For most athletes, it’s a dream to play their favorite sport at the college level.
Some players start thinking about college athletics even before their high school careers get under way. Emmaus High School seniors Alicia Cooperman and Miranda O’Donald are two athletes in particular that had those aspirations at an early age.
Emmaus wrestler Lucas Schaf knows just how tough it can be.
Schaf, a senior, watched his brother Taylor, a 2014 graduate of Emmaus, come up short at capturing 100 career wins on the mat. Injuries in his sophomore and junior seasons had a big part to do with that shortcoming.
Lucas wanted to make a name not only for himself, but for his family name as well when he sought that same elusive feat.
Emmaus head coach Jeff Arbushites has seen, for the most part, a team that has lived up to expectations through the Hornets’ 17 dual matches this season.
But there have also been a few occasions in which Arbushites is waiting for that same Hornets squad to put it all together against some of the East Penn Conference’s top-level competition.
It’s a spectacle that brings in not just some of the top players and teams from the state, but also some of the best in the nation, together to compete on one stage. The 2016 Lehigh Valley Hoop Group Showcase has lived up to its expectation once again, as an eventful day of basketball is scheduled for Sunday at Parkland High School. The event once again features some of the area’s and nation’s top talent.
Harold Fairclough spent plenty of time in the green and gold colors of Central Catholic High School, both as a player and coach for the school’s football team. During his six-year head coaching tenure of the Vikings, Fairclough led Central Catholic to a state championship in 2010. He also won a state title as a player in 1993.
Early on, it looked as if the Emmaus girls basketball team was capable of pulling the upset against unbeaten Parkland in a rivalry EPC battle. The Hornets trailed by just a bucket after the first quarter and led 21-20 midway through the second period.
But when Parkland needed it most, the Trojans strung together a run with defense that Emmaus never recovered from.
As the swimming season quickly approaches the New Year, both the Emmaus boys and girls sit atop the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference at 4-0 in dual meets. The girls defeated Easton in their latest meet, 102-75, while the boys breezed to a 103-75 victory.
But while the records are unblemished at this point in the season, head coach Tim O’Connor knows there is certainly room for improvement. With the key part of the season coming up and the postseason still weeks away, there is plenty of time to work on those issues.
Several former Emmaus High School athletes are contributing to teams at the college level.
As a junior on the DeSales University volleyball team, Lisa Wallitsch tallied 1,232 assists, 302 digs, 228 total attacks, 71 service aces and 32 blocks. For her efforts in leading the Bulldogs (22-12 overall, 6-1 Mac Freedom Conference) to the conference tournament championship game, Wallitsch was named to the AVCA Mid-Atlantic All-Region First Team and an AVCA Honorable Mention All-American. She is now up to fourth all-time in school history with 3,001 assists.
It wasn’t too long ago that Kyle Boney broke former Emmaus running back Andy Davidson’s single-season rushing mark. That record-breaking game came just last week against Williamsport. Boney added yet another milestone on Friday night and once again followed in his predecessor’s footsteps.
Led by Boney’s 177 yards on the ground, Emmaus capped its season with a dominant 56-13 victory over Reading in the Eastern Conference Class 4A Championships. Boney eclipsed the 3,000-yard rushing mark in the process, and has run for nearly 2,500 yards and 40 touchdowns in his final season.
Cross country coach Dan Wessner has been by Katie Bacher’s side each time she has made the trip to Hershey, including the last three state meets. After placing 60th as a sophomore and moving up to 38th the following season, Wessner believed Saturday could be the day the Emmaus senior finally cracked the top 25 to earn a medal.
Instead, beyond reasons out of her control, Bacher slipped to 89th place in the Class AAA girls race, a mark she wasn’t pleased with one bit. And no one felt more heartbroken than her mentor and coach.