Girls soccer to get tested
Whitehall's girls' soccer team already may be turning its attention to next week when they have two key Eastern Pennsylvania Conference showdowns with Emmaus and Parkland, two that presumably will test the team's mettle.
In the meantime, though, the Zephyrs can temporarily bask in the limelight on an 8-0 start, one in which they have allowed just one goal in the process.
"We have been playing well and the girls have been adjusting well to the new system," said first-year head coach Dave Weitzman. "They are out there playing their roles well. We still need to play some of the top teams like Emmaus and Parkland, but that doesn't take away from what we have accomplished so far.
"I'm happy where we are considering I starting coach them a month ago. This has been a true team effort from our trio of seniors to the underclassmen."
Weitzman praised the effort of senior Kourtney Cunningham, who recently notched her 100th career goal. Her older sister, Kayla, has the league and district record with 168 career goals.
"It was really exciting getting the (100th) goal," said Kourtney Cunningham, whose younger sisters Kaylee and Kasey are also on the roster. "I didn't know if I would be able to reach it, but it is a great feeling."
Putting her personal accomplishments aside, Cunningham isn't surprised by her team's fast start.
"In the offseason, we really all came together and we all had the same goals," said Cunningham. "We started playing like a team early on. This team is more like a family like any other since I have been here."
Weitzman also cited the play of fellow seniors goalie Jude Luckenbill and forward Matty Walker.
"Those three seniors have really done a great job," said Weitzman. "They have really been leaders for us on many fronts. They have set the pace and the younger girls have followed."
Weitzman also recognized the play of sophomore Cara Bonshak and junior Taylor George.
"Cara (Bonshak) has been tremendous," said Weitzman. "She has a lot of poise and looks like a senior out there. She is a big, strong player who will definitely help us. Taylor (George) has been terrific and she had a really gutty performance against Nazareth. She works very hard up and down the field."
Weitzman is confident his club can maintain their level and avoid being over confident with their unblemished record. They will be tested with their meeting with Emmaus next Tuesday and Parkland next Thursday. The Zephyrs will finish this week with Pocono Mountain East.
"I think they look at their record and don't get caught up in it," he said. "They are very confident right now and realize they have some difficult games ahead. We'll still compete to win and play to our ability and take care of business."
The boys split two recent games, defeating Eastburg South 5-0 and falling to Nazareth 2-1.
In the win over Eastburg, Brian Heckman score two goals to help lead the Zephs to victory.
Javaughn Hussett scored the team's first goal and also added two assists. Mike Saccani scored the team's fourth goal, which came in the second half and also assisted on Heckman's first game. Zahir Linton scored the fifth goal on another assist from Hussett.
Tony Kleckner also picked up an assist.
Chase Missmer got the win saving four of Eastburg's five shots. The Zephs shot 18 times.
Against the Eagles, Whitehall got on the board first with a goal from Hussett assisted by Kleckner, but Nazareth would answer back with two in the first half.
Ibrahim Tookar and Anthony Termini each scored unassisted for the Eagles.
Whitehall couldn't find the back of the next despite outshooting Nazareth 12-5.