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Football, V/JV field hockey, V/JV soccer, V/JV softball, V/JVbaseball & track
Parkland looks to improve in a very competitive LVC
By Bradley A. Huebner
Special to The Morning Call
September 7, 2007
The past few seasons, the Parkland High field hockey team has entered the season almost giddy, expecting big rewards and a healthy return on offseason investment for its former top-tier program.
The trophies minted in the recent past, however, have been mostly for individual accomplishment. And after graduating a strong senior class that finished a respectable 12-9, the Trojans entered 2007 somewhere between a tad hopeful and a bit optimistic.
Their play in a 1-0 loss to powerhouse Allen hinted at their potential.
'Our passing combinations were working,' said rookie head coach Donna Hibshman, up from coaching the JV team. 'The overlaps and getting the looks to the angles. Plus, the defensive strategy, too. We really focused on a few of their players. The goal of this team is to maintain consistency throughout the season.'
You can hear the tempered comments offering hope for success but cautioning against gaudy visions of glory.
'We live and play in a very competitive area as far as field hockey is concerned,' Hibshman added. 'Top programs in the area include Emmaus, Allen, Lehighton, Pleasant Valley, Nazareth, Bangor, Northampton, Pen Argyl, and Moravian Academy. The remaining teams shouldn't be taken lightly either.'
Heading into today, the Trojans are 1-2 with a decisive 6-1 loss to District 3's Wilson West Lawn and a decisive 8-1 win over Dieruff.
The coming week presents Central Catholic, Emmaus, Whitehall and Pleasant Valley. The Lehigh Valley Conference and Morning Call area in particular offer no rest stops.
'Our goal is to do better each year,' said Hibshman, who played center back at Allen during her senior year in 1984 before helping Bloomsburg to a national title at center back as a senior. 'We want to win one more game and lose one less game each year.'
The program instituted by former head coach Anne Hall has shifted pilots if not philosophies. After helping with the youth leagues, Hibshman climbed the ranks to become a middle school coach, then assisted Hall as the JV coach the past two years.
'We were very successful in our endeavors with the JVs,' said Hibshman.
Her climb has progressed off the field as well. She started out assisting Allen coach Anne Wenninger for a year, then pursued her career, a master's degree and motherhood before returning to coaching.
Now, she oversees the development of 34 high school players, including eight seniors and five juniors.
Against Dieruff on Thursday, junior Arialle Hess and sophomore Emily Schneider scored two goals for Parkland.
FIELD HOCKEY TOP TEN
1)EMMAUS (2-0): Hornets have nine Division I players and ranked No. 2 in U.S.
2)UPPER PERKIOMEN (2-0): Indians remain state runner-up with new coach.
3)LEHIGHTON (2-0): Indians lost just once last year, to Upper Perk.
4)ALLEN (3-0): Canaries would be talk of LVC for third year, if not for Emmaus.
5)NORTHAMPTON (3-0): K-Kids look sharp in coach Deb Anthony's final year.
6)STROUDSBURG (2-0): Mounties e moved up a notch in MVC, past Pleasant Valley.
7)BANGOR (3-0): Slaters continue ascent as unbeaten rising JV girls contribute.
8)SOUTHERN LEHIGH (3-0): It's fall, it's hockey, it's Solehi.
9)QUAKERTOWN (2-0): Notched shutout wins over P-W, Wissahickon.
10) FREEDOM (2-0): Defense, girls, defense!
Local field hockey players to make oral commitments to colleges.
LVC: Emmaus - Ali Tunitis (Ohio State), Abbey Huck (Michigan State), Erin Jennings (Princeton), Tara Jennings (Duke), Rachel Jennings (Virginia), Brae Dowling (Michigan State), Anne Giglio (Boston College), Katie Myers (Providence). Allen - Mackenzie Noda (Rutgers).
COLONIAL LEAGUE: Bangor - Allie Angulo (UConn).
Note: Coaches, please call The Morning Call at 610-820-6558 as your girls make their oral commitments.
BEST BETS FOR NEXT WEEK
Monday: Emmaus at Allen
Wednesday: Southern Lehigh at Moravian Academy
Compiled by Bradley A. Huebner after consulting with area coaches.
Copyright © 2007, The Morning Call