As a freshman, Andrew Gaines had the experience of winning a District 11 championship with the Emmaus soccer team. His goal was to win another, and to have an even larger role in helping his team to the title.
The team came close in each of the next two seasons but ultimately fell to first Parkland and then Freedom in the district finals. As a senior though, Gaines and the team broke through, beating Whitehall 1-0 in overtime to have gold medals hung around their necks.
Recent Emmaus High School graduates Alanna and Kayla Smith are not only sisters, they were teammates on the track and field squad. They’ll always be sisters, but over the next four years they will continue to be teammates.
Both are heading to the University of Connecticut and can’t wait to get there.
Macy Van Den Elzen became a sought-after prospect on the volleyball circuit with many college coaches courting her to join their programs. Even with all of the high-end Division I interest, the decision was an easy one for the Emmaus High School senior.
This fall, Van Den Elzen will be a student-athlete at Penn State University, a school and program that she has had her eyes set on for several years.
Caden Wright’s decision to attend Lehigh University this fall was both inspirational and pragmatic.
“I chose Lehigh University because I felt at home,” said Wright, a recent Emmaus High School graduate and champion wrestler. “I have grown up going to Lehigh wrestling matches and looking up to their wrestlers.”
As Wright’s own wrestling career progressed, he worked out at the school’s regional training center. This allowed him to develop relationships with Lehigh coaches and athletes.
When it came down to choosing a school for next year, Emmaus High School senior Reece Wieder chose a promising program instead of one with an established tradition. He also had to choose between two sports.
Wieder decided to continue his academic and lacrosse career at Division 3 Nazareth College in upstate New York.
Finally, some clarity on the high school sports scene broke last week when the PIAA Board of Directors met and set guidelines for organized team activities to resume.
Teams will be allowed to resume formal activities based on the phase their county is in directed by Gov. Tom Wolf.
While all signs point to July 1 as a time-frame when most schools will be able to meet in person again, the board decided unanimously to give executive director Robert Lombardi the authority to make a decision when workouts before the fall can begin.
Girls’ high school wrestling is on the rise.
For the past five years, it has been the fastest growing high school sport in the country. Much like the national statistics, Pennsylvania high school wrestling has experienced a 100 percent growth of girls competing on high school boys teams in the past five years.
All 12 PIAA district areas have girls wrestling within their area schools.
Wyatt Henseler has known for a long time that he wanted to extend his high school baseball career to the Division 1 college level. He’s also known that going to a Division 1 school for baseball alone wasn’t part of the plan.
The school had to have a great academic curriculum to give him something more than just four more years of baseball. In addition to those needs, Henseler wanted a school that was relatively close to home so he could continue to spend time with his family.
Last season, the Emmaus girls lacrosse team fell just one game and one goal shy of earning a spot in the District 11 Class 3A tournament.
A 12-11 loss to Southern Lehigh in the regular season finale kept the Green Hornets from the playoffs after the team won three of its last five games of the regular season.
Entering the 2020 campaign, Emmaus looked to get back to the postseason after a one-year hiatus, finishing with an 8-10 record overall last season.
Thomas Hanvey had a lot of options to play Division II soccer in college. Several PSAC teams recruited him during his junior year at Emmaus High School.
After giving serious consideration to PSAC East schools in Bloomsburg, Lock Haven and East Stroudsburg, he eventually chose one of the league’s most successful programs. Hanvey will report to West Chester University in fall.
“The main difference was academics,” said Hanvey, who plans to major in finance and accounting. “I liked the fit and the location. It was also the best soccer program.”