Too close for comfort
Sports Editor Certainly with some teams you sort of expect things to happen. Take the Phillies, for instance.
And when things don’t go as planned, it’s like, "Boy, I didn’t see that one coming."
That’s the feeling I got last night at Exeter watching the Cocalico girls field hockey team in their unexpected battle with Wilson.
After watching the Lady Eagles on their march to the State finals a year ago, it was pretty much a foregone conclusion in my eyes that Cocalico was going to enjoy some of the same successes once Districts began.
Sure, the Lady Eagles would miss several of the seniors who led them a year ago, but new ones have emerged to pick up the slack. How good is senior defender Taylor Kidwell, by the way?
Anyway, someone forgot to tell the Wilson girls, who narrowly missed putting an end to the party before it began. Wilson was very good Tuesday and at many times the better team. The only thing the Bulldogs couldn’t do is finish, which is one big reason why the Lady Eagles live to fight another day.
Prior to their great run of a year ago, Cocalico probably would have lost that game. But, to the Lady Eagles’ credit, they found a way when it didn’t appear to be their night. I guess the experience of last year probably had something to do with that.
Anyway, let’s hope Tuesday’s game serves as a wake-up call. Nothing is assumed, everything is earned.
And I’m sure that will be the message Coach Krista Page will be preaching the rest of the week.
Looking to the Future
While it’s always disappointing when you lose a playoff game, the immediate future still looks very bright for both the Ephrata boys soccer and field hockey teams.
In a game that at times resembled football because of the rough play by Cedar Cliff, the Lady Mounts had their season come to an end Saturday at Lower Dauphin in the District preliminary round. And while that was a bummer, there is plenty of hope for the future as Ephrata returns at least 12 letter winners to the mix next season.
As Coach Rhoda Mounts said following the loss, "the County hasn’t heard the last from Ephrata field hockey."
The same could be said for the Ephrata boys soccer team, which returns all but two starters from the lineup that took the field Monday in their 1-0 loss to Central York.
Does that team ever have a down year? That’s a credit to Coach Rob Deininger and his staff, who have built a program that continues to maintain a high level of success year in and year out.
At this very same time last year, Cocalico was sitting at 3-5 and looking like a team that was going to be home for the playoffs. But the Eagles somehow picked themselves up off the canvas, got to 5-5 and snuck into the dance.
And the rest is history. Several weeks later, they were squaring off with mighty Bishop McDevitt for the AAA title.
Well, as the Eagles enter Week Nine this Friday, they sit in a familiar place at 3-5 with two winnable games ahead.
I’m not suggesting this team will make a similar run, considering the fact that last year’s squad was dominated by contributing seniors while just two 12th graders suited up for this past week’s game at Garden Spot.
But it would be a huge lift for this young team to somehow get some playoff experience heading into next season with virtually the entire lineup back in the fold.
I never would have thought in the beginning of the year that Cocalico would even be in the hunt for a playoff spot, considering its youth all across the board.
Just another outstanding job turned in by Coach Dave Gingrich and his staff. More RUTH, page B-7