Four Whitehall student-athletes recently revealed where the next chapter in their lives will take them, with local universities benefiting from those decisions.
Bret Legath, Markes Cruz, Dez Boykin and Braxton Marrero all announced that they will be playing collegiate football in Pennsylvania as part of the National Letter of Intent Press Conference at Whitehall High School on Feb. 8.
All four seniors were integral parts of two district championship teams, and they hope to bring that winning tradition with them to their respective schools of choice.
Now that the regular season has wrapped up for the Whitehall swimming team, they’ll be preparing to take a large pool of talent to the district tournament that gets underway next weekend at Parkland High School.
The girls finished the season at 9-7, while the boys posted a 6-10 mark. The girls ended on a strong note, defeating Allentown Central Catholic 86-84, while the boys dropped their contest against the Vikings, 95-74.
Junior varsity wrestlers across the region took the spotlight last weekend as they competed in their annual tournament that showcases the talent throughout the wrestling-rich Lehigh Valley.
The scene was East Stroudsburg High School as 30 teams competed last weekend in the Ray Nunamaker District XI Coaches association Wrestling Tournament.
The junior varsity tourney features schools who compete in the AA and AAA classifications. The tournament was won by Northampton who finished with 202 points. Whitehall finished eighth, locking up that spot with 52 points.
Four quarters of basketball, thirty-two minutes, came down to four seconds as the Zephyrs had the opportunity to defeat Emmaus last Thursday night in their final game of the season.
The undermanned Zephyrs, playing with a short bench, had led most of the way, but were trailing the Green Hornets by one as they attempted an inbounds pass at mid court to see if they could pull out the win.
When the Whitehall swim team hosted Parkland last week, head coach Pete Rile knew it was an opportunity for his swimmers to have some fun since toppling the Trojans would be a herculean task.
While that turned out to be true as the Zephyrs girls lost 132-38, and the boys succumbed 121-44, one swimmer who made a statement that he meant business was junior Daniel Jablonski. He set another school record, this time setting the mark in the 100 backstroke with a 58.88 finish, toppling the previous mark of 59.18 set in by Mike Ponte in 1998.
The Whitehall wrestling team closed out the regular season with a win over Palmerton High School, and now they’ll turn their attention toward the individual tournament that gets underway next weekend.
The Zephyrs ended the season with a 63-16 victory over the Blue Bombers. The win also puts a wrap on their dual meet season, finishing 11-8 overall this year.
Mike Ajami got things rolling for the Zephs, pinning Cody Green in 3:03. Randy Okungu followed with another fall, decking Aiden Melber in 0:50.
It was a good week for the Whitehall wrestling team as they prevailed against a league rival who has been a thorn in their side, and then had a top ten finish at the EPC championship.
The thorn in their side can be more accurately stated as a stinger in their side as Emmaus has won the previous five meetings. Whitehall put an end to that string, or sting, with a 35-32 win over the Green Hornets.
The win puts the Zephs at 10-5 on the season with two more dual meets remaining.
As the basketball season winds down, the Whitehall girls basketball team will have to overcome some recent adversity in their quest to make the playoffs.
They lost another player to an injury as Taryn Sayre was recently sidelined. This follows in the footsteps of losing Olivia George who was injured in their game against Hazleton. Both players will be further evaluated and a firm timetable for their return is still not certain.
The Whitehall boys basketball team ran into another northern buzzsaw when East Stroudsburg South blew into Zephyr Gymnasium last Friday.
The Cavaliers, following in the fleet footsteps of Pocono Mountain West who also reside in the Mountain Division of the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference, used their quickness and athleticism to keep Whitehall’s offense under wraps for most of the game, earning a 66-39 victory.
The loss put the Zephs at 5-12 on the season and officially eliminated them from the postseason.
Flipping is an important aspect in swimming as swimmers who execute a precise flip turn have set themselves up for a competitive edge, but in Thursday’s meet against Nazareth, flipping became synonymous with missed opportunities in close races against the Blue Eagles.
Head coach Pete Rile was looking over the results from their meet against the Blue Eagles in which the girls lost by 20 points, 95-75. The girls won four events, and as Rile perused the times, he felt that total could have been much higher.