hit two free throws late, and a last-second jumper from Salisbury’s Patrick Foley was off target in a 49-48 loss on Monday night on the Falcons’ home court.
Devon Alder had not placed in previous trips to Panther Valley’s Coal Cracker Tournament.
The event has grown over the years he’s been attending and is now held in two different gyms at Lehighton High School.
This year’s field was certainly the deepest and most talented field the tournament has ever seen. And Alder, a Salisbury High School senior, thrived against the top competition.
“I’m pretty happy with how I did,” he said. “In the past I have never placed in this tournament. I came in this year and got seventh, It’s a great feeling.”