Hornets remain undefeated
The Emmaus boys basketball team won its first three games of the season rather comfortably, all by double-digits.
Last Tuesday night against Nazareth was a different story. Emmaus trailed after each of the first two quarters, and led by just one heading into the fourth before beating the Blue Eagles 64-60.
“I learned something new tonight,” said Emmaus head coach Steve Yoder. “This team has heart. We faced a lot of adversity tonight with kids being sick, others having to play all 32 minutes and then Zach [Sabol] got into foul trouble early. We overcame a lot to get an important win tonight.”
The Hornets (6-0 overall, 4-0 EPC) fell behind 17-16 after the opening quarter and trailed by a game-high nine points, 36-27, at halftime.
“They’re a really good team,” Yoder said. “They have two of the best players in the Lehigh Valley. We have some good ones too. So it was really just a heavyweight battle between two of the top teams in the conference. It had a playofflike feel.”
After a sluggish first half and its biggest deficit of the season thus far, Yoder didn’t reveal exactly what he said at halftime.
“It’s funny because everyone wanted to know,” Yoder said. “But a good magician doesn’t give up his secrets. We keep it simple and we give them a couple of messages. They are really good at receiving those messages and following the plan.”
A theme this season has been the Hornets’ play in the third quarter.
Emmaus outscored Nazareth 18-8 in the third quarter to take a 45-44 lead heading into the final frame.
“Everything revolves around defense,” said Yoder. “We held them without a field goal for four minutes there in that quarter, and the crowd got behind us and that really helped.”
The Hornets made a couple of more stops and converted on offense a few more times than the Blue Eagles, and were able to hold on to the win.
Senior Mark Swedberg led four Hornets in double-figures, scoring a team-high 16 points. Classmates Ethan Parvel and Bryce Diehl each added 13 points, while fellow senior, Zach Sabol, tallied 10 points.
Emmaus stayed unbeaten with a 79-37 win over Central Catholic Friday night and a 56-48 victory over Abington Heights Saturday respectively.
The Hornets travel to Orlando, Florida for a tournament from December 27-29. They return for games against Stroudsburg (Jan. 3), Bethlehem Catholic (Jan. 5) and Pocono Mountain East (Jan. 8).