Salisbury’s biggest challenge on the basketball court is dealing with teams that have height.
The Falcons ran into three teams with plenty of size during last week’s SportsFest A-Town Throwdown tournament at Cedar Beach. And while Salisbury lost all three games in pool play, head coach Jason Weaver saw some positives despite knowing the obstacle that was in front of his team.
Nobody could have predicted the game that Salisbury and Hatfield-Towamencin played in their first round game of the Region 2 playoffs for Legion baseball.
When all was said and done, the teams scored 42 runs on 38 hits and 13 errors as Hatfield downed Salisbury 26-16, sending the Falcons to the loser’s bracket of the double-elimination tournament.
The Salisbury Falcons had the dubious distinction Saturday of being rained out twice on the same day against the same team, but at different sites. Their Lehigh Valley Legion winner’s bracket game against South Parkland should have been played at Salisbury High School, but rains left that field unplayable. The game was moved to Parkland High School, whose field was in much better shape. Then came a late afternoon storm that made that field unplayable.
With three games left in the Allentown Summer Basketball League season, defending state champ Reading sits atop the Large-School Division, while undefeated Faith Christian leads the Small-School Division.
Teams will have off Thursday while many partake in this weekend’s A-Town Throwdown, which is part of the annual SportsFest. The summer league will be back at Cedar Beach on Tuesday, July 18.
LARGE SCHOOL DIVISION
Reading 7 - 1
Central Catholic 7 - 2
Allen 4 - 2
Bangor 7 - 3
Wilson West Lawn 7 - 3
Dieruff 6 - 3
Salisbury knew what it would take on Sunday. A solid 14 innings of baseball and victories in both games of a doubleheader against Coplay would give the Falcons the regular season Lehigh Valley Legion championship.
The Falcons would needed a little more than 14 innings. After a convincing 8-1 victory in the first game on Sunday, Salisbury needed extra innings to get the job done in the night cap. But the Falcons were able to come from behind and secure the 4-3 victory in nine innings at Salisbury High School.
Salisbury may have not started the inaugural Cedar Beach Basketball Showcase on a strong foot, but it certainly finished on one.
After falling to Boyertown’s B team on Friday night to kick off the tournament, the Lady Falcons looked like a different team on Saturday. Not even 24 hours later, they began a string of three straight wins to advance into play late Sunday afternoon where their run came to an end.
The Salisbury legion team had a rare night off from playing a game on Monday, but head coach Scott Heppenheimer was still at work. He went to the Coplay and West Allentown game for a bit of scouting. He wasn’t the only one.
“I went to watch the Coplay and West Allentown game today, and there were five of my players sitting down the left field line watching their game,” Heppenheimer said. “That was kind of cool. They’re excited. We have work to do yet, but we are in a pretty good spot right now.”
Perhaps the biggest challenge lying ahead for head coach Jason Weaver is how he’s going to replace the size of Jaxon Costello, Ryan Slutsky and Eric Frankenfield.
If he can’t replace them, Weaver is hoping to at least mask their departures and his team is focused on that this summer.
The Falcons have adjusted to life without those three in summer league play so far. And most recently, they got a prime opportunity to gauge their progress in the inaugural Cedar Beach Basketball Showcase.
Several Salisbury High School graduates competed on college athletic teams this past spring season.
Saint Joe’s pitcher Justin Aungst spent a majority of last baseball season coming out of the bullpen. This past spring he started eight out of the 15 games he appeared in, posting a 2-3 record with a 5.22 ERA. In his 50 innings he allowed 54 hits and 29 earned runs while striking out 38 batters and walking 18.
The first game of Salisbury’s legion doubleheader against Lower Mac didn’t go as planned Saturday. An 8-1 defeat handed the Falcons their first loss of the young season.
But they responded when the two teams took the field in the evening. Led by 15-year old Will Rodriguez’s complete game, one-run effort, Salisbury took game two of the doubleheader, 6-1 on its home field.