The Emmaus boys basketball team was in need of a spark. Having lost two games in a row earlier this month, the Green Hornets fell below .500 with a 5-6 record overall. They were also without regular starters in juniors Zach Sabol (foot injury) and Bryce Diehl (illness) for much of that stretch, and struggled to find an offensive rhythm.
As a freshman, Jess Hurlburt won the District 11 diving championship and went on to place third in states. Then, a shoulder injury sidelined her and put a major obstacle in her way. She didn’t dive with the high school team in the past two seasons, but returned for her senior season and is showing that she’s back to form.
Emmaus took fourth place at the Denver Duals last weekend at Cocalico High School.
The Hornets opened the tournament with a 55-21 win over Wyomissing. The Hornets fell to the hosts 41-35 in the second round. They beat Wilson 36-28 in the third round and fell to Garden Spot in the third place match, 40-24.
Emmaus dropped a dual meet to Northampton last Friday, 55-15.
Peyton Brown (106) and Kordell Waiters (113) both earned pins for Emmaus. Caden Wright (160) was the only other Hornet winner in the match with a 6-1 decision.
The Eastern Pennsylvania Conference made their pairings official on Wednesday night for the EPC Championship Wrestling Day, which is set for Saturday, Jan. 27, at the Easton Area Middle School.
Round 1 begins at 1:30 p.m. and features three matches: 17th – Pleasant Valley vs. Central Catholic; 15th – PM West vs. Dieruff and 13th – ES North vs. Allen.
Round 2 begins at 3:15 p.m. and also features three matches: 11th – Emmaus vs. PM East; 9th – Whitehall vs. Freedom and 7th – Stroudsburg vs. Parkland.
Emmaus swimming head coach Tim O’Connor has spent a lot of time thinking about how best to mix and match his swimmers for relay events this season, especially on the boys side. With that being part of what O’Connor needs to figure out this season, the Wilson Relays came in handy to help sort out who wants to be where.
The boys team finished third, while the girls came home with a fifth-place finish in the team competition. Wilson and North Penn finished ahead of the boys, while North Penn took home first place on the girls side at Wilson West Lawn.
For the Emmaus boys basketball team, the rest of the season is all about getting to 11. That’s the number of wins the Hornets will need to reach the district playoffs. And the road to 11 got a bit more difficult over the past couple weeks.
Emmaus head coach Steve Yoder knew this year’s team would have some inexperienced players taking key roles. He didn’t think it would be as many as he’s needed at this point in the season.
In this age of viral videos and highlight shows, a lot of student-athletes that get the most attention are the ones who put big numbers in the box score or make the dazzling plays for their team.
While every team needs those players, it’s easy to forget that there are a lot of other players who help to make those things happen and help to make the wins happen, too.
Emmaus High School has one of those players in Kathryn DeJohn, who quietly comes off the bench, does her job and helps to make things happen.
Leah Tannous is having fun playing out her senior season on the court at Emmaus.
This season’s team is especially close and its found a new sort of bond under coach Kelsey Gallagher, who is in her first season with the team. Even though Tannous is happy, there are a few things she wouldn’t mind changing.
“Obviously, I wish we had more wins, but I think that will come,” said Tannous. “We’re a very close team and get along great together.
The Emmaus wrestling team went 2-2 at last weekend’s Whitehall Duals Wrestling Tournament.
The Hornets were the No. 11 seed in the 16-team bracket and lost to No. 6 East Stroudsburg South in their first match, 46-27. They bounced back to beat Catasauqua 54-24 in the losers bracket and followed that with a 40-30 win over Southern Lehigh to advance to the ninth-place match.
Emmaus lost its final match to Quakertown, 61-15 to finish 10th at the event.
The Hornets also competed in a nonleague match last week against Delaware Valley Regional of New Jersey and lost 41-24.
Every January, Bucknell University plays host to some of the top high school swimming and diving teams for the New Year’s Challenge. As usual, Emmaus was invited to this year’s event and came home with strong finishes for both the boys and girls teams. The boys team placed third behind Wilson West Lawn and North Allegheny, while the girls placed fifth in the team standings, with Wilson West Lawn grabbing first on the girls side as well.